Strong, healthy bones don’t come out of nowhere; a myriad of life choices build them day after day. Performing weight-bearing exercises, not smoking, supplementing with some vitamins and minerals and choosing the right foods and drinks, the most famous, milk, help to create solid and unbreakable bones.
However, the connection between bones and drinks goes far beyond dairy (although it’s, of course, an excellent option). Numerous other drinks can help prevent bone loss by loading you with calcium, vitamin D, phosphorus, vitamin C, and other bone-building nutrients.
If you are working to heal your diet to fight osteoporosis, try these five healthful drinks. So, don’t miss the best fruit No. 1 to avoid bone aging.
No surprises here! Milk is a bone health classic for good reason. Dairy products are some of the highest food sources of calcium, the mineral that serves as a building block of the skeleton. While the jury is still out on how much calcium to ingest each day to prevent bone loss, one thing is certain: getting adequate vitamin D increases calcium absorption. Consuming the two together, as in a glass of vitamin D-fortified milk, offers a synergistic effect for strengthening bones.
Meanwhile, milk provides plenty of protein (an impressive 8 grams per 8 ounces). Research shows that protein is a key nutrient for bone health throughout the lifespan and also helps prevent osteoporosis.
Can’t drink milk out of lactose intolerance or aversion to its taste? Don’t be dismayed – there are other dairy options available. A 2021 study recommended that people who need to go dairy-free should choose fermented milk drinks as an alternative to promote bone health.
Kefir is a great example. This probiotic-rich bottled dairy product (which you can think of as a drinking yogurt) is lactose-free but still contains a lot of calcium. Whole milk kefir also contains a punch of vitamin K2, another major player in bone health. A 2015 study of patients with osteoporosis found that supplementing their diet with kefir for six months was associated with increased bone turnover and increased hip bone mineral density.
Dairy products top the list of all calcium-rich foods, but dark green leafy vegetables are no different. Spinach and kale both contain significant amounts of calcium (although spinach does contain oxalates, which inhibit the body’s ability to absorb calcium). For bone building, kale is a better choice to include in smoothies or green juices.
Put some fresh cabbage in the blender with fortified milk, kefir or yogurt to maximize the calcium and vitamin D content, then sweeten things up with the addition of a banana or orange wedges. Their potassium content can help improve bone mineral density.
Grapefruit juice already has a reputation as a wellness drink. (What else do walnuts drink for health for breakfast?) It turns out that juice may have even more to offer beyond weight loss and skin health benefits. Grapefruit juice can also help maintain strong and sturdy bones.
The fresh, fruity drink contains extremely high amounts of vitamin C, which aids in the production of collagen in the bone matrix and eliminates free radicals that are harmful to bone health. Animal research on the effects of grapefruit juice on bones is particularly promising.
In one study, grapefruit pulp improved bone quality in rats, while in another, grapefruit juice increased bone quality, bone mineral content, and bone turnover. More research is needed to define the impact of juice on humans, but let’s go ahead and drink rose for bone health.
Milk alternatives don’t always offer all the protein from dairy milk, but they are much more than just nut-flavored water. In fact, “milk” like soy, almond, cashew, and macadamia deserve a place in your refrigerator to strengthen bones. These drinks are typically fortified with several nutrients that prevent bone loss, most notably calcium and vitamin D. Consult the nutrition facts label of an alternative milk and you may be surprised to find that it actually contains more of these nutrients than the cow milk!
Among the many types of non-dairy milk on the market, soy milk is a particularly good choice for bone health due to its high protein content, plus plenty of calcium, vitamin D, phosphorus, and magnesium. Eight ounces of Silk’s original soy milk, for example, contains 8 grams of protein (the same as cow’s milk), 30% of the daily value (DV) of calcium, and 15% of the DV of vitamin D.
Along with drinks, here are the 5 best foods to keep bones from aging, says the dietician.