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Bone Strength

Your Bones, Your Strength!

We don’t realize the importance of our bones until it’s too late to realize. Our bones are the strength of our body. It’s a whole structure of the body and if it is weak, it means our body is weak. Bone is a rigid tissue that makes up our skeleton. Apart from making the structure, it has many other important functions which sustain our health.

  • Body support,
  • Facilitation of movement,
  • Protection of internal organs,
  • Storage of minerals and fat,
  • Hematopoiesis

Bone is much more than a rigid structure. On its outer surface, it has a membrane called the periosteum. This fibrous membrane has a very important function as it contains blood vessels, nerves, lymphatic vessels that give bone the nourishment it needs. With the periosteum, there are tendons and ligaments attached to the bone.

Role Of Bone In Calcium Homeostasis

For optimum health, homeostasis is very important. All the nutrients must be in balance. One of the important nutrients is calcium. Calcium is not only important for strong bones and teeth but it also plays a role in muscular contractions and relaxations such as heart muscles. Therefore the levels of calcium in the blood must be moderate. Bones keep calcium in the blood within normal range. When the levels of calcium drop in blood parathyroid hormone is released that acts on bones and stimulates the release of calcium in the blood from bones.

Bone Diseases & Disorders

There is a continuous process going on in which bones undergo make and break. However, after 20 years of age, our bones undergo breakdown faster than they are being made. Therefore it is important to have a continuous supply of nutrients to bones and practices that lead to weak bones must be avoided. Conditions that cause bone malfunctioning are:

  • Osteomalacia
  • Osteoporosis
  • Rickets
  • Bone cancer
  • Bone infections
  • Osteogenesis imperfecta

What Are The Tests To Determine Your Bone Health?

The bone mineral density (BMD) is determined to check bone health. A technique used for this is DEXA. It is a type of x-ray that helps to find out any bone fractures or deformities. A bone profile blood test is also done to analyze minerals, enzymes, and proteins present in the bones.

What Causes Bone To Become Weak?

Certain foods and lifestyle practices can lead to weak bones and in severe cases bone deformities. Therefore such practices must be avoided, these include:

  1. Low calcium in the diet, dietary sources of calcium are milk, cheese, yogurt, green leafy vegetables.
  2. Physical inactivity
  3. Smoking
  4. Being underweight
  5. Being overweight
  6. Abuse of medicines
  7. Little or no sun exposure
  8. Consuming excessive caffeine as it has tannins that bind with calcium and make it unavailable to the bones.
  9. Consuming a lot of whole wheat as it has phytates that make calcium unavailable.

Fun Facts!

  • The human body is made up of 206 bones
  • There are 26 bones in the foot
  • The human hand including the wrist has 54 bones
  • The thighbone is the longest and strongest bone
  • The middle ear bone is the smallest
  • Bones stop growing during puberty
  • Bones produce cells

References:

https://www.bidmc.org/about-bidmc/wellness-insights/bones-and-joints/2018/08/fun-facts-about-bones-and-joints

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/in-depth/bone-health/art-20045060

https://medlineplus.gov/bonediseases.html

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