From the 3-10 August it’s Healthy Bones Action Week. This week, for the last 20 years has been empowering Australians to talk about the issue of bone health and osteoporosis. Currently osteoporosis affects 1.2 million Australians and this number is expected to increase as our population continues to age. Brittle bones can lead to serious fractures which can cause chronic pain, disability and loss of independence.
Women are at greater risk of developing osteoporosis because of the rapid drop in the hormone oestrogen during menopause and, because of this, osteoporosis affects more than 1 in 5 women over the age of 65, compared to 1 in 20 men. The good news is, if you take some simple actions and lead a healthy lifestyle, you can give your bones the best chance of remaining strong.
According to the Australian Dietary Guidelines recommendations, older adults need to be particularly mindful of meeting the required daily dairy intake. Dairy food is one of the five core food groups and includes milk, cheese, yogurt and/or alternatives. A serve is simply a 250ml glass of milk, a 200g tub of yogurt, or 2 slices (40g) of cheese. It is recommended that women aged over 50 should consume 4 serves of dairy each day, while men aged over 70 consume 3 ½ serves of dairy foods per day.
The simplest way to ensure you are getting enough calcium is to start and end your day with dairy foods. This could include yogurt and milk at breakfast and cheese and biscuits or a generous helping of custard after dinner. And, remember that lattes and smoothies are a great, calcium-rich boost at any time of day!
Want to know if you or your patients are taking enough calcium? Dairy Australia have created a Dietary Calcium Planner – CLICK HERE to checkout this online tool.