Which foods, vitamins and minerals help and which harm bone health?

chicken, milk, eggs

It takes more than just calcium if you want healthy bones. You can find out more about the vitamins and minerals you need and avoid here.

What vitamins and minerals, besides calcium, are needed for stronger bones?

  1. Vitamin D
    The main function of vitamin D is to help with the absorption of calcium, without it, even though calcium is consumed, there is a high probability that it will not be absorbed by the body. Along with calcium, experts consider vitamin D3 – the form of the vitamin found in fish liver oil – to be the most important item in bone health.

Although the daily recommended dose is 400 international units, doctors recommend 1000 international units of vitamin D3. Elderly people who don't move enough and don't get enough calcium from their diet would have to take up to 2000 international units a day in the form of a supplement.

There are several natural sources of vitamin D3 (eg cod liver oil, tuna and salmon), but the best source is the sun. Sun exposure provides most people with sufficient amounts of vitamin D. It only takes 10 to 15 minutes of sun exposure to synthesize vitamin D, after which you should apply sunscreen. Keep in mind that sunscreens with an SPF of 8 or higher block UV rays that stimulate vitamin D production.

vitamin d
Vitamin K
Studies have shown that a combination of calcium, vitamin D, and K is better for bone health than calcium alone or calcium and vitamin D. Vitamin K helps the bone retain the calcium it has. Research has proven the formation of a biochemical reaction in the bone protein called osteocalcin, which helps bind calcium and thus build and maintain bone.
The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) is 65 micrograms for women and 80 micrograms for men. Fortunately, vitamin K can be found in dark green vegetables, e.g. spinach and broccoli and in some oils, such as soybean oil. Two servings of broccoli or one serving of spinach provide a quarter to a fifth of the RDA.
Increased potassium intake, primarily from fruits and vegetables, is associated with higher baseline bone density and reduced bone loss. Potassium affects calcium homeostasis by promoting urinary conservation and reducing calcium excretion. Low-potassium diets increase calcium excretion while high-potassium diets decrease calcium excretion.
Increased potassium intake reduces the effects of high-salt diets and strengthens bone resorption. Potassium salts help neutralize metabolic acids from reduced bone mass, says Primal Kaur.
Adults need about 4.7 grams of potassium per day. Food sources include chicken, turkey, fish, fruits (such as bananas, raisins, cantaloupe) and vegetables (such as celery, carrots and potatoes).magnezijMagnesium
According to the Surgeon General's Office, 60 percent of the magnesium in our bodies is found in our bones in combination with calcium and phosphorus. Magnesium affects bone quality. Studies show that it can improve bone mineral density and insufficient magnesium intake can interfere with our ability to process calcium.
The recommended daily dose is 320 mg for women and 420 mg for men. Green vegetables are a good natural source of magnesium.Are there any foods that damage bone health?
Regular consumption of 5-8 dcl of alcohol per day can cause bone damage in young people. Consumption of 7 drinks per week is associated with an increased risk of decreased bone mineral density. Heavy drinkers are more prone to bone loss and fractures, claims Professor Tejaswini Rao.
You should consume no more than 400 ml of caffeine per day. Excess caffeine means loss of calcium. A cup of coffee contains about 100ml of caffeine, although the actual amount depends on the brewing time. Tea, sodas, and various medications also contain caffeine.kofeinSodium
Increased sodium intake through food can lead to higher excretion of calcium in the urine.
Vitamin A
Excessive amounts of vitamin A are associated with bone loss and the risk of hip fractures. Scientists believe that large doses of vitamin A influence the increase of osteoclasts, the cells that break down bone. They also believe that a large amount of vitamin A can interfere with vitamin D.
Therefore, although we need vitamin A for better vision, higher amounts are harmful to bones.

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