Keep your bones strong with these 10 expert tips to combat a sedentary lifestyle

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Ignoring the impact of sitting at your desk for long periods of time, skipping your daily walk or choosing the couch over a workout can silently wreak havoc on your bone health. A constant feeling of fatigue and sluggishness are subtle signs that your inactivity is negatively affecting both you and your bones.

Bone health is vital to maintaining a strong and mobile body. Being physically active is one of the best ways to support your bones. According to a study published by The Lancet Global Health in the year 2022, 31.3 percent of the world's population is physically inactive. The study included 507 surveys conducted in 163 countries and territories, which found that 33.8 percent of women and 28.7 percent of men fall into this category.

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Exercise not only helps build and maintain bone density but also increases it muscle strengthImproves coordination and balance, which helps prevent falls and related fractures.

As you age, your bones naturally weaken, a process that is made worse by a sedentary lifestyle. “Regular physical activity stimulates bone-forming cells and helps maintain bone mass that can weaken with age,” says Dr Anil R Patil, consultant arthroscopy surgeon and sports medicine specialist at Sparsh Hospital, Bengaluru. He adds that inactivity poses serious health risks, especially for women. “Physical inactivity, especially in the age group of 40-65 years, has a profound negative impact on bone health.”

Here's how physical inactivity can lead to major health problems:

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Chronic back pain: A sedentary lifestyle often involves sitting for long periods of time, which weakens the muscles that support the spine. As a result, Chronic back pain Due to lack of speed and muscle.

Risk of osteoporosis: Bones require regular stress to maintain their strength. Without physical activity, bones can become weak and brittle, increasing the risk of osteoporosis; a condition in which bones become weak.

Inflammatory markers: Excess visceral fat can increase symptoms of inflammation in the body. Chronic inflammation promotes bone resorption and impairs bone formation, leading to weakened bones over time.

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Hormonal changes: Inactivity can lead to weight gain, which affects hormonal balance. Increased estrogen levels in women and decreased testosterone levels in men can have a negative impact on bone density.

Poor diet choices: A diet lacking essential nutrients such as calcium and vitamin D can harm bone health. A diet rich in processed foods fails to provide the components needed to maintain strong bones.

Consider these tips to maintain bone health and combat the negative effects of inactivity:

Exercise regularly: Participating in activities such as walking, resistance training, and strength exercises is essential to maintaining bone density. These exercises stimulate bone formation and help prevent bone loss caused by age or inactivity.

Check your weight: Excessive weight gain can put pressure on bones and joints, increasing the risk of fractures and osteoarthritis. Aim to maintain a stable weight by adopting healthy lifestyle habits.

Maintain a balanced diet: Make sure your diet includes enough protein, calcium, and vitamin D. These nutrients are important for bone health, maintaining bone strength and density. Avoid smoking and limit alcohol consumption, as these also promote better bone health.

stay hydrated: To improve your health, including bone function, drink at least 8 glasses of water per day. Proper hydration aids in nutrient transport and waste removal, leading to better bone health, especially for people who are physically active.

Get yourself tested: Getting regular checkups with your doctor, including bone density testing when recommended, can help monitor bone health and detect early signs of bone-related conditions such as osteoporosis.

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