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HealthLinks: Five Ways to Love Your Bones

It’s true: time can take a toll on our bones. Some lifestyle habits can, too. Through the years, our bones, which are constantly rebuilding themselves,
can start to wear down faster than they’re replaced.

How to be good to your bones

It’s never too late to give our bones a boost. Here are a few tips to get you started.

  • Stop by the dairy aisle. Not getting enough calcium and vitamin D can hasten bone loss. Aim to eat a healthy diet that includes calcium-rich foods such as low-fat milk, yogurt, and cheese.
  • Consider supplements. (Ask your doctor about your vitamin D and calcium needs, and whether a supplement would help.)
  • Stay active. Weight-bearing workouts such as walking, climbing stairs, and lifting weights are great for bones. Exercising regularly also keeps your muscles strong so that you’re less likely to break a bone.
  • If you smoke, do your best to quit. Smoking may contribute to unhealthy bones.
  • Take steps to avoid accidents. Start with keeping a clutter-free floor and installing good lighting in your home.

Know your risk

You may have a higher risk of osteoporosis because of things that you cannot change — like your age, body size, or gender. Talk with your doctor about
your risk of osteoporosis and whether you should be screened for it.

Sources: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons; National Institutes of Health; HealthinAging.org

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