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On the early end, this is the decade when the dreaded "p" word—perimenopause—could start showing up. After reaching your peak bone mass at around age 30
, the "perimenopause years are really important for making strides to preserve bone health," says Wagner. While calcium is important, even more critical is vitamin D. One-quarter of women in this age group runs low in D,
a vitamin that helps your body absorb calcium. If you have a family history of osteoporosis, ask your doctor if a calcium supplement is also needed, says Wagner; otherwise, turn to food sources, like green leafy vegetables or canned salmon for calcium. D is in some foods, like fortified dairy and canned sardines, but you may need a supplement to get your levels up, says Wagner.
How much to take:
Aim for 1,000 to 2,000 IU daily. However, it's best to get a blood test at the doctor's office to check your levels before supplementing, as you may need a higher dose in the short-term, says Wagner.