Osteoporosis is a disease of the bones, the disease affects mostly older women but older men can get also. People with osteoporosis have bones that become weak and can break easily – it causes about 1.5 million fractures (broken bones) annually. The bones most frequently broken due to osteoporosis are the hip, back, and wrist.
Can I prevent Osteoporosis? Basic genes determine the height and strength of your skeleton and frame, but lifestyle determines the amount of “bone” you preserve during your youth, which determines how much is saved for later in life. Healthy bones need a well-balanced supplement including vitamins and minerals from different groups. You especially need a diet rich in calcium.
Bones need regular weight-bearing exercise to be strengthened. Good bone building exercises include running, aerobics, tennis and walking. Smoking and drinking have a toxic effect on bone structure and development in both men and women.
Who gets Osteoporosis? 10.0 million Americans have osteoporosis and 8.0 million are women. Approximately 34 million Americans have a condition called Osteopenia, which is pre-cursor to the disease. Women who are at greatest risk for osteoporosis are those who:
Have a family history of the disease Have not had sufficient calcium in their diet Had an early menopause Had surgery to remove their ovaries Had extended bed rest Used certain medications for long periods of time (steroids) Have small body frames How do I know if I have Osteoporosis? Early signs of osteoporosis are losing height or having bone(s) that break easily. Bone density is the term referring to the solidness of bones. A Dexa-Scan (Dual-Energy X-ray Absorptiometry) is required by your doctor to actually measure bone density.
What Else? Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) lowers the risk of hip, other fractures, and certain cancers but increase the risk of breast cancer, heart disease, stroke, and blood clots. One product gaining prominence today is all-natural hormone balancing cream derived from botanical sources that provide the benefits of HRT without the side effects.