Believe it or not, the foods that you eat can affect every part of your body, including your bones. Maintaining a diet rich in calcium, Vitamin D and other nutrients that are essential for bone health, as well as overall health, can help strengthen bones and prevent osteoporosis in the future, allowing you to live a healthy lifestyle.
To promote strong bones and deter bone loss, add these foods to your daily diet:
1. Coconut Oil
A recent study suggests that supplementing your diet with virgin coconut oil may help reverse the effects of estrogen deficiency, which includes the loss of bone density. The antioxidant properties of coconut oil can help maintain bone structure and prevent bone loss due to hormonal changes. You can take coconut oil in one of two ways:
- Consume 3 tablespoons of virgin coconut oil each day to prevent osteoporosis,
- Use virgin coconut oil for cooking.
The antioxidants, polyphenols and flavonoids in apples make this fruit a powerful tool against osteoporosis. Phloridzin, a flavonoid in apples, helps improve inflammation markers and increase bone density. Apples are also rich in boron, a trace mineral that helps the body hold onto calcium. Eat an organic apple each day, including the skin.
3. Sesame Seeds
Sesame seeds are rich in calcium, which is one of the most essential nutrients for bone health. They also contain magnesium, manganese, copper, zinc, phosphorus and vitamins K and D.
- Chew a handful of roasted white sesame seeds in the morning.
- Or, mix 1 teaspoon of roasted, ground sesame seeds into 1 cup of warm milk and drink each day.
4. Almond Milk
Almond milk contains calcium, along with flavonoids that help reduce the number of free radicals in the body, protecting it from osteoporosis. Almond milk also contains magnesium, manganese and potassium, which are essential for strong and healthy bones.
- Soak 1 cup of almonds in water overnight.
- The next day, remove the peels, put the almonds in a blender and add 2 cups of water.
- Blend to a smooth puree, then add a little cinnamon powder and honey to taste.
- Strain the solution and drink daily.
According to a Florida State University study published in the British Journal of Nutrition, eating prunes on a daily basis can help prevent fractures and osteoporosis. Prunes contain a high concentration of polyphenols – antioxidants that help reduce bone loss. They’re also a good source of boron and copper, which are two trace minerals that are important in bone formation.
- Eat 2-3 prunes on a daily basis, and gradually increase to 6-10 per day.
Pineapple contains manganese, which is beneficial in preventing and treating osteoporosis. Manganese deficiency has been associated with bone loss and bone malformation, which can cause osteoporosis.
- Eat 1 cup of fresh pineapple daily for about 75% of the required daily dose of manganese.
- Or, drink 1 cup of pineapple juice daily.
7. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
A study published in the Journal of Bone Mineral Research found that the omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil inhibit the activation of factors that lead to bone loss and muscle loss. Omega-3 fatty acids are able to minimize bone breakdown. Two ways to get more Omega-3s:
- Eat cold-water fish such as salmon, to help raise the amount of essential fatty acids in your diet.
- Eat walnuts, chia seeds or hemp seeds.
8. Dark, Leafy Green Vegetables
Dark, leafy green vegetables such as spinach, collard greens, kale, mustard greens and turnip greens contain Vitamin K, an essential nutrient for keeping bones healthy and strong. Make vegetables a large part of your daily diet, especially leafy green ones!
The minerals in coriander are valuable for maintaining bone health. Coriander leaves and seeds are rich in calcium, potassium and manganese, along with magnesium and iron. Calcium and magnesium play a key role in treating and preventing weak bones.
- Mix 2 teaspoons of coriander seeds in 1 cup of hot water.
- Cover and steep for 10 minutes.
- Strain and add honey
- Drink twice a day.
Cabbage is high in Vitamin K, folate and Vitamin B6, which are all essential for bone health. Cabbage is also high in calcium and it contains Vitamin C, which significantly improves the body’s ability to absorb more calcium.
- Add more cabbage to your diet by incorporating it into stir frys, soup or sauerkraut.
11. Green Peas
Green peas are high in Vitamin K, Vitamin B6 and folate. These nutrients work to prevent dangerous molecules that can prevent collagen from forming a proper bone matrix. Add green peas to your daily diet. Be sure to choose fresh green peas over frozen or canned when possible.
12. Green Tea
Green tea contains many trace elements that are essential to bone health. Be sure to avoid the green tea beverages that are loaded with sugar. Make your own green tea at home and sweeten it up with a little bit of honey if needed.
- Drink 1-2 cups of green tea each day to load up on antioxidants and keep your body healthy.