September 25 2021
The bones in our body have small spaces within them, as a part of their structure. However, sometimes, these spaces become enlarged; such a condition is known as osteoporosis. Although bones constantly break down and replace themselves, during osteoporosis, the creation of new bones stops. It makes the bones less dense as well as thinner, and hence, weaker. People who are affected by this condition are more prone to fractures and bone injuries even while doing normal daily activities.
It can affect anyone, but Asian and white women, who are near to their menopause, are at the highest risk.
What are the symptoms of osteoporosis?
The early stages of osteoporosis show no symptoms as such, so it is hard to detect this condition at the individual level. The symptoms that may occur in the early stages include weak or brittle nails, receding gums, and weak grip strength. Once this health condition affects your bones, you might experience:
- A kneeled posture
- Back pain
- Loss of height over a long time
- Brittle bones (that may break easily)
If left untreated, osteoporosis can worsen, causing serious problems or injuries like fractures. The back or neck pain is usually due to a compression fracture in the spine. Fractures caused due to osteoporosis take time in healing, and this depends on the age, severity, and location of the fracture. If you have a family history of osteoporosis, it is advised to see a doctor if experiencing any symptoms.
What causes osteoporosis?
The possible causes of osteoporosis are health conditions like hyperthyroidism or having certain medications like corticosteroids. The risk factors of osteoporosis include:
- Menopause: a primary risk factor, menopause is closely linked to osteoporosis. Women who are 45 to 55 years old, and are near to their menopause, are at a higher risk for this condition; which is mainly because of the hormonal changes associated with it.
- Age: all your life, bones break down and transform themselves into new ones. However, with age, this process slows down, which makes it the biggest risk factor. Men and women both experience such changes by the 40s but men lose bone at a slower rate, however, by the time they’re 70-80 years old, this rate becomes equivalent.
- Other factors: there are some other risk factors of osteoporosis, such as:
- Gender, women are at a higher risk
- A family history of osteoporosis
- Poor diet and nutrition
- Very low body weight
- Having a small-boned frame
How to prevent osteoporosis?
Many factors may induce osteoporosis and are usually not under our control. For example, females are at a higher risk, being aged is also a risk factor, or having a family history of the same. Here are some ways through which this health condition can be prevented:
- Calcium and vitamin D: calcium is essential for getting strong bones, both in children and adults. Deficiency of the same may cause osteoporosis, which will make the bones brittle and more prone to fractures. Taking calcium supplementation may reduce bone loss in postmenopausal conditions. Foods that are a good source of calcium include dairy products, bread, fish, etc. you can also include alvizia’s salmon fish oil in your diet, as, it promotes healthy bones and may improve osteoporosis. Vitamin D, on the other hand, helps in absorbing calcium from the food taken in. many studies have shown that vitamin D and Calcium together can prevent osteoporosis.
- Exercises: exercising can positively impact your bones, making them healthy and dense. Foot stomps, bicycle curls, aerobics, shoulder lifts, squats, skipping or jumping rope, dancing, stair climbing are some of the exercises that may enhance bone density and keep them healthy. Exercising, along with some lifestyle changes may prevent further bone loss.
- Quit smoking: research shows that smoking may cause an imbalance in the turnover of bones which makes them less dense by reducing the bone mass and hence can lead to osteoporosis over time. Smoking tobacco also reduces the body’s ability to absorb calcium which causes brittle and weak bones. Nicotine, the main component found in tobacco, slows down the production of cells that are responsible for the building of bones. So, it is highly recommended to quit smoking if you’re in the early stages of osteoporosis.
- Hormone therapy: if estrogen is used during and after menopause, it may help in treating osteoporosis in women. However, this therapy has also been linked to a greater risk of blood clot formation, heart diseases, and different types of cancer. So, the pros and cons of hormonal therapy must be measured before taking it. Similarly, testosterone therapy in males may help in enhancing bone structure and density.
- Make healthy choices: it is very important to maintain a healthy diet to prevent or treat osteoporosis, in a natural way. Healthy choices include fruits and leafy vegetables, protein-rich foods, legumes, and cereals. Here are some of the foods you can include in the diet to prevent brittle and weak bones.
- Legumes: legumes are a great source of calcium, magnesium, fiber, and many other nutrients. However, it is highly advised to soak them in water for at least 3 to 4 hours and then consume them, as soaking decreases the levels of chemicals called phytates in legumes, which might reduce the body's ability to absorb calcium.
- Protein-rich foods: meat, fish, and dairy products, are a good source of calcium, apart from proteins. However, taking extremely high levels of protein may also be bad for the bones. So, it is good to measure the required levels and consume dairy products instead of high proteins.
- Salmon: canned sardines with salmon, is a good source of calcium and hence, helps in the overall development of bone structure by enhancing its density. People with a higher intake of omega-3 fatty acids usually have a better bone mineral density.
Alvizia’s salmon fish oil is a dietary supplement that comes with the goodness of 60 soft gel capsules. It contains omega-3 fatty acids, and calcium, which helps in treating and preventing osteoporosis.