A balanced diet combined with exercise is important to a healthy lifestyle. However, it is less known that these same factors can have a large impact on the health of your spine. The spine has to support the entire upper torso, be able to twist, bend, and perform other motions. Like the rest of your body, the spine needs the proper nutrients to maintain a healthy spine.
How Supplements, Vitamins, and Minerals Can Improve Spine Health
In addition to a healthy all-around diet, there are a number of vitamins and minerals that are critical for a healthy spine by ensuring that the bones, muscles, discs, and other tissues all receive the nutrients that they need to function well.
Calcium is critical for spinal health as it is a major contributor to ensuring proper bone mass. Getting enough calcium in your diet to keep your bones from deteriorating and exhibiting signs of osteoporosis, which increase risk of spinal fractures. Calcium can be found in a number of foods, including leafy greens, almonds, oranges, salmon and dairy.
Vitamin D3 goes hand-in-hand with calcium as it is critical for its absorption. Without enough vitamin D, bones will not be able to grow strong and will quickly deteriorate and become thin and brittle. Vitamin D3 is found in salmon, egg yolks, liver, and some milks, but it can be hard to obtain enough of it in your daily diet, so if you have low D3, a vitamin supplement can make a difference in your spinal health.
Magnesium is a key mineral for bone density in the spine. Magnesium is used for hundreds of reactions throughout the body, and if it is lacking, it will be pulled out of the bones. This mineral is also important in the relaxing and contracting of muscles, so a deficiency in it can prevent proper muscle strengthening. Magnesium is found in leafy vegetables, as well as fish, beans, nuts, avocados and bananas.
Other nutrients that play an important role are:
- Vitamin B12: Responsible for keeping calcium in the bones, found in meats, cheeses, and eggs.
- Vitamin C: Helps to form collagen, which holds the muscles, bones, tissues, and tendons together. It is also needed for healing injuries. Vitamin C is found in mainly fruits and vegetables.
There are many minerals that play a role in ensuring proper spinal health, and taking supplements is a great way to be sure you are getting enough of each of them. Supplements can be found for each vitamin and mineral individually, but there are many daily vitamins that include all of the necessary ones.
Eat and Exercise Your Way to a Healthier Back
Proper nutrition and a healthy lifestyle are critical for spinal health. Watching the foods that you eat, how much water you drink, and the nutrients you consume can not only help you look and feel better as a whole, but they can have a direct impact on the health of your spine.