Osteoporosis is a slow disease that is characterized by the slow deterioration of bone tissues and low bone mass. It is a very common disease and happens to most of us as we grow old. This disease does not cause us direct harm or injury but the weakening of bones makes them vulnerable to breaking and fractures.
The bones that get the most affected are the hips, ribs, wrist bones, and spine. But there are some ways through which we can battle this disease to some extent. As this is such a common disease and we can easily find at least one case in every household it is very important to know how to prevent osteoporosis. In this article, we will get to know about the ways to prevent osteoporosis.
Who Can Get Osteoporosis?
It is often believed that women get osteoporosis and men don’t. This is a misconception and we should know that both men and women can suffer from osteoporosis.
It is believed so because (the decaying of bones in women) starts early and rapidly during their menopause, or we can also say that bones in men have more density from the beginning so their decaying takes a bit longer than in women. So, the frequency of this disease is more in women than men.
When Can We Get Osteoporosis?
The bones reduce or stop making new tissues from the early ’40s and then the old tissues start decaying, so anyone over the age of 40 should keep a check on the health of their bones and take necessary steps for osteoporosis prevention. The disease starts showing prominent signs after the age of 60 years.
What Causes Osteoporosis?
Aging is one main cause of osteoporosis, other than that here are a few causes of the disease
1. Genetics, i.e., someone in the family has a history of the disease.
2. Early menopause in women.
3. Smoking and alcohol consumption
4. Deficiency of calcium or vitamin D or both.
5. Using certain kinds of medication for a long time.
Symptoms and Diagnosis
Osteoporosis shows no or very few signs and symptoms and one needs to recognize them early enough for the prevention of osteoporosis. Here are a few signs which will help you to recognize the disease:
1. Back pain or pain in the vertebral region.
2. Slow loss of height.
3. Stooped or bending posture of the body.
4. Easy breakage or fracturing of bones.
A bone density test is performed to determine the condition of the bones. With the help of DXA (Dual Energy X-ray absorptiometry) or a bone mineral density scan, the doctors can tell if you need to think of osteoporosis prevention or not.
How to Prevent Osteoporosis:
Though this disease is not completely curable, here we will get to know about the best ways to avoid osteoporosis:
Exercising a bit daily is beneficial for everyone at any age. Similarly, it can be useful in the prevention of osteoporosis as well. A few exercises like climbing stairs, squats, push-ups, and weight training with resistance bands and dumbbells all contribute to increasing the strength of your bones.
If you don’t want to go to the gym or you are unable to perform any of these exercises, yoga is another better option. Yoga, Pilates, and dancing also help to improve bone strength and flexibility of the body.
These exercises help the body to form new bone tissues as they cause the muscles to pull and push against the bones. Exercising also helps to improve your posture, balance, and body coordination with the brain, which saves you from getting imbalanced and avoids falls that can cause your bone to break.
Change in Lifestyle:
Smoking and alcohol consumption are the two major lifestyle faults that cause severe health issues. Osteoporosis is one such issue. The best way to prevent the risk of osteoporosis is to completely abstain from any kind of alcohol or tobacco intake. If not possible, try at least to reduce the intake as much as you can.
Changing your food habit or else, adding nutritive elements to your meal will save you from a lot of diseases and osteoporosis is one such disease. Adding foods rich in calcium and vitamins, vitamin D, and vitamin K to be specific will strengthen your bones and muscles. We will get to know more about the osteoporosis prevention diet later in the article.
Consulting a Doctor or Healthcare Expert:
If you are in your late 50s or even older, and you are facing severe signs of osteoporosis, try consulting a doctor first. At this age, it is better to not take a risk and one should not follow exercising or a diet plan without an expert’s advice.
Last but not the least, medicines can help in the prevention of osteoporosis to some extent if not cure it completely. The doctors can prescribe some vitamin and calcium supplements which will make the bones stronger along with a nutrition-rich diet.
The commonly used drug to treat osteoporosis is known as bisphosphates. Alendronate (Fosamax), ibandronate (Boniva), and zoledronic acid (Reclast) are some of the medicines prescribed by doctors.
We can say that these are some of the major prevention of osteoporosis guidelines, and following them religiously will improve the health of your bones and will save you from severe osteoporosis for a long time. Also, following a single measure will not help as all these steps go hand in hand in osteoporosis prevention.
Osteoporosis Prevention Diet
Osteoporosis is mainly the decay and weakening of bones. So, having a diet rich in nutrients that helps us to make the bones strong again or slow down the decay will have a positive impact on the disease.
The increase in the intake of food rich in calcium and vitamin D will help the most in osteoporosis prevention. Also, having a diet rich in protein, vitamin K, magnesium and zinc will further add strength to the bones.
Below are some of the foods that you can include in your diet to make your bones healthy. Also, this is one of the best ways to prevent the risk of osteoporosis as it is completely natural and harmless.
1. Dairy products like milk, cheese, yogurt, cottage cheese, and other milk products.
2. Green leafy vegetables like okra, broccoli, kale, turnip greens, and others.
3. Fishes such as salmon, tuna, mackerel, and sardines.
4. Tofu, soya beans, and soya drinks.
5. Meat and eggs.
6. Nuts like Brazil nuts and almonds.
7. Cereals, fruit juices, and bread with extra calcium.
This article discusses the best ways to avoid osteoporosis and we hope this helps you to prevent this disease and save your bones.