Bones and Spine Health
The adult skeletal system (axial and appendicular) is made up of over 206 individual bones. A healthy diet has a lot to do with how your bones develop into your adult self. In utero, a fetus has a flexible skeleton made up of cartilage tissue. At birth, babies are born with up to 300 bones that develop and fuse over time. Bone formation is based on the diet of of both the mother and the child over the course of the first few years of life and extending into your early twenties.
The Axial skeleton includes the skull, hyoid, ribs, and sternum. The axial skeleton acts as a hard shell of protection for our organs. The appendicular skeleton includes your upper and lower limbs, pelvic girdle and shoulders. It supports and and provides flexibility for our joints, mussels, and limbs. Bone and spine health are important for longterm mobility and body function.
Follow these basic practices for better spine health.
The spinal cord is considered to be an "information highway", which connects the peripheral nervous system to the brain. It is protected by 31 vertebrae. At each segment of bone a pair of spinal nerves branch out. The spinal cord receives information from sensory and motor neurons. Sensory receptors send information along sensory neurons to the spinal cord. From here it is passed via interneurons to motor neurons that lead to muscles in the body and causes movement. Sensory neurons can also send information through the spinal cord to the brain stem, to be processed by the thalamus, the sensory switchboard of the brain except for smell. The olfactory system consists of two parallel systems One that processes and relays chemical signals through smell and the perception of that odor is in parallel connects this to areas of the limbic system that connects senses and smells to emotions and memories. (Bailey)
A joint is a place where two or more bones meet. They are connected by ligaments. Joints allow movement, much like a door hinge, which allows the axis of movement. Low impact exercise is a good way to keep your joints moving, strong, and well maintained.
Bailey, Regina. “Olfactory System - Sense of Smell.” ThoughtCo, 17 August 2021, https://www.thoughtco.com/olfactory-system-4066176. Accessed 25 February 2022.
“Exercises to relieve back pain and strengthen the back | SpineNevada - Reno, Sparks, Carson City.” Spine Nevada, https://spinenevada.com/education/back_exercises.html. Accessed 19 November 2022.
“Know your brain: Thalamus.” Neuroscientifically Challenged, https://neuroscientificallychallenged.com/posts/know-your-brain-thalamus. Accessed 14 October 2022.
Wu, Jennifer. “Your Baby's Skeleton: How Many Bones Does a Baby Have?” What to Expect, 16 June 2021, https://www.whattoexpect.com/pregnancy/fetal-development/fetal-bones-skeletal-system/. Accessed 10 Jan 2021.W
Foods For Bone & Joint Health
Garlic, leeks, and onions; all contain a powerful sulfur compound that fights inflammation and pain.
-Apples; contain quercetin, which helps build collagen, a main component of cartilage.
-Almonds; contain omega 3 which reduces inflammation, vitamin E which is an antioxidant that protects the body from damage and manganese which helps glucosamine work quicker and more effectively as it repairs joints.
-Chia; the seeds are excellent sources of omega 3 fatty acids and essential animo acids the body needs to repair muscle, ligaments, tendons and cartilage.
-Pineapples; the enzyme, bromeliad, has anti-inflammation effects and reduces pain. It's great for sprains, bruises, and cuts too.
-Papayas; have vitamin C, vitamin A, and enzymes similar to pineapple. Vitamin C reduces the likelihood of developing arthritis and vitamin A acts as another antioxidant to reduce pain.
-Extra Virgin Olive Oil; have antioxidants and omega 3 fatty acids to reduce inflammation and pain.
-Red Bell Pepper; all peppers have vitamin C, but the red bell pepper contains plenty of vitamin A and K and phytonutrients that acts antioxidant.
-Bananas; they contain potassium which has been linked to joint health and deficiencies can result in arthritis. They also help with weight loss, leaving you fuller longer.
-Avocados; are full of powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatories.
-Turmeric; cur-cumin is the component that gives this spice it's bright yellow color, is a potent anti-inflammatory that is being studied in its ability to combat heart disease, arthritis, and cancer.
-Ginger; is anti-inflammatory, it has been used as medicine in Asia.
Foods To AvioD
-Red meat; too much protein is actually bad for you and can cause damage to joints.
-Dairy; is a known allergen that can cause inflammation and arthritis symptoms.
-Caffeine; this dehydrates you and pulls minerals from the body. It has also been linked to joint pain.
-Saturated fats; these fats are usually found in animal products and contribute to weight gain, putting additional stress on the joints. These also cause inflammation and contribute to heart disease.
-Tran fats; these are as just as damaging as saturated fats, they also cause weight gaining and carry free radicals that damage the body. They have been linked to cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.
-Soy; can cause inflammation and other problems. Chia seeds and hempseed are better sources of protein.