The 10 best bone foods

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Louise Hay

Author and references

How to have strong bones? Let's start with the diet! A balanced and varied diet it allows us to take in all the nutrients necessary to keep us fit and healthy.

Bones can also benefit, especially if at least some of the following foods are part of our habits. Let's find out together.


The 10 foods to mineralize bones


If we think that in the human organism the water is the constituent present in greater quantity, we can understand how important it is to keep us healthy. In fact she is involved in all physiological processes, including breathing and digestion, and acts as a lubricant with function of shock absorber in the joints. It is therefore essential to avoid stress and inflammation of the bones.

Furthermore, water is one of the main ones sources of calcium. Therefore, prefer the intake of water rich in minerals it can be a good strategy to ensure a correct intake of this micronutrient, which is essential for bone health.


2. Almonds  

Rich in calcium and potassium, le almonds contribute to the maintenance of healthy and strong bones. A standard portion of dried fruit in shell, according to the national guidelines (Levels of Reference Intake of Nutrients and energy for the population of the country - LARN) is 30 g, however, this should be customized based on your state of health and your energy-nutritional needs.


3. Sardines, anchovies, mackerel

Small fish such as sardines, anchovies, anchovies and mackerel, in addition to being rich in good fats, they are rich in calcium, thanks to their bones.


4. Avocado 

Avocado is rich in vitamin K., essential for bone health, as it promotes the absorption of calcium and reduces its loss through the urine. In addition, it contains molecules called saponin they would seem improve symptoms of osteoarthritis.


5. Ginger  

Highly antioxidant and anti-inflammatoryAccording to some studies, ginger has a powerful effect in preventing and relieving rheumatoid arthritis, a chronic inflammation of the joints. It can be eaten fresh to flavor vegetables or meat or fish main courses or to prepare herbal teas. Furthermore, it is possible to take it in supplement form. 

6. Broccoli 

Broccoli is an excellent source of important nutrients for the growth and maintenance of bone health. Among these we find calcium, phosphorus, zinc, vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin K. Recall that, according to the national guidelines (LARN). you should have at least a 200g portion of vegetables per meal.


7. Spinach 

Spinach is also rich in essential micronutrients for our bones, including calcium, vitamin C and vitamin K. Furthermore, they are among the richest vegetables in iron, whose absorption is favored by vitamin C: this is why a good strategy could be to consume a glass of water with the juice of half a lemon after the meal!


8. Milk and derivatives

Dairy products are among the main sources of calcium, however, pay attention to the saturated fat content! It is preferable to prefer milk and low-fat cheeses, such as yogurt or ricotta. On the other hand, those who do not like the taste of milk or follow a vegan diet can opt for vegetable drinks (soy, almond, oat, etc.) with added calcium and vitamin D. If fortified, in fact, vegetable drinks have the same quantities of calcium compared to common cow's milk.


9. Figs 

Figs represent the fruit richest in calciumbut not only that, they contain considerable amounts of potassium and magnesium, minerals equally important for maintaining healthy bones. Dried figs, in particular, being dehydrated, have a higher concentration of these nutrients. However, while a standard serving of fresh fruit is 150g, the reference serving for dehydrated fruit is 30g.

10. Sesame seeds 

Sesame seeds are a valuable source of minerals such as calcium, manganese, magnesium and zinc, which play an important role in maintaining bone density. However, they also have a fair amount of antinutrients such as oxalates and phytates, which reduce their absorption. Therefore, it is preferable to leave them to soak or toast them before consumption.


Bones, get to know them closely

Bones they are a form of connective tissue strongly mineralized with main support function. There are about 206 in the human body and they are connected to each other to form joints.


The structure of the bones has a compact dense layer, called compact bone and a spongy layer, less dense and composed of a series of trabeculae that give greater flexibility and delimit the marrow cavities that contain the bone marrow, involved in the production of blood cells.


Bones they are mainly composed of minerals such as calcium and phosphorus, cartilage, nerves, blood vessels and cells such as osteoblasts, which are responsible for bone development and osteoclasts, which are involved in bone resorption.

As we age, bone mineral density (i.e. the measure of the amount of minerals contained in one cubic centimeter of bone) decreases gradually, in a physiological way. When this becomes lower than normal we speak of osteopenia, which can lead to osteoporosis. 


To prevent these and other bone diseases, such as osteoarthritis, it is important to pay attention to nutrition, ensuring a correct intake of micronutrients such as calcium, phosphorus, vitamin K and vitamin D., and maintaining an active lifestyle.


We have seen a range of foods that promote bone health, but which ones are not recommended in case of risk of osteoporosis? Mainly:


  • Foods excessively rich in phosphorus and sodium (such as red meat and industrial foods) which, if in excess, favor the elimination of calcium in the urine.
  • Foods rich in oxalates (such as chocolate, coffee and tea), which reduce the absorption of calcium in the intestine. 


Other useful tips for giving well-being to the bones


Bibliography and sources

Guidelines for healthy eating, Food and Nutrition Research Center (CREA)

Levels of Reference Intake of Nutrients and Energy for the El paesena population, El paesena Society of Human Nutrition

Supplementary Methods in the Nonsurgical Treatment of Osteoarthritis, Arthroscopy

A randomized, placebo-controlled, cross-over study of ginger extracts and Ibuprofen in osteoarthritis, Osteoarthritis and cartilage

Nutrition in Bone Health Revisited: A Story Beyond Calcium, Journal of the American College of Nutrition

Vitamin K-dependent proteins involved in bone and cardiovascular health, Molecular medicine reports

Bioactive Foods in Promoting Health

Nutrient composition and effect of processing treatments on anti nutritional factors of Nigerian sesame (Sesamum indicum Linn) cultivars, international food research journal

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