I have to admit, menopause scares me. Generally, I’m a relatively scare proof person. Pregnancy? Bring it on. Child birth and raising? No problem. Menopause on the other hand – The moment in which my womanhood is essentially over, the moment where my bones begin to turn to dust – is terrifying.
If you feel the same way, you’re probably also going to want to take this advice:
If You Want To Help Your Bone Density In Your Lifetime, Do This
It’s easier than you think, it doesn’t take up a whole lot of your time (which is good because really – Who has a whole lot of time to spare), and it’s guaranteed to help your bones stay strong long after Mother Nature plays her cruel trick on you.
That’s it! All you need to do in order to make sure that your bones retain (and even build) their density is jump.
Okay, so it’s slightly more complicated than that – You need to jump ten times in a row (taking short 30 second breaks in between each jump) twice a day. Jump as high as you can off of the floor (don’t worry about wearing shoes – The idea here is for your body to absorb the shock, not for your shoes to deter it), or jump up and down off of a box (about 15 inches off the floor seems to be the going rate) if you’re looking for something a little more high impact.
A study was done on 60 premenopausal women using the aforementioned technique (with no box) and after only four months their bone mineral density had increased by .5%. Now, that might not seem like a lot at first, but I’m sure you’ll change your mind once you consider that the research control group lost 1.3% of theirs over the same period. Now I don’t know about you, but those numbers kind of scare me. Especially when you consider that five to seven years after menopause hits, women can lose up to 20% or more of their bone density as it is.
You might think that you’re covered if you’re someone that goes running or jogging (or even does HIIT) on a regular basis, but you’re wrong – Because those activities are repeatedly stressing the joints (as opposed to the sudden stress of a big jump followed by a 30 second break), they just don’t have the same effect.
Will It Work For You?
Here’s the thing – It’s really going to depend on your age, weight, and/or activity level. You generally reach your peak bone mass around age 25, and from there it begins to slowly decrease.
You’ll have to do the jumps every single day in order to reap the benefits, and even then there’s no guarantee – The older you are, the harder it is to improve bone density. That’s not to say that if you’re nearing ‘The Change of Life’ that you shouldn’t at least try, it’s just that you’re less likely to see the results than your 25 year old counterpart.
Is It Safe?
While jumping is generally safe in most cases, there are obviously going to be some exceptions. If you’re someone that has hip, knee, ankle, or back problems, you’re probably going to want to consult your healthcare professional before deciding to give this bone building exercise a shot. If you have osteoporosis, you could try consulting your doctor but chances are that he or she is going to tell you to avoid it.
All in all, if you’re a healthy 20, 30, or 40 something woman and you’re looking to take every preventative measure you can in easing into menopause, why not try jumping 20 times a day? Who knows? In addition to building your bone density, you might just end up shedding a few pounds!
Are you taking preventative measures when it comes protecting your bones (they won’t be young forever, you know!)? What else are you doing to keep your bones strong and healthy? We always love hearing from our various readers – Let us know what your story is in the comments section!