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Eat Your Kale & Lift Heavy!


Eat Your Kale & Lift Heavy!

Is it possible to get enough calcium with a diet low, or completely void, of dairy products? And does CrossFit, specifically lifting heavy weights, help or inhibit bone density? These are questions that many people unfamiliar with the paleo diet and/or CrossFit ask. It goes back to this paradigm shift in what we’ve always been taught, right? Here is a good blog post from someone in the medical field that does bone density tests and has begun to question some of the questions on their screening form…or at least the reasoning behind the questions.

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I do a lot of bone density tests at work and one of the questions on our screening forms is, “Do you have a diet low in dairy products?” Inevitably, most answer no and then ask me how you’re supposed to get the necessary calcium if you don’t consume dairy products. I find it interesting that the question about exercise is a broad, general question, “Do you exercise?” There is not a specific question asking what type of exercise. So, I thought I’d pass some information on that I’ve found that many people don’t realize.

Good sources of calcium include kale, collard greens, oranges, and almonds just to name a few. In fact, calcium from vegetable sources has shown to be more effective to the body versus calcium from milk. Also, calcium from plants along with the other vitamins and minerals found in the plants increases bone mineral density. Wow!

Did you know that all of the explosive movements and weightlifting we do is actually helping us to keep our bones strong? Bones require skeletal loading to grow and maintain strength. Bones also require dynamic forces acting upon them at different levels of intensity to acquire minerals. Studies have shown that the forces that interact with the skeleton from muscle contraction during weight-bearing exercise actually strengthen bone! Who knew?

While low volume impact activities like running have been shown to be effective, endurance training has been linked to low bone density. Strength training remains the best option for adults wishing to increase bone density. Exercises with jumps, running and more explosive movements have also been shown to be beneficial in maintaining and building bone density. Double Wow!!

The take away from this post is, eat your kale and lift heavy!!

(Source: Black Box Fort Worth)