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How to avoid osteoporosis?

22 November 2018

Throughout life, usually up to the age of 20, calcium builds up in the bones, making them dense. Afterward, the mineral density begins to decrease and in some cases the bones become weak, brittle, porous, and can break easily, which is known as osteoporosis.

As with other diseases, a healthy lifestyle from childhood is very important to prevent it. Vitamin D plays a very important role in the accumulation of calcium in the bones and the main way we obtain it is through sunlight. Regular exercise and a diet rich in calcium are also important habits to prevent this and other diseases.

According to the Secretariat of Health, there are two types of risk factors for this condition:

a) Modifiable: alcohol consumption, smoking, low body mass index, poor nutrition, low vitamin D intake, eating disorders (anorexia and bulimia), insufficient exercise, and low calcium intake, among others.

b) Non-modifiable: age, being female, history of fractures, menopause, having had surgery to remove the uterus, and rheumatoid arthritis.

Did you know that women are more likely to suffer from this disease due to hormonal issues, surgeries on the uterus and ovaries and because they are more prone to dietary changes, mainly to lose weight?

For adequate bone health, it is recommended:

  • Exercising regularly.
  • Eat a diet rich in bone-healthy nutrients.
  • Limit negative habits, such as smoking or excessive drinking.
  • Identify risk factors and if there are any, go to a doctor to perform the risk test.

How is it diagnosed?

First, the disease risk test is performed and then bone densitometry is performed.

Other important data

  • The amount of calcium that should be consumed in women between the ages of 19 and 50 is 1 gram per day. In men, consumption is similar, up to 1.3 grams.
  • There must be sun exposure for 15 minutes between 10 and 11 in the morning.
  • It is recommended that people between 40 and 50 years old perform physical activity three times a week between 45 and 50 minutes. In older adults, weight exercises four or five times a week adapted to the patient’s age.

With information from the Secretariat of Health

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