bone density test (BMD—bone mineral density test). It measures bone density in various parts of your body. It’s safe and painless and can detect bone issues before a fracture occurs. This test can also predict a person’s chances of fracturing in the future.
So, what can you do to keep your bones healthy, whether you do or do not have breast cancer?
- Make sure you are getting enough calcium! Women older than 50 should get 1,200 milligrams of calcium each day. Men should get 1,000 mg. Make foods that are high in calcium part of your diet: dairy products such as low-fat milk, yogurt, and cheese, calcium-fortified orange juice, dark green leafy vegetables such as broccoli, spinach, collard greens, and bok choy, tofu, almonds, vitamin-fortified cereal and calcium supplements.
- Make sure you are getting enough Vitamin D! This helps your body absorb calcium. The current recommendation is that all people get 600 international units (I.U.) of vitamin D per day, no matter how old they are. Your body makes vitamin D when you’re in sunlight, but if you’re indoors most of the time or live in areas where sunlight is limited, add foods rich in vitamin D to your diet: vitamin D-fortified milk, herring, salmon, and tuna and vitamin-fortified cereal. If you’re going to take a vitamin D supplement, most experts recommend taking the D3 form of the vitamin, not the D2 form.
- Limit or avoid alcohol! Heavy drinking increases the risk of bone loss.
- Quit smoking! Smoking weakens bones and can lead to osteoporosis.
- MOVE YOUR BODY! Exercise makes your bones and muscles stronger and helps slow bone loss. Do 30 minutes of weight-bearing exercise 3-4 times a week for maximum bone health benefits: walking, jogging, stair climbing, dancing and lifting weights
Dr. Kordai DeCoteau, board certified podiatrist in Essex county, NJ says, “Bone health is important for providing a stable framework work, muscle attachment and preserving calcium. Having said that these are important factors : calcium and vitamin D rich diet to prevent fractures, weight bearing physical activity to reduce risk of osteoporosis, avoiding tobacco & alcohol which can cause bone weakness, and some medications used to treat breast cancer.”
We can help you MOVE YOUR BODY! Join TOUCH, The Black Breast Cancer Alliance in our #LoveYourBones Campaign.
Join us every weekday at 3pm EST in October for our #LoveYourBones #DanceBreak! Get your groove on with us on zoom (https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83927598943). Take five minutes (one song) every day to build bone strength and have a little fun!
Walk and dance with us on Halloween, 10/31 with your dog, cat, cute kid, honey or whoever. GirlTrek Maven Amanda Doty and metathriver Karen Sock will lead us in a FREE virtual walk/dance costume party from 11am to 12:3pm EST. Win prizes for the best costumes, the best dance moves, the longest distance walked in 90 minutes and your best Thriller dance. Strengthen your bones while walking and dancing with us. We are ecstatic to partner with GirlTrek, as they pioneer a health movement for African-American women and girls grounded in civil rights history and principles through walking campaigns, community leadership, and health advocacy. Email us at [email protected] if you want to lead a socially distancing team in your area. We will be broadcasting LIVE on the BlackDoctor.org Facebook Page.
When it comes to Black Breast Cancer, like most things, “bone health is an area that needs more intensive research. The adverse effects of anti-estrogen therapy on our bones, as well as the risk and benefit of agents to treat bone mets needs to be studied in greater detail, and the ways that we can prevent fractures from cancer in the bones explored. Translation: we need more clinical trial research,” says Dr. Gary.
For now, just do the right things to #LoveYourBones.