Bone Health Diet Guidelines

By EatingWell Editors

Recommended steps to help promote strong, healthy bones.

"I totally agree with Rebecca. It is a proven fact that eating dairy products its unhealthy. CTR "

Pack your diet with produce.

Some research suggests that older people who consume more fruits and vegetables have denser bones than those who eat less. One reason for this may be that most fruits and vegetables provide good amounts of potassium and many—particularly leafy greens—contain magnesium and vitamin K too. Emerging research suggests that all three of these nutrients may be important for maintaining healthy bones.

Tame your salty tooth.

Eating a diet that’s high in sodium and relatively low in potassium-rich foods like fruits and vegetables causes you to excrete excess amounts of calcium, which can have a negative impact on bones. Keep your daily intake of sodium to less than 2,300 mg per day.

Limit alcohol intake.

Alcohol interferes with the absorption and use of calcium and vitamin D, and science suggests that heavy alcohol intake reduces bone mass, increasing your risk for broken bones.

Don’t diet dangerously.

Crash dieting can wreak havoc on bones. If you’re trying to lose weight, do so gradually and healthfully, making sure to consume enough calcium and get adequate exercise. (Need help? Check out our Weight Loss & Diet Plans.) Beware: Dipping into an “underweight” range can disrupt reproductive hormones, including estrogen, that are critical to keeping bones strong. Our Essential Weight-Loss Tools can help you achieve a healthy diet successfully.

Butt out.

If you don’t already have a million and one reasons to kick the tobacco habit, here are two more: Research shows that smoking reduces calcium absorption. It also reduces bone mass, upping your chance of fractures.

Get a full year of EatingWell magazine.
World Wide Web Health Award Winner Web Award Winner World Wide Web Health Award Winner Interactive Media Award Winner