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14 Facts About Healthy Bones

Health     First Posted: 03/24/11 09:38 AM ET   Updated: 05/25/11 07:40 PM ET

It's easy to take bones for granted and ignore them until you break one or are diagnosed with bone-thinning in old age.

In fact, you may not really consider your bones a resource that needs lifelong protection and nurturing.

But guess what? There are a few surprises lurking inside your bones, and youthful habits can even affect bones in old age. Read on to find out more about this living -- yes, they're alive! -- tissue.

Your Bones Are Alive
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They may feel like rocks, but bones are living things. In fact, a group of cells (called osteoblasts) are constantly churning out new bone, while a second set (called osteoclasts) destroys bone by gobbling it up like Pac-Man.

This constant tug of war between creation and destruction is called bone remodeling.

It's the reason bones regenerate after a break, grow rapidly during youth, and, unfortunately, decline later in life when the balance tips toward destruction.
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Filed by Nicholas Miriello  |