Build Strong Bones With…A Salad?
We're going to let you in on a little secret: There's more to building strong bones and slashing your risk of osteoporosis than loading up on dairy.
A new research review published inOsteoporosis Internationalsuggests that naturally occurring compounds in fruits and veggies called alkaline potassium salts build strong bones by reducing your rate of bone resorption, or breakdown, and reducing the amount of calcium you excrete through urine.
To reach this conclusion, researchers analyzed a total of 14 studies in which participants were given one of two alkaline potassium salts, potassium citrate and potassium carbonate—the equivalent of consuming 7 to 8 servings of fruits and vegetables a day.
Bone resorption is actually a natural process that's coupled with bone formation, says study author Helen Lambert, PhD. But for some people, there's more breakdown than growth, leading to fragile, weak bones that break easily. So reducing resorption might help prevent osteoporosis or benefit people who already have it.
MORE:12 Ways To Get Break-Proof Bones For Life
These salts seem to work their magic by neutralizing excess acid in the body, which can contribute to bone breakdown, says Lambert.
To increase your intake, opt for fresh produce you know is rich in potassium such as spinach, beet greens, avocados, sweet potatoes, beets, oranges, edamame, and raisins. These contain potassium citrate, some of which is converted to potassium bicarbonate in the body. Dark leafy greens, a particularly good source, are also loaded with bone-building calcium, magnesium, and vitamin K, making them do double-time for you bones.
One important thing to keep in mind: While a big old salad will help boost bone strength, fruits and veggies are unlikely to provide you with enough bone-building calcium and vitamin D by themselves, says Lambert. So don't consider this study a call to ditch dairy.
Video: The Asian Chopped Salad With Spicy Peanut Dressing | Recipe | Benefits | Yogic Organic Living
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