How to strengthen your bones ? How to accelerate bone consolidation? And if everything started from our plate. As Hippocrates said, “We are what we eat”.
What do you think is the most effective way to strengthen your bones ?
Calcium, not so effective after all
Not very positive studies
Today, studies show us that the acid-base of the body and physical exercise have a better impact on our bones than calcium intake. Calcium is therefore not the most important factor for better consolidation or for fighting osteoporosis. Despite this, we still need 1000 milligrams per day.
Most studies show little evidence between calcium intake and bone density or rate of bone loss. Similarly, calcium intake remains unproven to prevent hip fractures. Only one randomized controlled trial has shown a significant reduction in fracture risk in frail older women with low dietary calcium intake. However, the data suggest that the role of calcium intake in the management of osteoporosis remains very limited.
What about dairy products ?
Just like the interests of calcium for our bone system, the controversy persists for dairy products and their calcium intake. Milk is neither the only nor the first and best source of calcium for the body.
The milk we can buy in most supermarkets comes from cows fed with corn and soy, sometimes transgenic. In other words, because of the pesticides, herbicides and endocrine disruptors that come from corn and soy, the nutritional quality of milk is often low. This is why it is important to be informed about the quality of industrial milk, its origin and the feed used to produce it before consuming it.
As you can see, calcium supplements are not recommended to strengthen the bone system. I propose two more interesting and scientifically proven alternatives to strengthen your bones :
The interest of the acid-base balance
Indeed, everything starts with our diet. It is no longer a matter of eating calcium to strengthen your bones. But rather to treat the cause, which could slow down the consolidation process. It would be the metabolic acidity of the body, in other words the PH. The acidity of the body (PH) is one of the most important factors in maintaining bone strength.
To better understand ...
When we eat too many acidifying foods compared to alkalizing foods. Our body acidifies and takes from our stomach, our bones, our muscles what it needs to keep an acid-base balance.
Yes, our bones contribute to maintaining a stable physiological PH in exchange for its minerals and alkaline elements. When the body abuses bone minerals, the bone system becomes unstable. So the more minerals we lose from our bones, the more fragile our bones become or the slower they consolidate. This is when the metabolism increases the activity of osteoclasts (cells responsible for bone destruction). This is why metabolic acidosis (acidity in the body) is a risk factor for osteoporosis.
How can we rebalance our body's acid-base ?
Start by eating a healthy diet rich in alkalizing foods and avoiding acidifying ones. Drinking 2 liters of water per day. Avoiding all forms of stress that are toxic and acidifying to the body. Find time to do an activity you enjoy.
Physical exercise: 30 minutes of aerobic exercise each day optimizes oxygen uptake and helps eliminate carbon dioxide. Stimulate the elimination of acids, this allows the elimination of acids through the skin, such as the sauna.
If all this is not enough, it is possible to take alkalizing supplements.
The main alkalinizing :
It is estimated that 87% of patients refer acidity to urine ph tests. This is why, in the general population, it is important to work with PH for any pathology. Measuring PH and working on acid-base balance is always a good idea. For more information on this subject, you can consult a health professional !
What are the alkalizing foods ?
The best alkalizing products are all vegetables with a majority of water (watermelon, melon, cucumber etc)
The value of exercise
Good results in postmenopausal women and osteoporosis
High-intensity training improves mineral density and physical function in postmenopausal women with osteopenia and osteoporosis. It is important to parameterize and quantify the sessions to reduce risk.
Another study demonstrated the effectiveness of impact exercises combined with other types of training such as weight training in preserving bone mineral density in perimenopausal and postmenopausal women.
On the other hand, another study showed the effects of aquatic activities on bone health in postmenopausal women.
For example, the French Table Tennis Federation (FFTT) has created a new concept adapted to women called fit ping tonic. An activity that meets the criteria mentioned above, a sport with impact mixed with fitness while being fun.
Strong bones in athletes
In athletes, bones become stronger when they are subjected to high impact physical activity. The central part of the bone called diaphyses thickens as well as the extremities called epiphyses. For example, in runners, the organization of bone tissue changes so that the impact of each stride is better supported. The muscle insertion points on the bones also become stronger.
On the other hand, sports where impacts are rare, such as swimming or cycling, have no benefits on the bones.
- Sañudo B, de Hoyo M, Del Pozo-Cruz J, Carrasco L, Del Pozo-Cruz B, Tejero S, et al. A systematic review of the exercise effect on bone health: the importance of assessing mechanical loading in perimenopausal and postmenopausal women. Menopause N Y N. oct 2017;24(10):1208‑16.
- Watson SL, Weeks BK, Weis LJ, Harding AT, Horan SA, Beck BR. High-Intensity Resistance and Impact Training Improves Bone Mineral Density and Physical Function in Postmenopausal Women With Osteopenia and Osteoporosis: The LIFTMOR Randomized Controlled Trial. J Bone Miner Res Off J Am Soc Bone Miner Res. févr 2018;33(2):211‑20.
- Reid IR, Bristow SM, Bolland MJ. Calcium supplements: benefits and risks. J Intern Med. oct 2015;278(4):354‑68.
- Simas V, Hing W, Pope R, Climstein M. Effects of water-based exercise on bone health of middle-aged and older adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Open Access J Sports Med. 2017;8:39‑60.
- Bolland MJ, Grey A, Reid IR. Should we prescribe calcium or vitamin D supplements to treat or prevent osteoporosis? Climacteric J Int Menopause Soc. 2015;18 Suppl 2:22‑31.