To Your Health
January, 2023 (Vol. 17, Issue 01)
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Diet Reduces Fracture Risk

By Editorial Staff

Women, listen up: What you eat (or don't eat) can influence your risk of suffering a hip fracture – a dangerous / debilitating bone break, particularly with age. A new study suggests a few simple additions to your daily diet could be key.

Do you know what they are? Perhaps they're already staples of your diet. Let's take a look at recent study findings on the subject; you might be surprised by what researchers discovered.

While calcium and vitamin D are often regarded as the primary facilitators of bone strength, many people fail to get enough of either micronutrient through diet alone; and don't compensate by supplementing with either, much less both. Fortunately, researchers have found that increasing your daily intake of protein and tea or coffee benefits bone health as well.

Published in Clinical Nutrition, the study evaluated diet and hip fracture risk among women ages 35-69 at study entry. Researchers provided all women with a questionnaire at baseline that gathered data on diet and lifestyle; then tracked hip fractures / hip replacements over the next two-plus decades via hospital records.

healthy diet - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark A 25 g daily increase in protein from any source was associated with a nearly 15 percent reduction in hip fracture risk; while every additional cup of tea or coffee per day was associated with a 4 percent lower risk of fracture. These findings were particularly significant in underweight women (who are at increased risk for fracture based on previous research).

Interestingly, "There was no clear evidence of an association between hip fracture risk and dietary calcium (per 300 mg/day), vitamin D (per μg/day), or any other food intakes." That's not to say calcium and vitamin D aren't important in bone health; just that they did not appear to reduce hip fracture risk in this study compared to increasing protein and coffee / tea intake. Talk to your doctor for more information about a game plan for lifelong bone health.