Taking Care Of Your Bones In Your 20s To Be Active When You’re Older

care of your bones in 20s

“Osteoporosis? I am just 20!” 

Most women think there is time to worry about osteoporosis when they are young, just in their 20s or 30s. They think osteoporosis will not affect them until they are older than 50. 

While true that osteoporosis usually affects older women, that doesn’t mean women should not worry about osteoporosis when they are young. In fact, for younger women, now is the best time to prepare for long-term bone health. 

Taking care of your bones in your 20s will enhance the health of your bones and allow you to stay active throughout your life. Read on to know how young women in their 20s or 30s can take care of their bones to prevent osteoporosis and other bone and joint disorders in the future.

Top 6 things you should do to care of your bones in your 20s

1. Stay Active

If you want to stay active in your older age, you need to be active now. Regular exercise can keep your joints healthy and flexible and reduce the risk of osteoarthritis

Women in their 20s and 30s are advised to establish an exercise routine that includes movements of all joints in their arms, legs, and back. You should choose an exercise routine in which you perform a wide range of motion of all your joints to keep them flexible. [1]

Being physically active also means including different forms of exercises like weight-bearing activities, aerobic exercises, and cardio in your routine. Regular exercises will make your bones and joints strong and flexible, allowing you to stay active. [2

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You should also work out all the different groups of muscles in your body. Building stronger muscles will help to support your bones and joints. This can reduce the strain on your joints and reduce the risk of osteoarthritis and spondylosis. [3]

2. Choose the Right Foods

Being healthy involves choosing the right foods. When we talk about the health of  bones and joints, you need to pay special attention to your intake of calcium and vitamin D. [4]

These 2 nutrients play a vital role in increasing bone mineral density. A deficiency of vitamin D and calcium can make the bones weak and porous and increase your risk of osteopenia and osteoporosis. [5]

2 to 3 servings of vitamin D and calcium-rich foods at each meal could go a long way in preserving your bone health. The best natural sources of calcium include milk, yogurt, kale, almonds, edamame, and leafy vegetables. Foods high in vitamin D include fatty fish like salmon, eggs, and fortified cereals.

Some other bone-building foods women can load up on include bananas, prunes, and olive oil. Bananas contain a high amount of potassium and may promote bone strength by reducing bone resorption processes. 

Prunes offer a rich source of vitamin K that promotes bone health. Olive oil contains omega 3 fatty acids and a compound called oleuropein both of which helps prevent bone loss.

3. Maintain a Healthy Weight

Extra pounds can increase your risk of osteoarthritis and spondylosis. Obesity is one of the risk factors for joint diseases. The excess weight exerts more pressure on joints, making them vulnerable to faster wear and tear. [6

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Taking care of your bones should also involve maintaining a healthy weight. However, maintaining a healthy weight does not mean reducing your calorie intake drastically or being malnourished. [7]

Research studies have revealed that women who are underweight are more prone to develop osteoporosis at a younger age. The idea is to maintain a healthy weight to prevent both obesity and malnourishment. 

4. Assess Your Risk Factors

The risk of bone and joint disorders increases in all women as their age advances. However, the risk is higher in some women due to several risk factors. Women need to assess their risk of developing osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, and other bone disorders when they are younger to understand their likelihood of developing problems later.  

For example; women who have irregular periods due to hormonal imbalances are more likely to develop osteoporosis after menopause. Similarly, women who suffer from premature ovarian failure before the age of 40 years may have a high risk of osteoporosis due to the loss of production of estrogen. [8]

Women need to understand the various risk factors and seek appropriate treatment in order to minimize the impact of these risk factors on their bone health. 

5. Avoid Smoking

Research studies have revealed that smoking can increase the risk of osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, and spondylosis in women. Smoking can trigger inflammation and wear and tear in the joints. It may also affect bone formation and bone absorption processes. 

Women in their 20s should adopt healthy lifestyle habits and avoid smoking to ensure optimum bone health. This will help them avoid bone and joint disorders and allow them to stay physically active in the coming years. [9

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6. Minimize the Use of Smartphones

Research studies conducted to assess the impact of the use of smartphones on bone mineral density have led to startling findings. The studies have suggested that the excessive use of mobile phones can reduce the bone mineral density and increase the risk of osteoporosis. 

Hence, young women are advised to minimize their use of smartphones to ensure optimum bone health and prevent osteoporosis. [10]

Conclusion

Taking care of your bones when you are young is essential to maintain optimum bone health. Starting early, when you have the ability to perform a variety of exercises, is what women need to do to avoid bone and joint diseases when they get older. 

Taking care of your bones at a younger age will help you reduce the risk of osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, and spondylosis in the future. An active lifestyle now can help you stay active and allow you to enjoy your life to the fullest as you age.

References:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6323511/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6279907/
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16702776
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4780273/
  5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17913228/
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3291123/
  7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3788203/
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6332715/
  9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5473429/
  10. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21415640/

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