Health

3 Ways to Get Stronger Bones Without Meds

Reduce your risk of injuries, fractures, and osteoporosis.

Healthy bones are key to maintaining independence as the years go by. Thankfully, these science-proven tricks not only give you stronger bones, they boost memory, protect your heart and even rev metabolism!

Butter your bread.

Everything tastes better with butter! What’s more, all that deliciousness benefits both your bones and your waistline. Turns out, butter is packed with vitamin K-2, an under-the-radar nutrient that acts like a traffic cop and ushers calcium exactly where it’s needed in bones, reducing your fracture risk by 65 percent, according to a seven-year observational study out of Tufts University.

Bonus: Multiple studies found that a compound called conjugated linoleic acid in butter triggers weight loss by boosting metabolism — especially when folks choose butter over margarine.

Hop for 1 minute.

Exciting research out of the University of Exeter in England finds preventing osteoporosis doesn’t require hours of weekly workouts. The magic amount that makes a difference: just one minute a day. Really! Incorporating little bursts of bone-building activity into your day — say, by hopping in place while you wait for the teakettle to sing — can give you stronger bones even better than long sessions of high-intensity workouts, according to lead author Victoria Stiles, Ph.D.

Bonus: Newly publishes University of Calgary research found that non-exercisers over 60 who began getting their hearts pumping a little every day reversed their brain age by a full five years.

Hum a lullaby.

Our bones rebuild while we sleep, which is why simply getting 7+ hours nightly halves osteoporosis risk. Can’t nod off? Try humming! A simple technique called “the bumblebee breath,” where you hum the letter M while exhaling for as long as possible, triggers nitric oxide in the nose, which works like nature’s sleeping pill. Bonus: A good night’s sleep reduces the risk of heart disease by 58 percent.

This article originally appeared in our print magazine.

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