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How do I Lower my Risk for Osteoporosis?

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  • Written By: Autumn Rivers
  • Edited By: Andrew Jones
  • Last Modified Date: 14 June 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2018
    Conjecture Corporation
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There are certain factors that increase the risk for osteoporosis, and fortunately, many can be controlled. Of course, if you are female, have experienced menopause, or have naturally small bones, your risk of developing this condition is automatically higher than most people, but you can still lower it by making some changes. One of the easiest ways to lower the risk for osteoporosis is to supplement the diet with nutrients like calcium and vitamin D, as both can help strengthen the bones. Increasing physical activity can also help since bone density can be improved through exercise. Some lifestyle changes can also reduce the risks, including staying at a healthy weight and quitting smoking and alcohol abuse.

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One of the most basic ways to reduce the risk for osteoporosis is to make sure that you are getting enough calcium. You need at least 1000 mg daily, or 1200 mg if you are over age 50, and can get this through either dairy products, leafy green vegetables, beans, or a vitamin supplement. Once you have made sure that you are getting enough calcium, you should also check on your vitamin D consumption, as this nutrient helps your body absorb and use calcium. You should get at least 800 mg. daily, and can get it either through a vitamin supplement or a few minutes of exposure to sunlight several days per week. Additionally, magnesium and vitamin K are also helpful for improving the health of the bones and lowering the risk for osteoporosis.

If you do not already have enough reason to exercise regularly, you should know that physical activity can also improve bone density. You can perform cardiovascular exercises like running and walking, as high impact exercises are usually the best for improving bone mass. On the other hand, you might want to forego such activities if you have bad joints, such as weak knees. Fortunately, weightlifting can also help increase the density of the bones, so consider adding this activity to your exercise routine.

You can also change certain habits to decrease your risk for osteoporosis. For example, those who are underweight tend to have more brittle bones that do not have enough density, so try to stay around a healthy weight. Also, smoking and drinking excessively are known for decreasing the body's ability to absorb calcium. Thus, just trading these two habits for a vitamin D supplement can greatly increase the absorption of calcium, reducing your overall risk for osteoporosis.

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