Osteoporosis is caused by a loss of bone. This occurs silently and progressively with often no symptoms until a fracture occurs. This is caused when the bone loses calcium and other minerals making them more fragile and more likely to fracture. While there are a number of uncontrollable factors when it comes to risk of Osteoporosis like age, gender and genetics, there are plenty of behaviours which can help lower the risk of Osteoporosis. If you think you might be at risk of osteoporosis, speak to your doctor and get a Drs Referral for a DEXA bone mineral density scan.
How can you reduce your risk of osteoporosis?
- Consuming plenty of calcium foods it vital for bone health, not only when your growing but into adulthood as well. Examples such as, milk, cheese, yoghurt every day is important.
- Participating in regular physical activity, in particular weight bearing exercise with added resistance places extra stress on the bones therefore making them stronger and encourages bone growth
- Having regular and safe sun exposure for adequate vitamin D Vitamin d is equally important for bone health as this increases calcium absorption.
- Eat a balanced diet with a range of food from each of the five food groups (eat the rainbow of vegies).
- Quit smoking! This not only is bad for your lungs but it can also affect your bone health too! Smokers tend to have lower bone mineral density than non-smokers
- Try and eat less salt. When your kidneys remove sodium from your body, they take some of your calcium too, so do your best to eat less salt. Avoid packaged foods which contain a high amount of salt, check the label for “no-added-salt” first.
Are you at risk?
- Do you have a family history of osteoporosis?
- Do you suffer from Coeliac or Crohn’s disease?
- Have you gone through early menopause?
- Are you over 70? Have you ever suffered from a fracture during minimal impact?
- Are you physically inactive?
- Do you have low levels of calcium and vitamin D?
If you answered yes to any of the above speak to your doctor about getting a DEXA bone mineral density scan. Dr Referral necessary prior to scan.