Our musculoskeletal system is made up of bones, muscles, and joints along with tendons, ligaments, and cartilage. Keeping this system healthy is vital to remain mobile into old age. Broken bones, hip fractures and other mishaps can rob people of their independence which is why good bone health is critical.
Can yoga help back pain?
Yoga is a cost-effective way of treating people with recurrent lower back pain, according to the UK's largest ever study looking at the benefits of yoga. Researchers from The University of York found that people with back pain who took part in a yoga programme took just four days off work for back pain compared to their non-yoga-doing peers who took 12 days off with back ache. Reason indeed to perfect that half lotus.
Calcium is essential for good bone health - but do we need supplements?
Our bones and teeth contain calcium but each day we lose calcium through sweat, urination and faeces and our bodies cannot produce new calcium. The only way we can get this is by eating calcium-rich foods or taking supplements. There had been concern that calcium supplements increased the risk of cardiovascular disease, but a panel of experts met recently in Washington to review this and concluded that supplements were safe. That said, supplements should only be used to make up any shortfall in your diet. Women aged 19-50 and men up to 71 need 1,000 milligrams of calcium daily, rising to 1,200 milligrams for women over 50 and men 71 plus. Calcium is found in dairy products and green vegetables, while some juices, cereals, breads and bottled water have calcium added. To absorb calcium you also need vitamin D which you can get from sunlight, from eating fatty fish like salmon and by taking supplements.