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The Best Foods To Eat For Strong And Healthy Bones

The Best Foods To Eat For Strong And Healthy Bones

Are you interested in keeping your bones strong and healthy? If so, exercises like walking and lifting weights can help, but your diet is also incredibly important! A bone-healthy diet is going to include minerals like calcium, potassium, magnesium, and vitamins like vitamin D and K. Below is a guide to some of the best foods you can eat to get the nutrients you need.

1. Yogurt

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    If you want to keep your bones strong, yogurt is one of the best foods that you can eat. A single serving of yogurt will provide you with 30% of your calcium and 20% of your vitamin D for the day. It is also incredibly versatile and is great in smoothies or parfaits.

    Apart from all of this, yogurt is good even for those who are lactose intolerant as it is an excellent source of probiotics, the healthy bacteria that live in your gut and that can improve both your digestion and immunity. However, be sure to choose one that is unsweetened and has live, active cultures.

    2. Cheese

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      Apart from yogurt, cheese is another great way to go to support your bone health. Cheese is high in fat, but the good news is that you don’t have to eat a lot to get the calcium you need — just an ounce and a half of cheddar cheese can give you 30% of the calcium you need for the day. Keep in mind, however, that the amount of calcium will vary from one cheese to another.

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      Apart from being high in calcium, cheese is also a great source of protein and is good to include in vegetarian diets.

      3. Sardines

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        These fish may be tiny, but they come packed with a bone-strengthening combination of calcium, vitamin K, and vitamin D. This is because sardines are eaten with their bones still in them. They are great when added to salads or can also be placed on toast for a quick and easy snack.

        Sardines are also part of a healthy diet because they can give you a big dose of protein while still staying low in fat.

        4. Salmon and Other Fatty Fish

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          Salmon and other fatty fish are great for preventing bone weakness with a winning combination of calcium and vitamin D — just a few ounces of salmon will give you 100% of your daily vitamin D requirements. Not a salmon fan? That’s okay, other fishes like tuna and mackerel are also great choices.

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          These fish will not only give you strong bones but a strong heart: they are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, which can lower your blood pressure and cholesterol naturally.

          5. Spinach

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            A bone-healthy diet doesn’t just have to rely on meat and dairy products — there are plenty of plant-based foods that will keep your bones strong as well. One of the best of these is spinach, which gives you a rich combination of calcium, magnesium, potassium, and vitamin K, with few calories and absolutely no fat!

            The good news doesn’t end there: spinach is also great for getting your iron and fiber for the day. And if you want to explore other greens that will also be great for your health, collards, turnip greens, kale, bok choy, and other leafy green vegetables are your top picks.

            6. Fortified Orange Juice

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              It might come as a surprise, but fruits are also a great way to protect your bones. One particularly good drink is orange juice that has been fortified with calcium and vitamin D. What makes it even better is that it is already high in potassium.

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              Orange juice is also high in vitamin C, which will help develop your immune system. However, because it is also high in calories and sugar, it is something you will want to enjoy in moderation.

              7. Figs

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                Orange juice is not the only way to go if you are looking for fruits that will help build up your bones. Figs, too, are a great choice, since they are not only high in calcium but also in other important nutrients like potassium and magnesium. Keep in mind that there is a difference in the values between fresh fruits (with 90 mg of calcium) and dried ones (with 120 mg).

                Figs are also great for you because they give you a load of fiber, which can improve your digestive system and, because it curbs your appetite, help fight hunger pains.

                8. Potatoes

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                  Potatoes don’t usually come to mind when you think about foods that prevent bone loss, but they actually are a good food to include in your diet. They have a rich combination of magnesium, potassium, and vitamin K. They are especially good if you prepare them with their skins still on.

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                  However, while potatoes are high in nutrients, they are another food that is best enjoyed in moderation, as they are calorie-dense and, due to being full of starch, can spike your blood sugar

                  9. Almonds

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                    Almonds are another nutrient-rich food that will give you loads of both calcium and vitamin K. You can eat them raw as a snack or enjoy them in the form of nut butters or nut-based milks like almond milk (which makes a great base for a breakfast smoothie).

                    Almonds are also rich in good-for-you fats, proteins, and fiber, and studies have shown that people who eat them regularly are more likely to have a healthy body weight than those who do not.

                    10. Soy

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                      Are you vegetarian but still want to avoid the problem of weak bones? Then load up on the soy! In all its forms — tofu, tempeh, or soy milk — soy is a great source of not only calcium, but also of compounds called isoflavones, which studies have shown to ward off osteoporosis for women who have hit menopause.

                      Soy is also both low in fat and high in protein, making it a great choice for an overall healthy diet.

                      So, if you want to build those strong and healthy bones that will keep you fit and active even as you age, load up on the foods above. They will provide you with a rich blend of vitamins and minerals that will keep osteoporosis at bay — and give you a wide range of health benefits on the side.

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                      Brian Wu

                      Health Writer, Author

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                      Last Updated on September 18, 2020

                      7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

                      7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

                      Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

                      Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

                      1. Exercise Daily

                      It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

                      If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

                      Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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                      If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

                      2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

                      Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

                      One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

                      This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

                      3. Acknowledge Your Limits

                      Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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                      Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

                      Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

                      4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

                      Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

                      The basic nutritional advice includes:

                      • Eat unprocessed foods
                      • Eat more veggies
                      • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
                      • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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                      Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

                        5. Watch Out for Travel

                        Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

                        This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

                        If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

                        6. Start Slow

                        Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

                        If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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                        7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

                        Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

                        My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

                        If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

                        I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

                        Final Thoughts

                        Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

                        Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

                        More Tips on Getting in Shape

                        Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

                        Reference

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