Can you strengthen your bones?
Not just training too much or too quickly can lead to injuries. Your bone density also plays a role. I’ll give you some tips on how to strengthen your bones.
What is bone density?
As you get older, your bone density decreases. This decreases the strength of your skeleton, also called osteoporosis. This increases the risk of stress fractures, which are small cracks in the bone. This overuse injury is common among runners. If you compare men to women, then women are especially prone to this phenomenon, especially after menopause. Menopause causes a decrease in estrogen, which causes the bone to be broken down more quickly. Unfortunately, this process cannot be stopped, but you can slow it down. I’ll give you some tips.
Factors that cause a decrease in bone density
Don’t we all want to stay young forever? The pill that keeps you forever young has not yet been invented 😉 This then is a factor that we cannot control ourselves. We can keep ourselves young by getting enough exercise and living a healthy life. That always benefits our health.
Too little exercise
Try to get to 7,000-10,000 steps every day and move for at least half an hour at a light to moderate intensity. Go to work by bike or train with the Start 2 Run app.
Certain foods such as alcohol, caffeine and too high of a protein intake are said to speed up this process.
Your bone density is not only genetically determined, some factors ensure that the breakdown can be slowed down.
In order to slow down the breakdown of your bone density, it is important to exercise enough, at all ages. As shown in the graph below, bone mass increases rapidly in childhood and reaches a peak around the age of 30. However, it remains important to exercise enough after your 30th birthday. This way you can slow down the breakdown of bone density and the curve will flatten. It’s also important to encourage physical activity for your children. This way they will build up a larger reserve for later and create a higher bone mass. So take your kids with you on your training next time 😊
Healthy food is always important and is a protection factor against many diseases. Make sure that you absorb enough calcium. Calcium is not only found in dairy products such as milk and cheese. You can also find it in many seeds (sesame, tahini, flax seeds), vegetables (Chinese cabbage, watercress), sea products (sardines, algae and seaweed) and mineral water. So be sure to create a varied diet.
Curious about your own bone density?
Wondering how strong your bones are? The degree of calcification of the bones is determined with a DEXA scan. With a DEXA scan you will get an idea of the density of the bones per area and of the different bones in the body. A DEXA scan also maps your body composition and fat percentage. More information about a body composition analysis at Energy Lab can be found at Tips.