The skeleton enables humans to stand erect and serves as a foundation for muscle tissue, giving us movement. In addition, the skeleton houses bone marrow, important for the function of manufacturing antibodies.
The bones are a composite of minerals, with calcium being the most abundant. Throughout life, the bones constantly change and remodel, but different rates of bone resorption and formation occur at different times of the life.
At puberty, bones grow at an accelerated pace, resulting in increases of both length and density of the skeletal structure. After puberty, the bones continue to grow in width and mass, for the next 10 to 15 years. A person is considered to be at peak bone mass at 35 years of age. At midlife, the bones continue to remodel, but bone mass remains constant.
After 45 years of age, the bone mass begins to shrink, from about .2-.5 percent per year. Prior to the menopause, women lose bone mass at a greater rate than normal, largely due to hormonal changes.
Experts state that two factors, physical activity and adequate calcium intake, have the greatest bearing on the growth and maturity of the bones. They also hold that inadequate calcium intake, during the years of childhood to young adulthood, could result in the bones not reaching their full maturity. These factors contribute to the risk of a common disease, known as osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis is a disease characterized by low bone mass, where the internal structure of the bone has eroded to the extent that even a slight trauma will cause the bone to fracture easily.
CALCIUM is an essential mineral which is necessary for healthy, strong bones and teeth. Within plasma and cells, calcium functions in blood clotting, membrane stability and permeability, nerve conduction, muscle contraction, cellular secretion, enzymatic activity, and cell growth.
MAGNESIUM is essential for the metabolism of potassium and calcium. It is also required for the mobilization of calcium from bones.
PHOSPHORUS plays a fundamental role in modifying the development and maturation of bone. Because it plays a role in bone resorption, mineralization and collagen synthesis, it plays an integral role in calcium homeostasis.
VITAMIN C has many uses in the body. It is needed for healthy teeth, bones and blood vessels.
VITAMIN A is a fat-soluble nutrient which plays an important role in the immune system and the healthy formation of bones, and teeth.
VITAMIN D is very important. It participates in healthy bone formation at all ages. It is essential for normal mineralization of bone and cartilage.
-Avoid red meats, animal protein contains phosphates that steal calcium
-Eat a daily, fresh green salad
-Consume Calcium, magnesium & potassium-rich foods such as: broccoli, fish, eggs, yogurt, carrots, dried fruit, leafy greens, sprouts, bananas and apricots
-Avoid sugars, caffeine, alcohol & tobacco
-Daily weight bearing exercises
-Sunlight everyday, preferably early morning to avoid heat and skin harm
-Avoid non-filtered computer screens, fluorescent lights & aluminum cookware