Osteoporosis is Latin for “porous bone”. It is a condition with no outward symptoms, that causes the bones to become weak and fragile. Bone is a living growing tissue. When we are young we gain more bone than we lose until the maximum density at about age 30 is reached. After about age 35 a loss begins, Prevention and treatment can involve weight bearing exercises. Risk factors include being female, being older, family history, low body weight, alcohol intake and smoking. Certain race/ethnicities are generally believed to be at a higher risk. Other risk factors are hormonal stage of life, poor diet such as low calcium and vitamin D levels, and infrequent weight bearing activities. Recent research suggests that eating foods rich in calcium is a better method for increasing your intake that only supplements. Different calcium supplements are different forms, and some are best taken in conjunction with other vitamins and minerals. The majority of the population does not get the recommended amount of calcium. When this happens than your body will use the supply from your bones to support the other functions that it is needed for. Overall digestive health is important to the absorption of the mineral as well. Certain medications can be contributors to bone loss, certain illnesses that can impact digestion and absorption can contribute as well. For more information on risk factors and bone mineral density testing visit Osteoporosis Canada. On of the fracture prediction tools available that have been tested in the Canadian population :WHO Fracture Risk Calculation Tool (FRAX®) for Canada
It is possible to reduce your risk of developing osteoporosis through a healthy lifestyle. Exercises that focus on balance training are beneficial to reduce the risk of injury. If you have osteoporosis there are there are movements and exercises you should be aware of to minimize injury. Basic bone health for all individuals includes regular weight bearing and resistance type exercise as well as adequate vitamin and mineral intake.