Nutrients for Healthy Bones
The consensus for building healthy bones is we need to take in more calcium. Calcium is the foundation for healthy bones, to be sure, but it’s not the only nutrient that the body needs for building healthy bones. Calcium works together with other nutrients, including vitamin D, to help maintain strong bones and the skeletal system’s high mineral density. This may not matter much to younger adults, but when you hit your forties onward, osteoporosis and other bone-weakening diseases become more common.
Maintaining healthy bones and joints requires a consistent stream of nutrients daily. These nutrients are best served in your daily diet, though supplementation may also be helpful. The problem with artificial supplementation is you don’t know how well the body responds to the supplementation, as the form of the nutrients may cause the body not to absorb the nutrients properly and over time. Studies have shown that diets that are naturally rich in fruits and vegetables, therefore, the common tract of essential nutrients necessary for healthy bones, joints, and skin, also provide a measure of protection against fractures or bone injury. This means that the more you eat bone-building fruits and vegetables now, the healthier your bones will be. The more protection you are from sudden breaks and fractures associated with accidents and other unforeseen events.
Another interesting angle found in another study showed that young girls, in particular, will benefit from increased intake of fruits. This particular study measured the bone mineralization density of the heels of girls aged 12 years old. The girls who ate high amounts of fruits regularly showed much higher bone mineralization than girls who only had moderate fruit consumption. No additional observations were noted except for this fascinating result, which appeared to be the direct connection between fruit consumption and bone growth in children.
What about older women? In another study that focused on the bone resorption capacity of older females, it was found that fruits, vegetables, and herbs all played a role in increase mineralization in the bones of women. While more studies are needed to clarify any gray areas in all these studies, it’s important to realize right now that there can be no other way to naturally improve bone health and bone density than by improving one’s diet. We have the most control over our diet, and it’s easier to add to one’s diet because there are so many ways to consume vegetables, and all universally love fruits.
Now, if you have some issues with consuming more fruit, your doctor might recommend certain fruits that have lower levels of fructose because fructose is known for causing absorption issues in the body. If you happen to have such an absorption issue, inform your doctor to know what to do. He would probably have you work with a dietitian or nutritionist to determine what kind of diet would work best for your case.
It has been cited in many research types over the past ten years that vitamin D is crucial to maintaining bone health at any age. Vitamin D is produced naturally by the body when we are exposed to the sun. Foods like fortified milk and cod liver oil can also provide high doses of vitamin D. Vitamin D does not occur in high enough doses in either fruits or vegetables. To get more vitamin D, we recommend oral supplementation and mild sun exposure. Wear sunscreen when you go out.
Other nutrients are important for building healthy skin, bones, and joints: vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, magnesium, and phosphorous. Luckily, these nutrients can be found in most fruits, so just increasing your dietary intake of fruits of all kinds can already set the path for you to have healthier bones in the future. Remember – it is a process of improving how your body uses the nutrients.
Phosphorous helps build strong bones because it occurs in the bone mineral as one of the major constituents of the core of our bones. Having enough vitamin D in the body requires absorbing and utilizing sufficient phosphorous in the intestines from dairy products and meat.
Magnesium also occurs in our bones’ crystals, and it helps keep the skeleton strong and durable. Unfortunately, it has been found that older adults tend to have a magnesium deficiency, which ultimately leads to the weakening of the bones. If a quick change in one’s diet will not work, you must improve your state by taking mineral supplements with magnesium’s right levels.
Vitamin K is essential to healthier bones because it helps in the proper development of bones. Vitamin K also helps with the proper mineralization of the bones so that all available calcium is directed to the bones to aid in mineralization.
Vitamin C helps the body in synthesizing collagen, which is a primary protein found in bones. The more stable your supply of vitamin C, the better off you will be in terms of bone health and skin health, too. Collagen is also an important protein in the formation of skin cells and tissues.
Vitamin A is vital not just for good eyesight – it is also vital for good bone formation. Vitamin A is responsible for regulating the proper cell differentiation of bone cells, developing normally.
What Fruits Are Helpful for Bones?
Based on what we know of bone health and the requirements of the body, we’ve come up with these essential lists of bone-growing fruits just for you:
- All citrus fruits
- Yellow fruits
- Red fruits
- Orange fruits
- Dried apricots
- Dried figs
- Dried peaches
- Dried plums