Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Make Fighting Osteoporosis Easier

This article contains some basic facts about osteoporosis as well as some tips to make fighting easier.

I have been hearing about osteoporosis for several years now. It sounded unpleasant, but I never really thought of osteoporosis as an especially awful disease - until I started researching the details of it.
Osteoporosis can be an absolutely debilitating disease - with brittle, easily broken bones, and painful, hunched spines as a result.

Anyone can get osteoporosis, but women are five times more likely than men to get it. It tends to run in families, and it can also be made worse by some medicines.

I was surprised to learn there is no way to stop or cure osteoporosis, because I have seen commercials on television for medicines for it. I was, however, glad to learn there are ways to slow its progression.

Not getting enough calcium, vitamin D, and exercise can increase the problems caused by osteoporosis, while weight-bearing exercise, calcium-rich foods, and green-leafy vegetables can help keep bones strong.

There are prescription medicines available that help to build stronger bones, as well as over-the-counter calcium and vitamin D supplements.

It is best to take some precautionary measures before osteoporosis problems develop. Have "the discussion" with your doctor. X-rays or sound wave tests can be used to measure bone density - so you do not even have to undergo painful tests. Then you will know early-on if you need medication or just dietary supplements. Stay active - or get active if you aren't already, and eat a calcium and vitamin D rich diet.

Now that you have a brief list of the basic facts about osteoporosis and how to fight it - think about making the fight against osteoporosis a little more enjoyable. You don't have to just drink milk or eat cottage cheese to get your daily calcium needs met. Ice cream and frozen yogurt have calcium too. Orange juice can be bought with added calcium. Some flavored fitness waters come with calcium. Check the labels on some of your favorite foods. It can be a lot of fun to experiment with recipes and look for ways to add calcium to your meals. (How about a serving of nice, extra cheesy lasagna?) Even supplements come in tasty, chewy chocolates now.

Low-impact exercise, like walking or biking, can be all it takes to reduce your osteoporosis risk. Lifting weights is an excellent choice too - and you don't have to go excessively heavy with them either. You can get a light weight - whatever size is comfortable for you to get started. (You could even use a soup can if it fits your hand comfortably.) Try to have fun with the exercise - just like when you add calcium and vitamin D to your meals by adding foods. Walk with a friend, or your favorite music. Go outside, use a treadmill, or dance around the house to your favorite music. If you enjoy it, you're more likely to keep doing it, and if you keep doing it you're more likely to fight off osteoporosis.

You owe it to yourself to be aware of your personal osteoporosis risk and to ward it off. Preventing it is a small thing you can do for yourself now that pays off big as your bones age.


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