Select Page

A Message From Lesley

A Healthy Bone is a Strong Bone


Bones are strengthened by the addition of minerals, especially calcium and phosphate. Bone structure is similar to a honeycomb and bones are a living tissue. This is important  because bone in the body is broken down and rebuilt throughout your life. This natural process helps keep bone healthy.


The problem is up to the age of 20, we build more bone than we break down, so our bones get bigger and stronger. Age 20-40, the amount broken down and  built back up is equal.  From the age of around 40 we start to break down more than we rebuild. In other words we begin to lose bone density. This is why, as you get older, your bones become less dense and more likely to fracture when injured.

Osteoporosis means “porous bone” and often people only discover this condition when they have a fall and put their hand out to save themselves and fracture a wrist but even coughing, sneezing or twisting can cause a fracture.

In women, oestrogen levels decline rapidly after the menopause, and bone loss is accelerated at this time due to lack of the hormone. In men, the decline is not so rapid.

But your age and gender is not all that affects your bones. Smoking and excess alcohol and caffeine are associated with poor bone health and the absorption of minerals can be affected by certain conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, coeliac disease,  Crohn’s disease and some liver and kidney diseases.

We all know that milk is good for your bones but your diet in general really does affect bone health and just a few changes to what we eat can make a difference. The most obvious nutrients are calcium and vitamin D.

  • 200ml of semi-skilled milk contains about a third of the recommended daily calcium intake.
  • Green leafy vegetables such as kale and broccoli
  • Drinks, cereals, bread fortified with calcium
  • Bony fish such as sardines and mackerel

Vitamin D is found in foods such as an egg yolk and oily fish but it is difficult to get enough Vitamin D from your diet and the most efficient way to make vitamin D in the body is by exposing our skin to sunshine!

The other key ingredient for healthy bones is exercise!! Music to my ears!! As we exercise, we work our muscles harder, this places greater force on the bones and makes them stronger.

Weight bearing exercises offer the greatest benefits for bones and these can range from walking to dancing, running, aerobics, racket sports and ball games. Resistance training is excellent for strengthening bones i.e. squats, push ups, weights or  kettlebells. Everyday activities can help as well such as carrying shopping or gardening.

Exercises to improve your balance are important to reduce the risk of falls and breaking a bone.