There is no denying the benefits of regular exercise for improving our overall health. But we often take for granted how beneficial exercise can be in maintaining strong bones.
Like muscle, bone is living tissue that responds to exercise by becoming stronger. Young women and men who exercise regularly generally achieve greater peak bone mass (maximum bone density and strength) than those who do not. Because bone is a living tissue, it changes in response to the forces placed upon it. When you exercise regularly, your bone adapts by building more cells and becoming more dense.
Weight-bearing and resistance exercises are the best for your bones. Weight-bearing exercises force you to work against gravity. They include walking, hiking, jogging, climbing stairs, playing tennis, and dancing. Resistance exercises – such as lifting weights – can also strengthen bones.
However exercise must be regular and ongoing to have the desired health benefits.
A combination of regular exercise, adequate calcium intake and proper vitamin D levels are all important for healthy bones. Almost 99% of the body’s calcium is found in the bones. Calcium combines with other minerals to form hard crystals that give your bones strength and structure. Vitamin D is important for bone health because it helps absorb calcium.
A healthy diet and regular exercise throughout a person’s life will reduce the risk of osteoporosis later in life.
Please check with your doctor before you begin a regular exercise program.
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