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The Best Foods to Eat & Supplements for Strong Bones 

You’ll want to choose foods with the biggest protein bang for your buck. With that in mind, here are my top-shelf protein-rich foods. You’ll quickly see these nutrient superstars offer far more than just protein. Vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other nutrients complement protein’s benefits for muscle growth and repair, appetite management, blood-sugar balance, and more.  

What you eat is pivotal in supporting bone health to preserve bone strength and prevent the risk of fractures and osteoporosis.  Protein is crucial for maintaining strong bones. Approximately 50% of bone mass is made up of protein (primarily collagen), which provides structural integrity and flexibility and reduces the risk of fractures. Proper protein intake is vital for both building and maintaining bone density, as it aids in calcium absorption, an essential mineral for bone strength. 

1. Wild-Caught Salmon Fish

This fish is rich in high-quality, complete protein, providing all the essential amino acids your body needs for muscle growth, repair, and more. A 5.5-oz serving of cooked wild salmon provides about 30 grams of protein.  

Overall, wild-caught fish tend to have lower contaminants like mercury than some farmed fish. Choose wild-caught fish from sustainable sources to support responsible fishing practices and protect marine ecosystems. 

What Other Nutrients Does It Offer? 

  • Essential fatty acids. Fatty fish like salmon also provide the anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty Studies show that omega-3 fatty acids support heart health, mood, brain function, healthy blood pressure, and muscles.
  • Vitamins and minerals. Wild-caught salmon provides fat-soluble vitamin D, for bone health, selenium which reduces inflammation and supports your immune system.

2. Free-Range Chicken 

Chicken is known as a rich source of high-quality, complete protein to provide all the essential amino acids. A 5-oz serving provides about 30 grams of protein. Remember, you are what you eat, ate. Always choose organic pasture-raised chickens, which are raised without antibiotics or growth hormones. 

What Other Nutrients Does It Offer?  

  • Healthy fats. Organic chickens raised on a pasture-based diet have higher levels of monounsaturated fats, particularly oleic acid, which can support heart health. 
  • Vitamins and minerals. Chicken is a good source of essential vitamins, including B vitamins such as niacin (B3), riboflavin (B2), vitamin B6, and vitamin B12. These vitamins are crucial in energy metabolism, red blood-cell formation, and overall health.Organic pasture-raised chicken is also a good source of minerals, including selenium and zinc.  

3. Pasture-Raised Eggs

 Eggs are an excellent source of protein and many other nutrients. A large, pastured egg typically contains 6-7 grams of complete protein.

What Other Nutrients Does It Offer? 

  • Healthy fats. Egg yolks perfectly balance saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated fats. Each has its benefits. Saturated fats provide stability to cell membranes, monounsaturated fats are heart-healthy, and polyunsaturated fats support brain health and reduce inflammation.
  • Vitamins and minerals. Pastured eggs are rich in vitamins, particularly the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K. These vitamins play crucial roles in immune function, vision, bone health, and blood clotting. The B vitamins in eggs are essential for energy metabolism, red bloodcell formation, and nervous system function. Choline (a B vitamin) supports brain health, liver function, and cell membrane structure.  Selenium is an antioxidant, protecting cells from damage, while phosphorus is essential for bone health and energy metabolism.  

Note: Don’t make them an everyday protein source or they can become a food intolerance. 

4. Almonds 

Almonds are relatively high in protein compared to other nuts: about 21% of the calories in almonds come from protein. One ounce of almonds provides about 6 grams of protein.  

What Other Nutrients Does It Offer? 

  • Healthy fats. Almonds are also rich in heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, primarily oleic acid, to support heart health.  
  • Fiber. Like many other plant foods,almonds provide soluble and insoluble fiber to support gut health and appetite control. One ounce of almonds provides about 3-4 grams of fiber. Soluble fiber dissolves in water and forms a gel-like substance, which can help manage cholesterol levels and stabilize blood-sugar levels, and also promotes satiety for weight loss. It supports regular bowel movements, prevents constipation, and supports digestive health. 
  • Vitamins and minerals. Almonds are a good source of several vitamins, including the antioxidant vitamin E and energy-supporting B vitamins like riboflavin (B2) and niacin (B3). Magnesium is a powerhouse mineral that supports bone health, mood, muscle function, blood-sugar balance, and more. Manganese supports enzyme function and bone health. 
  • Antioxidants. The flavonoids and other phytochemicals in almonds help protect cells from oxidative damage caused by free radicals, which can also help lower chronic inflammation. 

5. Quinoa 

Quinoa is one of the few plants that provide complete protein. A seed (not a grain), quinoa contains about 15% protein, making it a plant-based heavyweight. One cup of cooked quinoa provides about 8 grams of protein.  

What Other Nutrients Does It Offer? 

  • Fiber. Quinoa provides soluble and insoluble fiber to support digestion, satiety, bowel regularity, and blood-sugar balance. A cup of cooked quinoa contains 5-6 grams of fiber. 
  • Healthy fats. Quinoa contains a small amount of heart-healthy oleic acid, a monounsaturated fat.  
  • Vitamins and minerals. B vitamins like riboflavin (B2), vitamin B6, folate (B9), and minerals including magnesium and manganese make quinoa a nutrient powerhouse.  

6. Flax Seed 

This seed is a good source of plant-based protein: they are about 20-25% protein by weight. One ounce of freshly ground flax seeds provides about 5 grams of protein. 

What Other Nutrients Does It Offer? 

  • Healthy fats. Flax seeds are renowned for their omega-3 fatty acids, specifically alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which are beneficial for heart health, brain function, and reducing inflammation. 
  • Fiber. Flax seeds are high in soluble and insoluble fiber. An ounce of freshly ground flax seed provides 7-8 grams of fiber. 
  • Vitamins and minerals. Essential vitamins, including B vitamins like thiamin (B1), riboflavin (B2), and niacin (B3), support energy metabolism. Minerals like magnesium, phosphorus, and manganese support bone health and enzyme function.  
  • Lignans. Flax seeds also provide phytoestrogens called lignans, a type of phytonutrient with antioxidant properties. Among their benefits, lignans may improve cardiovascular health. Flax seeds provide 800 times more cancer-fighting lignans than any other food, which may protect against breast and prostate cancers. Lignans also bind to estrogen and help remove excess amounts.  
  • Antioxidants. The antioxidants in flax seeds, including phenolic compounds, protect cells from oxidative damage and reduce inflammation. 

7. Chia Seeds 

Chia seeds are among plant foods and are protein champs: they are about 14-17% protein by weight. Chia seeds contain all nine essential amino acids, making them a complete protein. An ounce of chia seeds provides about 4 grams of protein. 

What Other Nutrients Does It Offer? 

  • Healthy fats. Chia seeds provide the omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). 
  • Fiber. An ounce of chia seeds provides 10-11 grams of fiber. 
  • Vitamins and minerals. Chia seeds provide B vitamins and minerals like magnesium. They’re surprisingly rich in calcium: chia seeds have more calcium by weight than most dairy products. 

8. Lentils 

Lentils are an excellent source of plant-based protein: around 25-30% of their calories come from protein. A cup of cooked lentils provides about 18 grams

What Other Nutrients Does It Offer? 

  • Fiber. Lentils are rich in soluble and insoluble fiber: a one-cup serving of cooked lentils can contain 15-16 grams of fiber.  
  • Vitamins and minerals. Lentils are excellent sources of B vitamins, especially folate. They also contain thiamin (vitamin B1), pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), and vitamin B6. Minerals include magnesium and potassium. 
  • Antioxidants. Flavonoids, polyphenols, and phytochemicals in lentils help protect cells from oxidative damage and reduce inflammation. Their low glycemic index means lentils have a minimal impact on blood-sugar levels. 

9. Chickpeas

also known as garbanzo beans, are a good source of plant-based protein: about 15% of the calories come from protein. One cup of cooked chickpeas provides 15 grams of protein. Like lentils, chickpeas have a minimal impact on blood-sugar levels thanks to their fiber content. 

What Other Nutrients Does It Offer? 

  • Fiber. One cup of chickpeas also provides an impressive 12-13 grams of fiber.  
  • Vitamins. Nutrients include folate (vitamin B9), thiamin (vitamin B1), vitamin B6, vitamin K, and minerals like phosphorus, manganese, and potassium.  
  • Antioxidants. Flavonoids, polyphenols, and various plant compounds (including saponins and phytosterols) in chickpeas can help lower inflammation and provide many other health benefits.  

10. Black Beans 

This bean is a popular legume and a staple in many cuisines. About 20-25% of the calories in black beans come from protein. One cup of cooked black beans provides about 15 grams of protein. 

What Other Nutrients Does It Offer? 

  • Fiber. A cup of cooked black beans has about 15 grams of fiber.  
  • Vitamins and minerals. B vitamins in black beans, including folate (vitamin B9), thiamin (vitamin B1), vitamin B6, and niacin (vitamin B3), support energy metabolism. Their minerals—including iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium—support muscle and nerve function, bone health, healthy blood pressure, and more.  
  • Antioxidants. Anthocyanins, quercetin, and kaempferol in black beans help protect cells from oxidative damage and reduce inflammation. 


1. Calcium

This supplement is vital for strong bones and teeth, serving as a key component in the bone matrix and enhancing bone structure and strength. During life stages like menopause, maintaining adequate calcium intake is crucial. It plays an essential role in preserving bone density, lowering the risk of osteoporosis, and supporting overall bone health by retaining bone mass and enhancing strength.

Best Calcium Foods for Bone Health: 

  • Canned fish with bones: Canned fish like salmon and sardines with their soft, edible bones are excellent sources of calcium. The bones are a good source of both calcium and vitamin D. 
  • Almonds: Almonds are a great non-dairy source of calcium. They also offer additional nutrients like vitamin E and magnesium.
  • Leafy greens: Dark leafy greens like kale and bok choy are rich in calcium and provide a range of other vitamins and minerals beneficial for bones.
  • Legumes: Beans, lentils, and chickpeas contain calcium to support healthy bones.  

2.    Magnesium

This is an essential mineral, is involved in over 300 biochemical reactions, including those critical for muscle and nerve function, blood-sugar control, blood-pressure regulation, and protein synthesis. Crucially, magnesium contributes to bone health by maintaining the structural integrity of bones, promoting resilience and strength, particularly during menopause. This mineral works in tandem with calcium to preserve bone density and strength, making it indispensable for reducing fracture risks and osteoporosis. Furthermore, magnesium is vital for activating vitamin D, necessary for effective calcium absorption.

Best Magnesium Foods for Bone Health: 

  • Leafy greens: Spinach, kale, Swiss chard, and collard greens are excellent sources of magnesium.
  • Nuts: Almonds, cashews, and peanuts are rich in magnesium as well as protein and healthy fats.
  • Seeds: Pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, and flaxseeds are magnesium-packed options.

3. Zinc

Zinc is an essential mineral involved in immune-system support, wound healing, food metabolism, and collagen production. Zinc’s contribution to collagen formation ensures that bones remain strong, so they’re better equipped to withstand external pressures. Strong bones decrease your risk of fractures, promoting overall bone health during menopause.  Zinc also actively participates in the mineralization process, which involves depositing essential minerals like calcium and phosphorus into the bone matrix. These minerals contribute to bone hardness and durability.

Best Food Sources of Zinc for Bone Health: 

  • Poultry: Chicken and turkey are excellent sources of zinc.
  • Legumes: Beans, lentils, and chickpeas offer zinc, fiber, and other essential nutrients. 
  • Nuts and seeds: Cashews, pumpkin seeds, and hemp seeds contain zinc.

4. Vitamin D

Your Body has 30 trillion cells. They ALL Need Vitamin D.  Every cell in your body benefits from Vitamin D. That’s because at the core of each of those 30 trillion cells is a vitamin D receptor. That’s important because these receptors act as switches that trigger vital functions such as immune strength, bone health, mood balance and more. And Vitamin D is the ONLY thing that can activate these switches.  In fact, without a steady supply of this essential nutrient, these functions will slow down, waver, and eventually cease to operate effectively. That’s why your body’s well-being hinges on vitamin D. 

We want you to live a functional life that is filled with more energy and fuel your body with quality foods that provide the nutrients we need. Our goal is to ultimately empower our patients to maintain the healthiest way of living. With a bit of work, we can achieve optimal health together, no matter the age, ability, or disability.

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The information is not intended to provide or be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

It is for informational purposes only.