How can I make my bones stronger?

Diana Meeks
Diana Meeks on behalf of Sigma Nursing
Family Practitioner

You can take action to strengthen your bones and improve your bone health at any age. The two best things you can do are to eat foods rich in calcium and vitamin D, and to exercise. Eat low or nonfat milk or yogurt, green leafy vegetables, almonds and salmon. Regularly do weight-bearing exercise such as walking, running, jumping rope, or playing basketball.

Toby Smithson
Nutrition & Dietetics Specialist

Consuming enough calcium and vitamin D each day and combining it with weight bearing and resistance exercise are keys to building stronger bone. Calcium and vitamin D requirements are based on age and gender. For adults it is between 1000 milligrams to 1200 milligrams per day. As a reference an eight ounce glass of milk contains 300 milligrams of calcium. Weight bearing and resistance training exercise include walking, running, lifting weights or using a stretch band, or carrying bags of groceries.

While genetics and lifestyle contribute to healthy bones, it is important to consume enough calcium every day. Here are suggestions for healthy bones:
  • Consume enough calcium and vitamin D every day.
  • Participate in regular weight-bearing or strength training activities.
  • Avoiding smoking and excess alcohol intake.
  • Talk with your health-care provider about bone health.
  • Have a bone density test if you're over age 50.

You can make your bones stronger by being active. The best time for your body to build bone is before you turn 30. The more you're physically active when you're young, the stronger your bones will be when you're older.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.