We recently discussed the risk factors for osteoporosis and how it can be devastating when you have a fall with osteopenia or osteoporosis (read here for more information). But what can you do to help prevent Osteoporosis?
Here’s 7 great tips to improve your bone health:
- Maintain regular weight bearing exercise and progressive resistance training (impact aerobics, tennis, dancing, jogging, hill walking, resistance training, stair climbing)
- Avoid prolonged periods of sedentary behaviour (yes again… it’s time to get up and get moving!)
- Maintain a healthy body weight (thin build or excessive weight may impact on the health of your bones)
- Quit smoking and avoid excessive alcohol intake
- Include 3-5 serves of calcium rich food daily. More than half of Australian adults do not reach recommended levels of calcium. Good sources of calcium include cheese, green leafy vegetables, brazil nuts, flax seeds, yoghurt, milk and other dairy products, almonds & tofu.
- Ensure adequate sun exposure for bone health. One third of Australian adults have Vitamin D deficiency – read here for more information about Sun Exposure & Vitamin D levels.
- Include foods containing Vitamin D in your diet. Vitamin D sources include fatty fish – herring or mackerel, liver, eggs and some fortified products such as milk.
If you suspect you may be deficient in either calcium or Vitamin D then speak to your doctor. You may require supplementation. Keep your eye out for the next article about the types of exercise you should do and what to do if you have already been diagnosed with osteoporosis.
Article written by Dr Melanie Woollam (Osteopath)
Osteoporosis Australia. www.osteoporosis.org.au
Exercise for preventing and treating osteoporosis in postmenopausal women. T. E Howe., B. Shea., L. J Dawson et al. 2011. The Cochrane Library.
Whole body vibration for preventing and treating osteoporosis. C. Lorenzen., G.A. Naughton. M. Cameron., et al. 2010. The Cochrane Library.