Article | Foundr MAGAZINE

Strong Bones, Happy Life: The Morning Routine You Need to Try

one health should be on everyone’s wellness checklist, no matter your age. Foundr Magazine shares expert tips to maintain strong bones. When it comes to daily wellness, we often overlook the importance of bone health until issues arise. However, taking proactive steps to bolster your bone health is crucial. If you’re under 30, you have a unique advantage in building peak bone mass, which sets the foundation for strong bones throughout life.

Morning routine

The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) suggests that by maximizing your bone size and strength early, you can significantly reduce the risk of osteoporotic fractures later in life. This risk is closely tied to achieving peak bone mass at skeletal maturity and how age-related and postmenopausal bone loss affects it.

For those above the age of 30, it’s not too late to start. Regardless of age and gender, everyone can benefit from adopting healthy habits that minimize bone loss and maintain muscle mass as they age. The key to sustaining these habits lies in incorporating them into your morning routine. Foundr Magazine spoke to Dr. Kathy Nguyen, a sports medicine primary care physician with Memorial Hermann Medical Group in Sugar Land, Texas, to discover effective morning rituals that support bone health.

  1. Prioritize Calcium and Vitamin D-Rich Breakfasts

Calcium is renowned for its role in bone health, and Dr. Nguyen emphasizes the importance of starting your day with this essential mineral. However, vitamin D is equally crucial because it enhances the absorption of calcium in your body. Inadequate vitamin D levels can limit your body’s ability to absorb dietary calcium, making it essential to maintain adequate vitamin D intake.

Dr. Nguyen advises incorporating calcium and vitamin D-rich foods into your morning meal. For those who prefer dairy, options like Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, and low-fat milk are excellent choices. If dairy isn’t part of your diet, there are plant-based alternatives such as kale, turnip greens, broccoli, and tofu that are rich in calcium. To ensure a well-rounded breakfast for bone health, Dr. Nguyen suggests adding healthy fats and lean proteins.

Vitamin D sources include eggs, fortified cereals, milk, and juices. Salmon is an excellent choice as it not only provides vitamin D but is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids. These fatty acids help prevent bone decay and enhance bone mineralization. Dr. Nguyen recommends adding salmon to your breakfast menu, possibly alongside calcium-rich plant-based options, for a bone-boosting start to your day.

  1. Limit Added Sugars in Your Morning Routine

Dr. Nguyen strongly advises against sugary breakfast pastries and overly sweet coffee. Reducing your consumption of added sugars and artificial sweeteners can lead to a healthier diet and promote proper calcium and vitamin D absorption. Furthermore, limiting morning sweets can set a healthier tone for your meals throughout the day. Studies have shown that consuming added and artificial sweeteners from processed foods can reduce the intake of healthier options like fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy.

  1. Soak Up the Morning Sun for Vitamin D

While obtaining vitamin D through dietary sources can be challenging, morning sunlight offers an effective alternative. Vitamin D plays a crucial role in calcium absorption and overall bone health. Spending a few minutes in the morning sun, unless overcast, can boost your vitamin D levels. Vitamin D is critical for calcium absorption, so direct sunlight exposure either by going outside or sitting by a sunny window is highly beneficial.

The amount of sunlight needed varies based on factors such as skin pigmentation, age, location, season, time of day, and the extent of exposed skin. To give you an idea, a person with a fair complexion may require just a few minutes of sun exposure at noon during the summer in Miami with a quarter of their skin exposed. In contrast, the same person would need 23 minutes to two hours of exposure at noon in Boston during the winter, depending on factors like the extent of skin exposure.

  1. Incorporate Morning Resistance Training

Dr. Nguyen recommends starting your day with resistance training to support bone strength. Investing in resistance bands or dedicating 15 to 30 minutes to a morning gym session or strength training class can have a significant impact. These activities stimulate calcium deposition in your bones through loading, contributing to bone strength. The AAOS recommends at least 30 minutes of weight-bearing activity on four or more days a week to maintain bone health.

Incorporating these morning rituals into your daily routine can significantly enhance your bone health, ensuring that you’re better prepared to maintain strong bones throughout your life. Whether you’re under 30 and building peak bone mass or above 30 looking to minimize bone loss, these habits can make a remarkable difference.

Foundr Magazine encourages everyone to prioritize bone health by making these morning rituals a part of their daily lives. Strong bones are the foundation of a healthy and active lifestyle, and it’s never too early or too late to invest in your bone health.

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