You know you need your calcium, but you might not realize other lifestyle factors that could increase your risk for osteoporosis.
Whether you are concerned about maintaining bone health, or you’ve already been told you have osteoporosis or osteopenia, optimizing your diet’s nutritional values can help you prevent and even fight osteoporosis naturally!
Your gastrointestinal system is the source of nutrition for your cells daily functioning. If your cells are having trouble absorbing nutrients from the foods you take in, you are at risk for inflammation and osteoporosis.Part of the problem we often have with absorption starts because we don’t have enough of the “good” bacteria that helps in digesting food and absorbing nutrients. Some steps you can take to help keep maintain good levels of gut flora are:
- Get plenty of fiber in your diet. Friendly bacteria love fiber.
- Add foods to your diet like yogurt, kefir, kimchee and sauerkraut. These are “living” foods.
- Try taking a probiotic supplement on a regular basis. This can help restore the natural bacteria in your GI system.
- Try adding extra servings of alkalizing fruits and vegetables, lean proteins and high-quality fats such as: nuts, seeds, omega 3, and coconut oil to your daily diet.
- Try sprouting and cooking foods slowly or simmering. Foods contain more nutrients when they are sprouted and cooked slowly; deep-fried foods are more difficult for our bodies to digest.
- Avoid processed foods and limit refined sugars and grains as these often contain high amounts of additives, artificial colorings, flavorings and preservatives.
Take Gluten Off Your Menu. Research has shown a direct link between gluten reactivity and bone health. Whether you have been diagnosed with celiac disease or just have a mild intolerance to gluten, it sets off an inflammatory process which places your bone health at risk.
It’s much easier to implement a gluten-free diet now that there is such a wide variety of a food available. Many stores have whole sections dedicated to gluten-free foods. There is an extra benefit in eating gluten-free: since many foods which contain gluten are acid-forming, removing these will naturally lead you in the direction of a more alkaline dense diet.
- Agardh D, Björck S, Agardh CD, Lidfeldt J.Coeliac disease-specific tissue transglutaminase autoantibodies are associated with osteoporosis and related fractures in middle-aged women.Scand J Gastroenterol. 2009;44(5):571-8. doi: 10.1080/00365520902718929.
- Green PHR, Jones R. Celiac Disease: A Hidden Epidemic. Revised edition. New York, NY: HarperCollins; 2010.