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Beyond Milk: Best Five Ways to Prevent Osteoporosis

Osteoporosis is a painless but debilitating disease in which the bones literally become porous. This causes the affected person to lose bone mass and strength, losses which can result in sudden fractures without warning. Women over 50 are at the highest risk, as are Caucasian and Asian women or people with smaller frames.

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Although genetics plays a part in the development of osteoporosis, there are other factors to consider. This is good news since it gives people some measure of control by allowing them to reduce their risk. Here are some ways to prevent osteoporosis:

Avoid Toxins

Smoking and excess alcohol consumption interfere with calcium absorption and contributes to bone loss. Caffeine from coffee has also been implicated in bone loss. Some prescription drugs can decrease the density of bones. Fluoride and contraceptives are two major players in this loss for which you can usually find alternative products.

Get the Facts

A good place to start in prevention is to evaluate personal risk. The most common test for bone density is the DXA test. A family doctor, for instance, can order this test that measures the strength of the bones and uses less radiation than a chest x-ray.

Consider Diet

The nutrition consumed largely affects general health, including bone health. Soy is traditionally touted as preventing bone loss. However, due to its many other ill effects, you should still probably avoid it.

While many consider dairy to be the primary source of calcium, healthier calcium-rich foods are leafy greens, oats, almonds, sardines, and broccoli. Nut milks are usually higher in calcium than cow’s milk.

Supplement Correctly

While healthy foods are the best source of nutrients, supplements are also helpful. It is important to remember to take calcium with Vitamin D, magnesium and Vitamin K so it is properly absorbed. Always check with a health professional before undertaking a new supplement regimen.

Maintain an Active Lifestyle

Exercise, particularly strength training, is effective in strengthening bones. Because of time and budget constraints, many people cannot get to a gym regularly. The best way to include exercise in the lifestyle is to fit it in throughout the natural course of the day. Shorter, higher intensity exercise sessions give the best results.

Implementing these prevention strategies is the best way to overcome hereditary risk factors. No one can change the size of her frame. However, bone strength is maintained or regained by living a lifestyle of health.

About the author: A recent college graduate from University of San Francisco, Anica is a full-time freelance writer. She has already published articles for a variety of industries, ranging from technology to beauty to health. She loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. For more osteoporosis information and checkups, she trusts this Family Doctor in Winter Haven.

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