People always say that you should watch what you eat. While it might seem like common sense, it can be difficult to keep this in mind when trying to live healthily. The temptation of certain foods can cause us to forget how these foods affect our overall health.
For women, in particular, certain foods are important to include or avoid when dealing with bone health issues like osteoporosis. No matter what age you are, having the right diet is important.
Thankfully, there are plenty of diet plans for women that will promote good bone health and general living. Many of these plans focus on including or avoiding specific foods that help or harm bone density.
If you’re concerned about the health of your own bones, read on for 12 of the best diet plans for women.
Osteoporosis And Bone Health
Bones are a changing thing in your body. They age and decay just like any other part of it. They are also affected by foods and exercise.
Healthy bones mean that they are strong and heal or grow fast. Younger individuals tend to have healthier bones. As time goes on, bones can become weak and brittle. This is known as osteoporosis.
Even if you don’t have osteoporosis, good bone health is important. For younger individuals, healthy bones means you’ll have a higher peak bone mass or the maximum amount of bone mass you develop before things start to reverse.
Many factors can affect bone health such as physical activity, smoking, and alcohol use, food, your age, and gender. This is why it can be important to find the best diet plans for women who may be at risk or want to fortify their bone mass.
Foods And Diet Plans For Women
Thankfully, none of these diet plans for women require you to drastically change your lifestyle. Many of them will either increase the amount of a certain food or have you avoid something specific. You can typically continue most of your normal eating habits.
Low Sodium Diet
In general, reducing or cutting out high sodium foods like salt is healthy for your body. The body needs a certain amount of sodium on a daily basis, but the average person tends to have too much.
Sodium tends to affect the body’s ability to absorb and process calcium, thus making it difficult to reinforce and grow new bones. Reducing the amount of salt in your diet can bring everything back in balance.
Dairy Focused Diet
One of the most common diet plans for women for healthy bones comes from dairy products.
We’ve always been told while growing up that milk builds strong bones. There’s certainly a lot of truth to this. However, you don’t have to focus just on milk.
Any dairy product tends to have a high amount of calcium. Some of the more healthy options include low-fat milk, yogurt, or even vitamin supplements.
Be sure to avoid dairy if you are lactose intolerant or have a particular allergy.
One food that you may not have thought of is tofu. Tofu is an excellent source of protein and is a great option if you’re trying to avoid meat.
The food is easy to prepare and include in a variety of recipes. You can even use it as a substitute for many popular meat dishes such as turkey. If you are afraid of the lack of flavor, you can add any number of sauces, seasonings, or additions to tailor the flavor to your liking.
Fruits and vegetables come in a wide variety of options. If you’re interested in including a few to increase bone health, there are certain options you should favor over others.
For example, dark leafy greens such as kale, collard greens, and cabbage include high amounts of vitamin K that can reduce the risk for osteoporosis. Other vegetables such as spinach can reduce calcium absorption in the body and should be avoided.
Low Caffeine Diet
Cutting out the caffeine in your life tends to be a healthy choice regardless of your health goals. Many popular diet plans for women will decrease or avoid drinks like soda, coffee, and certain teas.
The problem comes from excess phosphorus which can increase calcium loss if there isn’t enough calcium to rebuild healthy bones. Many other healthy alternatives include natural juices, caffeine free drinks, or even water.
Bring In The Fish
While some meats are avoided in many popular diet plans for women, a certain type can actually help increase bone health: fish. Fish have a high concentration of protein and omega-3 fatty acids, both of which can be beneficial for bone health.
Fish is another food that offers a wide variety of options for preparation. Since many people avoid the fishy smells and tastes, consider adding some seasoning or sauces to dishes like salmon and tilapia.
This one maybe one of the most difficult among the best diet plans for women, since alcohol tends to be popular in social settings. This can make it difficult to avoid. On the other hand, your health should be more important than your beverage or social preferences.
Reducing or eliminating your alcohol intake will eliminate a harmful substance that negatively impacts bone growth. For younger individuals, in particular, alcohol can reduce the peak bone mass you will experience later on around the age of 30. This will make you more at risk for osteoporosis in the future.
Add Some Nuts
Nuts make a great addition to a lot of different types of meals. They also have a wide variety of health benefits such as being a natural source of essential fatty acids.
Almonds and walnuts are particularly good for fighting the risk of osteoporosis. They can be included in many different foods, even crushed up to hide their naturally bland taste. Certain liquid forms such as almond milk are also a good substitute.
Be sure to avoid this diet plan if you have any kind of nut allergy.
Fortified foods are a whole range of foods that manufacturers add additional nutrients such as calcium and vitamin D. Many of these foods range from healthy cereals, snacks, and other brand product foods.
It’s important to read the nutritional labels when working with fortified foods. Each manufacturer is going to add a different amount of the nutrient to their product.
You should also monitor the amount of each nutrient you include in your daily diet. Too much of each nutrient can reduce or eliminate the healthy benefits of the food.
If choosing from these diet plans for women isn’t a strong preference, you can look for calcium and vitamin D supplements instead. These most often come in the form of supplement pills or powders that you can eat individually or include in your normal, everyday meals.
Like the fortified foods, you will want to be sure to read the nutritional labels and monitor a number of nutrients you consume daily. You will want to avoid having too much.
In general, wheat and grain tend to be a healthy source of many important nutrients. Some diet plans for women tend to prefer a higher amount of wheat in particular, especially if they come in whole-grain varieties.
For bone health and the risk of osteoporosis, however, wheat has sulfur compounds that break down into sulfuric acid. This increases the body’s overall acidity which may increase bone loss. You shouldn’t avoid grains altogether, just limit the daily amount.
Well Balanced Diet
One of the best diet plans for women is one of the oldest, a well-balanced diet. This takes the idea that everything should be balanced when you are eating on a daily basis. This means that you aim to eat a wide variety of foods without placing an emphasis on one in particular.
This diet can include an assortment of fruits and vegetables, breads, meats, and dairy. This is a great option to avoid the potential of having too much of the unhealthy stuff.
The best diet plans for women are often the ones that work for you. A diet isn’t going to be effective if it drastically changes your lifestyle and eating habits overnight. Sometimes, these changes can be important, but it’s best to ease into them over time.
If you’re worried about finding the right diet, feel free to consult a professional. They can provide helpful guidance and information to keep you on the right track.
If you want to be sure to stick with the diet, a professional can also keep you motivated and on course. Ultimately, however, it is going to be your own motivation that keeps you on the diet. Remember the benefits you can expect and the risks you’re trying to avoid.
Many foods are going to have a positive or negative effect on your bone health. The best diet plans for women are the ones that help you increase or decrease the amount of these foods. Try a few out and see which ones work for you.