Bones and joints needs to be taken special care of as it supports and protects the internal body organs. It is an efficient factory which produces red blood cells and white cells from the bone marrow. Bones are also a storehouse for minerals. Joints are sturdy enough to hold the skeleton together while permitting a range of motions. Most joints allows bodily movement and some provide structural firmness.
Factors Affecting Bone Health :
In todays time without even realizing we often habitually act in ways that have profound, long-term effects on our bone health.
Sedentary Lifestyle: Our sedentary lifestyle contributes to several bones and joints problem such as back pain and stiffness, joints pain, arthritis and osteoarthritis.
Unhealthy Eating Habits: Still others exercise and take proper rest, but work under highly stressful conditions and unintentionally deplete their bone minerals reserve by their unhealthy eating habits like consuming too much of fatty, sugary food, smoking cigarettes, and taking excess of aerated drinks. These effects are cumulative and they eventually form a very heavy burden on our bones.
Stress and Negative Emotion: Most of us dont know but even stress and negative emotion can severely affect bone health as it leads to thin bone which may further lead to osteoporosis. Dr Pradeep Bhonsle, Head of Orthopaedics at KEM Hospital, says “Your bone density is determined by the rate at which these cells work. Under stress, our adrenal glands increase the production of cortisol. Cortisol, known as the ‘stress hormone’ as it’s released by the body in response to stress, can decrease bone density by inhibiting the bone-building osteoblasts.”
Hormonal Imbalance: Another factor that is responsible for poor bone health is hormonal imbalance. With an advancing age there is a gradual decline in sex hormone level which plays crucial role in maintaining proper bone health as;
- Estrogen (estrone, estriol and estradiol)- inhibit bone resorption
- Progesterone- stimulates bone formation
- Testosterone- stimulates bone formation and calcium absorption
- DHEA- is a precursor hormone that increases the levels of estrogen, progesterone and testosterone, while also inhibiting bone resorption and stimulating bone formation
- Growth hormone (GH)- it also stimulates bone formation and inhibits resorption
- Calcitonin- inhibits bone resorption
- Parathyroid hormone- promotes bone formation by controlling calcium and Phosphorous.
Ways to Healthy Bones & Joints :
As we age our bones density decreases and our joints can become stiff and chafed but we can always take proper care of them and keep them strong and healthy even with time.
Healthy Cartilage with Glucosamine
Glucosamine produces glycosaminoglycan, a molecule used in the formation and repair of cartilage and other bodily tissues. The only way to increase your natural glucosamine level is by taking a food supplement.
Protect Joints with Chondroitin
Though chondroitin is produced naturally in the body itself but with growing age its production may decline so you must take it in the form of supplements. Chondroitin keeps cartilage healthy by absorbing liquid from the body and storing it in the connective tissues. It also helps in making new cartilage. It prevents the action of enzymes on your cartilage thereby keeping them safe and strong.
Must have Calcium
It is the most important mineral that is required for strong teeth and bone. When blood calcium level decreases your body borrows it from your bone which leads to low bone density thus marks the onset of osteoporosis. The only way to stop it is by taking extra calcium.
MSM for Connective Tissue
Methylsulfonylmethane is known to alleviate joint pain and inflammation. Being a calcium phosphate dissolver, MSM helps in breaking up the unhealthy calcium deposits in the body that are the root cause of degenerative diseases. Taking adequate supplements of MSM helps in improving joint flexibility, reducing pain and swelling, reducing stiffness, improving circulation and cell vitality.
Together with these important supplements one must also take Magnesium which is essentially important for calcium absorption, Vitamin D that is too essential for calcium absorption as Dr. Michael F. Holick in his book, The UV Advantage says “You can eat as much calcium-rich food as you want to, but if you don’t have enough vitamin D in your body, you won’t be able to absorb that calcium into your bones.“ Lastly, Author of Nutrition and Healing, Dr. Jonathan V. Wright reports on studies as far back as the early 20th century that demonstrate Strontium’s positive effects on bone health. A 1910 study showed that “strontium appeared to be uniquely effective in stimulating rapid formation of bone.“ In the 1920s, and again in the 1950s, studies concluded that “calcium and strontium work better together than calcium alone for building bone.“ Then in 1985, “in addition to its antiresorptive activity, strontium was found to have anabolic (tissue-building) activity in bone.”
Note: So, add these essential minerals to your diet through supplements or food but always remember , Your bones are for life. Look after them and they will carry you far.