Bones are complex living tissue. They provide structure and support for your muscles; protect your organs and stores 99% of the calcium used by the soft tissues of your body for their various functions.
Bone is made mostly of collagen, a protein that provides a soft framework, and hydroxyapatite, a complex of calcium and phosphate, minerals that add strength and harden the framework. This combination of collagen and calcium makes bone strong yet flexible to withstand stress.
Although men can suffer from Osteoporosis the vast majority of individuals affected by Osteoporosis are woman. Women are four times more likely to develop osteoporosis than men.
Although the disease can strike at any age, women are at great risk for osteoporosis after Menopause.A major reason for this is that women’s bodies produce less estrogen after menopause, and estrogen plays an important role in helping to prevent bone loss.
After about age 30, your body breaks down old bone faster than it builds new bone. This process speeds up dramatically as menopause approaches and for several years after. In the first five to seven years following menopause, you can lose upto 20% of bone mass. Bone loss continues at a slower pace throughout the remainder of your life and may accelerate again in your older years, usually after age 70.
There is no single cause of osteoporosis but there are many risk factors. These include:
Older age, Female gender, Thin build, Physical inactivity, Smoking, Alcohol, Low levels of Vit. D, Post menopause etc
Signs and Symptoms
There are usually no symptoms of osteoporosis until a bone breaks. Fractures of the wrist, hip, spine, pelvis and upper arm are most common in Osteoporosis.
Treatment is mainly medications but certain lifestyle changes are also helpful as
Exercise: Regular weight bearing exercise should be maintained as it can help to reduce bone loss.
Diet: A diet high in calcium is necessary and helps to reduce the rate of bone loss. Vitamin D is essential as it helps in calcium absorption. Foods rich in Calcium are Dairy products, dark green vegetable, beans legumes, soybean, cereals and nuts
Exposure to sunlight: It is also go give some moderate sunlight to our body as it helps to produce Vitamin D in the body.