What you eat plays a big role in whether you're getting the nutrients you need to build strong bones
. What might surprise you, though, is that your diet can also play a role in sapping bone strength. Some foods actually leach the minerals right out of the bone, or they block the bone's ability to regrow.
Here, the six biggest bone-sappers:
Salt saps calcium from the bones, weakening them over time. For every 2,300 milligrams of sodium you take in, you lose about 40 milligrams of calcium, dietitians say. One study compared postmenopausal women who ate a high-salt diet with those who didn't, and the ones who ate a lot of salt lost more bone minerals. Our American diet is unusually salt-heavy; most of us ingest double the 2,300 milligrams of salt we should get in a day, according to the 2005 federal dietary guidelines.
What to do:
The quickest, most efficient way to cut salt intake
is to avoid processed foods. Research shows that most Americans get 75 percent of their sodium not from table salt but from processed food. Key foods to avoid include processed and deli meats, frozen meals, canned soup, pizza, fast food such as burgers and fries, and canned vegetables.
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