Osteoporosis: What You Need To Know

Osteoporosis affects nearly two thirds of the women across the globe, beginning usually around menopause, and making them overly susceptible to bone fractures because of the bones becoming thin and fragile. With the onset of menopause, women experience a drop in the estrogen (a hormone produced by the ovaries) levels and this drop in hormones leads to increased risk of osteoporosis.

While normally osteoporosis patients are given calcium and vitamin D supplements, the new approach of estrogen replacement therapy shows better results in preventing bone loss.

Apart from a drop in the estrogen levels and menopause, there are other factors too which contribute to osteoporosis, such as not consuming adequate amounts of calcium throughout life, an inactive lifestyle, history of eating disorders, heredity, excessive smoking and excessive alcohol consumption. Also being on certain medications such as steroids, antidepressants and diuretics can also increase your odds of experiencing osteoporosis.

To prevent osteoporosis, there are just two key strategies which must be used together all through your life, and these are regular exercise and proper nutrition. It’s better if you adopt these strategies while you’re still young because the bone mass once lost cannot be replaced easily, so eat healthy so that your body doesn’t have to use calcium from your bones.

When you begin exercising early in life, it helps in increasing the bone mass before you reach menopause and at the same time keeping your exercises on after menopause will help in reducing the loss of bone mass. So while there is still time, get into one of the healthy habits of walking, aerobics, dancing or playing a sport. Most women who resort to crash diets, to get that sleek and slender figure, do not realize that they are in fact heading for trouble in their later stages of life.

To consume adequate amounts of calcium get your hands on to dairy products, seafood, nuts and green leafy vegetables. Upon reaching menopause you will need to take some calcium supplement which contains calcium carbonate and vitamin D. While calcium carbonate is the most readily absorbable form of calcium, vitamin D is needed to help with the absorption of calcium in the human body. As for what supplement to take and how much calcium you need to consume, let your doctor make a recommendation.

Sidharth Thakur