As November is the month of osteoporosis, this is the perfect opportunity to remind everyone about the importance of taking care of our bones. It is diet that provides the necessary foods for building and maintaining bones, mainly with calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and protein. When the body lacks calcium, the skeleton provides the missing calcium. Therefore, our bones become porous over time and run the risk of fracture: this is osteoporosis.
Thus it is important to consume enough calcium and vitamin D, which stimulates intestinal absorption of calcium. Dairy products are an important source of calcium, but large quantities of the latter can also be found in tinned salmon and sardines (with bones), almonds, legumes and some green vegetables like broccoli and Bok Choy.
The main source of vitamin D is what our own body produces as a result of exposure to the sun; this however becomes very difficult to sustain in our part of the world during winter. Vitamin D is also found in fortified foods such as milk, soy milk, margarine and orange juice. The only natural sources of vitamin D in the Canadian diet are fatty fish and egg yolk.
Health Canada recommends an intake of 15 mg (600 IU) of vitamin D per day. On the other hand, Osteoporosis Canada recommends a higher intake of 20 mg (800 IU) per day for people over the age of 50. It is possible to ensure an intake of 10 mg (400 IU) of vitamin D per day through a healthy diet, as proven by our specialized menus “Bone Healthy“. We can therefore top this up with a 1000 IU supplement per day from October until next April.
I remind you that regular physical activity is also essential to protect your bones.
Try our recipe for Salmon with a Spicy Crust, which is a source of Calcium and Vitamin D.