The times we lead today, shielded by air-conditioned homes and cars, the exposure to sunlight is diminishing to a great extent. As such, more and more urban dwellers are said to be facing deficiency of calcium and vitamin D, leading to bone ailments in the years to come. Maintaining a balanced diet is easier said than done, so the next best bet is supplements to help us meet our daily nutrient requirements.
According to a new study by Hebrew Senior Life's Institute for Aging Research, a Harvard affiliated medical care for elderly in US, older adults who take Vitamin D supplements along with specific dairy foods such as milk, yogurt and cheese may have higher bone mineral density in their spine, guarding them against bone loss in the hip.
(World Osteoporosis Day: Foods That Can Lead to Bone Loss)
The findings, published in The Journal of Nutrition, revealed that Vitamin D stimulates calcium absorption, which is beneficial for building bones and preventing bone loss overtime. The research could lead to better care for people over 50 years of age diagnosed with osteoporosis -- a disease characterised by low bone mass and progressive deterioration of bone tissue.
For those affected, osteoporosis can lead to increased risk of fracture, loss of physical function, decreased quality of life and even death, the researchers said.
"This study is significant because in addition to milk intake, it also examined the association of other dairy foods such as yogurt, cheese and cream with bone mineral density and bone loss over time," said lead author Shivani Sahni.
"Furthermore, the study clarified that the association of dairy foods with bone density is dependent on adequate vitamin D intake," Sahni added.
Have you been taking care of your bone health? Just drinking a glass of milk every day is not good enough. You need more than that. We all know than milk and other dairy products are essential for our health because they help us meet our body's daily calcium requirement. But no matter how many litres of milk you drink, the body can't absorb any amount of calcium without the help of vitamin D. So how do we ensure that we are getting our daily dose of vitamin D? Well, this is where the importance of morning walks come into the picture. Sunlight is the best source of vitamin D, particularly the early morning rays. Even as little as 15 minutes of sunshine can work wonders for your health.