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Which Vitamin is Good for Bones?

  • Author :
  • TATA AIG Team
  • Published on :
  • 26/01/2024
  • 2 min read

Your bones are more than just the framework of your body. They are living tissues that constantly grow, break down, and rebuild throughout your life. They support your muscles, protect your organs, and store essential minerals. Bones also play a vital role in your immune system, blood production, and hormone balance.

But as you age, your bones may become weaker and more prone to fractures. This can lead to chronic health concerns, such as osteoporosis, osteopenia, and arthritis. These conditions can affect your mobility, posture, and quality of life. They can also increase your risk of infections, chronic pain, and depression.

So, how can you keep your bones strong and healthy? One of the most important factors is getting enough of the right bone vitamins.

Vitamins are organic compounds you need in small amounts for various functions. Some are especially beneficial for your bone health, as they help with calcium absorption, bone formation, and bone maintenance.

But which is the best vitamin for bones? Let’s find out.

Vitamins for Strong Bones and Joints

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is usually hailed as the sunshine vitamin. Sunlight exposure allows your skin to produce vitamin D, which is vital for your bones. Vitamin D also helps you get calcium from what you eat and drink. Calcium is the main mineral that forms your bones and teeth. Your bones can become fragile and easily broken if you lack vitamin D.

Vitamin D also helps balance calcium and phosphorus levels in your blood. These minerals are essential for maintaining your bone density and strength. Vitamin D also supports your immune system, muscle function, and nerve health.

Vitamin D Sources: Experts recommend getting 10-15 minutes of sun exposure at least twice a week. However, this may vary depending on skin colour, location, season, and sunscreen use. You can also get this from foods strong in vitamin D, such as egg yolks, fatty fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel), and fortified foods (milk, cereal, orange juice).

Intake: The recommended intake of this vitamin is 600 IU (international units).

Vitamin K

Vitamin K is famous for its ability to clot blood, essential for stopping too much bleeding and healing injuries. But vitamin K also has a vital role in bone health, as it turns on proteins that assist with bone growth and prevent bone loss.

One of these proteins is osteocalcin, which binds calcium to the bone matrix and strengthens the bone structure. Another protein is matrix Gla protein, which inhibits the calcification of delicate tissues, such as blood vessels and cartilage. By doing so, vitamin K protects your bones from losing calcium and your joints from becoming stiff and painful.

Vitamin K Sources: Kale, spinach, broccoli, and cabbage are significant sources of vitamin K. These vegetables contain vitamin K1, also called phylloquinone. Vitamin K1 is mostly used for blood clotting and is easily absorbed by the body.

Another source of this vitamin for bones is fermented foods, such as cheese, yoghurt, natto, and sauerkraut. These foods contain vitamin K2, which is also called menaquinone. Vitamin K2 is mostly used for bone and cardiovascular health and is produced by bacteria in your gut or the food.

Intake: The suggested daily intake of this vitamin for adults is 90 mcg for women and 120 mcg for men.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is a vitamin that works as a potent antioxidant in your body. Antioxidants are like bodyguards for your cells, shielding them from free radicals – unstable molecules that can cause harm and inflammation.

Free radicals can affect your bone tissue and speed up bone loss. Vitamin C plays a role in neutralising these free radicals, helping to prevent oxidative stress.

Vitamin C also helps bone health by synthesising collagen, the main protein in bones and connective tissues. Collagen gives bones flexibility and resilience and helps them heal from injuries. This vitamin further helps with the absorption of iron, which is vital for blood production and oxygen transmission to bones.

Vitamin C Sources: The best way to get vitamin C is from food. Some of the richest sources of this vitamin are oranges, grapefruits, and lemons; berries, such as strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries; and peppers, such as red, green, and yellow peppers.

These foods also contain other nutrients that help your body absorb and use vitamin C, such as flavonoids, carotenoids, and fibre.

Other good sources of vitamin C are broccoli, cauliflower, kiwi, pineapple, and tomatoes.

Intake: Adults' recommended daily vitamin C intake is 75 mg for girls and 90 mg for males. However, you must not take too much vitamin C, which can cause problems such as diarrhoea, nausea, kidney stones, and interference with other vitamins and medications. The maximum capping of vitamin C intake for adults is 2000 mg per day.

Other Minerals Supporting Bone Health

Calcium

is the most abundant mineral in the body and the main component of bones and teeth. It gives bones their strength and hardness and supports bone mineralisation. It also helps with muscle shrinkage, nerve transmission, blood clotting, and enzyme activity.

Calcium Sources: Some of the richest calcium sources are milk, cheese, and yoghurt. These foods also contain other nutrients that help your body absorb and use calcium, such as protein, phosphorus, and vitamin D.

Intake: The suggested daily intake of this mineral for adults is 1000 mg for males and females aged 19-50 and 1200 mg for men and women aged 51 and older.

Magnesium

Magnesium is engaged in over 300 biochemical reactions in your body. Magnesium helps with energy production, protein synthesis, muscle relaxation, nerve function, and blood pressure regulation. It also plays a part in promoting bone density and strength by working in conjunction with calcium and vitamin D.

Intake: Adults' recommended daily magnesium intake is 420 mg for men and 320 mg for women.

Zinc

Zinc is a mineral that is essential for your immune system, wound healing, growth, and development. Zinc also helps with bone health, as it stimulates bone formation, inhibits bone resorption, and enhances the effects of vitamin D and calcium. It also helps with the synthesis of collagen.

Intake: Adults' recommended daily zinc intake is 11 mg for men and 8 mg for women.

Copper

Copper is a trace element that your body requires in minimal amounts. It assists with the production of red blood cells, the maintenance of nerve and immune function, and the activation of enzymes. Copper also helps with bone health by being engaged in the collagen synthesis process.

Intake: The approved daily intake of copper for adults is 900 mcg for men and women.

Glucosamine and Chondroitin

Glucosamine and chondroitin occur inherently in the body, primarily in the connective tissues like cartilage, which serves as a protective layer for bones and provides joint support. They are essential in maintaining the cartilage's structure and function and preventing its breakdown and inflammation.

Several studies have indicated that glucosamine and chondroitin supplements can be safe and effective in preventing or treating conditions like osteoarthritis and other joint issues. These supplements have been found to reduce pain, stiffness, and swelling while also improving mobility and the overall quality of life.

However, other studies have shown conflicting or inconclusive results. Therefore, more research is needed to confirm the benefits and risks of glucosamine and chondroitin supplements for joint health.

Conclusion

Vitamin wards off many bone-related medical issues. But if you already have chronic Osteomyelitis, Osteoporosis, and Rickets, you need to undergo proper medical treatment and solely relying on vitamins for bones won't help.

This is where the role of cashless medical insurance kicks in.

Health insurance plans offer coverage for not only bone-related illnesses but conditions like heart disease, kidney ailments, and cancer as well. You can buy health insurance online after comparing different medical insurance plans for policy inclusions, exclusions, and other features.

FAQS

Which vitamin is essential for calcium absorption?

Vitamin D is vital for calcium retention, as it helps the body absorb calcium from meals you take and supplements you consume.

Which vitamin is involved in bone metabolism and formation?

Vitamin K is engaged in bone metabolism and formation, as it activates certain proteins that help with bone mineralisation and prevent bone loss.

Which vitamin is an antioxidant that may protect bones from damage?

Vitamin C is an antioxidant that may defend bones from damage and stimulate the production of bone-building cells.

Which mineral is the most abundant in the bones and is essential for their strength and density?

Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the bones and is essential for strength and density. You can fulfil your daily body requirement for this mineral either through bone calcium supplements or natural foods.

Which mineral helps the body absorb calcium and stimulates the production of bone-building cells?

Magnesium helps the body absorb calcium and stimulates the production of bone-building cells. Magnesium-rich foods include nuts, seeds, whole grains, and leafy greens.

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