Osteoporosis is also known as a bone disorder that weakens your bone density and strength, resulting in brittle bones that are prone to a higher risk of fractures. Without bone strength, bones can break easily, even from just a slight fall or even a sneeze. Seniors above the age of 50, particularly women, are at higher risk of suffering from osteoporosis. The common fractures are sites are in the spine, hip, pelvis, and wrist.
A person may not be aware that they have osteoporosis until they experience a fracture or break after a minor incident, such as a fall. This is because osteoporosis develops slowly. In this article, let us learn more about the main cause of osteoporosis and how to minimize the risk.
1. Endocrine disorders
Did you know that there are different types of osteoporosis? Osteoporosis is classified into primary, secondary, and rare. Primary osteoporosis is caused by the natural degeneration of the human body and secondary osteoporosis is caused by drugs, endocrine diseases, or surgery. Among people who have osteoporosis, most suffer from primary osteoporosis, but the influence of secondary osteoporosis should not be neglected.
There are many reasons for osteoporosis due to endocrine problems. Here are a few:
Both men and women have a chance of osteoporosis due to hypogonadism. Due to the natural ageing process, the concentration of hormones in middle-aged and seniors is reduced and this correlates with the loss of bone mineral density (BMD). This is because the parathyroid hormone in the body stimulates bone formation.
The parathyroid located behind the thyroid gland is responsible for regulating the blood calcium and phosphorus balance in the body. When blood calcium is not enough, it will prompt osteoclasts to destroy the bone in the bones and release calcium to maintain blood calcium balance. When the parathyroid gland is dysfunctional, excessive secretion will cause severe bone loss.
2. Gastrointestinal malabsorption
It has been said, "You are what you eat". However, we may be eating extremely healthy foods, but due to poor digestion and absorption in the gastrointestinal tract, our bodies may not be able to benefit from the nutrients. Nutrient deficiency combined with calcium deficiency, will speed up and increase the risk of osteoporosis.
3. Poor living habits
The median age of those suffering from osteoporosis is getting younger. Studies have shown that people who like to drink carbonated beverages are 5 times more likely to have a bone fracture than ordinary people. Alcohol, smoking, excessive caffeine and carbonated beverages are all risk factors for osteoporosis. Carbonated beverages and caffeinated drinks like tea and coffee will affect calcium absorption. If you don't usually include sufficient calcium in your diet and love to drink these beverages, it can cause bone loss in the long run.
4. Lack of exercise
Regular exercise can improve muscle strength, maintain physical vitality, and speed up recovery time following an injury. Exercising also activates osteoblasts in the bones, to generate new cells for bone mineralization.
Minimise the risk of osteoporosis by doing the following:
- Avoid smoking, smoking can reduce the growth of new bone and lower estrogen levels in women
- Reduce alcohol intake to support healthy bones and lower the likelihood of falls
- Do regular weight bearing exercises to promote healthy bones and strengthens support from muscles
- Do exercises that promote flexibility and balance, such as yoga, which can reduce the risk of falls and fractures
- Take health supplements which can increase bone density and maintain bone health
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