One of the challenges women face as we go through the menopausal transition is maintaining our height. We actually start losing slightly less than half-an-inch every 10 years after we reach the age of 40 and ultimately can lose up to three inches of our stature as we age.
It turns out that our loss of height during this time period is often due to vertebral fractures caused by osteoporosis. Additionally, our changing hormones also may cause our spines to lose height between the intervertebral discs.
So what can you do to protect your height? Here are some suggestions:
Eat a bone-healthy diet. Be sure to eat a wide-ranging diet that includes low-fat and non-fat dairy products, canned sardines and salmon with bones, fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, tuna and sardines), collard greens, turnip greens, kale, okra, Chinese cabbage, dandelion greens, mustard greens, broccoli, spinach, beet greens, okra, tomato products, artichokes, plantains, potatoes, sweet potatoes, collard greens, raisins, papaya, oranges, orange juice, bananas, prunes, red peppers, green peppers, grapefruits, strawberries, Brussels sprouts, pineapple, and foods fortified with calcium and vitamin D.
Limit alcohol consumption. Excessive alcohol disrupts your calcium balance and ability to produce vitamin D. Having too much to drink also increases parathyroid hormone levels, which reduces your body’s reserve of ca