Bone Loss Begins At 30
Does bone care become less of a priority after you have hit the big 30? After all, you would have already reached your peak bone mass. You might think there isn’t much to worry about until you reach menopause.
The fact is bone care IS important for women in their thirties. It should remain a priority throughout your thirties and after, experts advised, and not to wait until menopause.
Bone is living tissue and it is constantly being broken down and renewed. After the age of 30, more bone is broken down than it is formed, causing bone density to decline. It is important to note that bone loss does not only happen after menopause. However, the bone loss process is accelerated for women after menopause, due to the loss of estrogen.
If you are thinking of waiting till menopause to boost your bone health, you could be making a serious mistake. Without having a diet rich in calcium and getting plenty of exercise during the age of 30 to 50 years, you would have wasted 20 years of bone care maintenance. Although your bone mass may have reached its peak, every step you take during these years, to sustain your bone density and strength will help you to reduce your risk of developing osteoporosis and bone fractures.
Are You Doing Enough To Maintain Your Bone Health?
For women after 30, getting adequate calcium intake and leading a healthy lifestyle is the key to maintain strong bones. Among the healthy habits you can adopt to improve your health and your bones strength are getting regular exercise (especially weight-bearing ones such as walking, biking, hiking and dancing), quit smoking, and limit consumption of alcohol.
What Is Your Calcium Intake?
Are you getting enough calcium each day? Are you sure about it?
A key finding in the study conducted by Frost and Sullivan in 2005 to evaluate the milk consumption habits and calcium intake among women showed that seven out of ten women consume only one glass of milk per day. Only four percent of the 150 respondents took the required daily intake of three glasses a day. Among the reasons the respondents cited for not taking milk included they do not like the taste, it is fattening and poor lactose tolerance.
Another finding of the study revealed that majority of the consumers, 69 percent, were not aware of how much calcium they need to take per day.
Consuming enough of calcium helps to prevent bones from getting weaker and ‘brittle’ later in life. According to the US National Academy of Science, the recommended intake of calcium for women between the ages of 30 to 50 years is 1000mg calcium a day. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, you would need a higher calcium intake.
Here is a list of calcium-rich food and the amount of calcium found in each serving:
- 1 cup of yogurt (150g) – 200mg
- 1 piece of cheddar cheese (20mg) – 100mg
- 1 glass of milk – 315mg
- 1 piece of tofu (150g) – 200mg
If you are not getting sufficient calcium from your diet, you can opt for calcium supplements to fulfill your daily calcium requirements. Calcium supplements are available in tablet from and liquid capsules. The calcium we consume from food or supplements must go through the digestion process before it is absorbed by the body. A hard solid tablet that does not disintegrate properly might possibly pass the absorption site of the small intestine, therefore limiting its absorption. Liquid calcium supplements can be easily dissolved and disintegrated upon entry to the stomach, making it a better choice.
As a guide to selecting calcium supplements, the National Osteoporosis Foundation recommends the following:
- Choose calcium that conforms to BP or USP standard.
- 500mg or less in each dose.
- Take several times a day.
- Chewable and liquid supplement dissolve well as they are broken down before entering stomach.
- Spread out calcium intake throughout the day.