Heavy Metal, Osteoporosis and why you need to read this.
What is Osteoporosis?
As we age, our bones thin and weaken, losing mass and density. This makes fractures and associated complications more likely and more serious. Males and females are at risk, with post menopausal women particularly so for a few years after menopause.
Your age and your genes are responsible for determining the strength of your skeleton, but lifestyle factors such as diet and exercise influence how healthy your bones are too.
Regular exercise is essential. Adults aged 19 to 64 should do at least 150 minutes (2 hours and 30 minutes) of moderate-intensity Cardiovascular Exercise, such as circuits, running or BootCamp every week. As your fitness improves, you can up the intensity accordingly.
As well as aerobic exercise, adults should also do muscle-strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week by working all the major muscle groups, including the legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, arms and shoulders – all of which we do at every BootCamp. Muscle Strengthening is also known as Resistance Exercise or Resistance Training.
Weight-Bearing Exercises and Resistance Exercises are particularly important for improving bone density and helping to prevent Osteoporosis.
Weight-Bearing Exercises are those where your feet and legs support your weight. High impact Weight-Bearing Exercises, such as Running Skipping, Dancing, BootCamp, and Plyometric Training (more info below), are all useful ways to strengthen your muscles, ligaments, tendons and joints. They also strengthen bones too, which is vitally important for both men and women, particularly as we age.
Resistance Exercises use muscle strength when working against a resistance, such as lifting a weight in a bicep curl, for example. Muscles that work hard against a resistance grow stronger and are able to work harder for longer. At the ends of each muscle are tendons that attach the muscle to your bones. Tendons are tough, fibrous tissue and you can think of them as ropes that tie your muscles and bones together.
When you lift something heavy (when doing a bicep curl, for example) your bicep muscles contract and pull on the tendons attached to the bones in your lower arm. The action of tendons pulling on bones acts as a signal to your body to strengthen those bones, which can help to prevent loss of bone mass as we age. BootCamp is full of such exercises and you can be sure that your muscles and bones will be much stronger if you come to BootCamp regularly.
Our new Heavy Metal Workout is perfect for strengthening and Toning Muscles, and just the job for strengthening Bones too. We’ll be doing at least one a week from now on so come along and try it soon.
Healthy eating and vitamin D supplements.
Eating a healthy, balanced diet is recommended for everyone. It can help prevent many serious health conditions, including Heart Disease, Diabetes and many forms of Cancer, as well as Osteoporosis.
Calcium is important for maintaining strong bones. Adults need 700mg a day, which you should be able to get from your daily diet.
Calcium-rich foods include:
Leafy Green Vegetables
Vitamin D is also important for healthy bones and teeth because it helps your body absorb calcium. All adults should consume 10 micrograms of vitamin D each day.
Good Dietary Sources of Vitamin D are:
Oily Fish – such as Salmon, Sardines, Herring and Mackerel
Fortified Foods such as most Fat Spreads and some Breakfast Cereals
However, it can be difficult to get enough vitamin D from foods alone. So, all adults should consider taking a daily supplement containing 10 micrograms of vitamin D.
Other lifestyle factors that can help prevent Osteoporosis include:
Stopping Smoking – Smoking is associated with an increased risk of Osteoporosis
Limiting Alcohol Intake – the NHS recommends not drinking more than 14 units of alcohol a week; it’s also important to avoid binge drinking.
Try our New HeavyMetal Workout and strengthen your Bones, Muscles and Mind!
Captain Felix Deer joined the Army in 1985 and served in a number of Training Officer roles, qualifying as a Unit Fitness Officer in 1986. Since leaving the Army in 1994, Felix has sold property, built houses and flown airliners for a living, but has always maintained his keen interest in Fitness.
A pioneer in mixed ability group fitness workouts, he freely admits to having “mostly hated” P.E at school and is of the firm belief that making workouts fun and catering for all abilities is vital in helping people get fit and stay happy and healthy.
His hobbies include Flying, Hiking, Rock Climbing, Weight Lifting, Trail Running and Conkers. Felix is 53 and lives in Surbiton with his dog, Ning Nong.