Osteoporosis is a disease which can cause your bones to grow weak and fragile. More women than men are affected by osteoporosis.
You can reduce your risk of osteoporosis through diet and exercise.
Women continue to build bone mass until their 30s. After that it is important to continue to maintain your bone mass.
This means consuming enough calcium. Unfortunately, most of us do not get enough calcium as a part of our regular diets.
To increase the amount of calcium you are getting, include reduced or low fat dairy products in your diet on a daily basis. You should have three servings of dairy products each day.
Add green vegetables, especially leafy green vegetables, to your diet as well. Fish with edible bones, like canned salmon, are a good source of calcium.
Vitamins D and K work with calcium to help keep your bones strong. To make sure you get enough of these vitamins, take a multi-vitamin and mineral supplement every day.
Keep your intake of protein moderate. Eating excessive amounts of protein can leach calcium from your bones. Drinking carbonated beverages can also cause you to lose bone mass. Try substituting low fat or skim milk for soda at meals.
If you are a smoker, you are twice as likely to suffer from osteoporosis as a nonsmoker. Drinking alcohol can also make it more likely that you will fall in addition to losing bone mass.
Some medications can increase bone loss. For example, taking corticosteroids can make it difficult for your body to absorb Vitamin D, which your body needs to keep your bones strong.
A common corticosteroid is Predinsone. If you are taking Prednisone, ask your doctor if you need prescription Vitamin D to offset any potential problems.
Walking and weight training are good exercises to help prevent bone loss. These types of exercises are called weight bearing exercise. To lessen the chances that you will fall, you also need exercises that challenge your balance. If you are stable enough, walk on a treadmill without holding on to the handrails, or try sitting on an exercise ball.
Hormone replacement therapy after menopause may help prevent bone loss. Talk with your doctor to see if you are an appropriate candidate.
You should be having regular bone density tests beginning around menopause. If you are experiencing significant bone loss, your doctor may prescribe medication that can help.