Bones plays many roles in the body-providing structure, protecting organs, anchoring muscles, and storing calcium.
Why is bone health important?
Your bones are constantly changing and new bones are made and died old bone is broken down. When you're young, your body makes new bone faster than it breaks down old bone, and your bone mass increases. After that, bone remodeling continues, but you lose weight slightly more than you gain.
How likely you are to develop osteoporosis-a condition that causes bones to become weak and brittle -Depends on how much bone you attain by the time you reach age 30 and how soon you lose it after that.
What is the impact on bone health?
A number of factors can affect bone health. For example:
- The amount of calcium in your diet. The diet in calcium to diminished bone density, early bone loss, and increased risk of fracture.
- Physical activity. People who
- Tobacco and alcohol use. Research suggests that tobacco use contributes to weak bones. Similarly, having more than two alcoholic drinks a day increases the risk of osteoporosis, possibly because of alcohol can interfere with the body's ability to absorb calcium.
- Gender. You're at greater risk of osteoporosis if you're
- Size. You're at risk if you're extremely thin (with a body mass index of 19 or less) or have a small body frame
- Age. Your bones become thinner and weaker as you age.
- Race and family history. You're at greatest risk of osteoporosis if you're white or of asian descent. In addition, having a parent or sibling who has osteoporosis puts you at greater risk-especially if you have a family history of fractures.
- Hormone levels. Too much thyroid hormone can cause bone loss. In women, bone loss increases dramatically at menopause due to dropping estrogen levels. Prolonged absence of menstruation (amenorrhea) before menopause thus increases the risk of osteoporosis.
- Eating disorders and other conditions. People who have anorexia or bulimia are at risk of bone loss. In addition, stomach surgery (gastrectomy), weight-loss surgery, and conditions such as Crohn's disease, celiac disease, and Cushing's disease can affect your body's ability to absorb calcium.
- Certain Long-term use of corticosteroid medications, such as prednisone, cortisone, prednisolone, and dexamethasone, are damaging to bone. Other drugs that may increase the risk of osteoporosis include aromatase inhibitors to treat breast cancer, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, methotrexate, some anti-seizure medications, such as phenytoin (Dilantin) and phenobarbital, and proton pump inhibitors.
What can I do you keep my bones healthy?
You can take a few simple steps to prevent or slow bone loss. For example:
Include plenty of calcium in your diet. For adults 19 to 50 and men 51 to 70, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) is 1,000 milligrams (mg) of calcium a day. 70.
Good sources of calcium include dairy products, almonds, broccoli, kale, canned salmon with bones, sardines, and soy products, such as tofu.
Pay attention to vitamin D. Your body needs vitamin D to absorb calcium. For adults 19 to 70, the RDA of vitamin D is 600 international units (IUs) a day.
Good sources of vitamin D include oily fish, such as tuna and sardines, egg yolks, and fortified milk. Sunlight also contributes to the body's production of vitamin D. Weight-bearing exercises, such as walking
Do not smoke. Avoid drinking more than two alcoholic drinks a day.
Enlist your doctor's help.
If you are concerned about your bone health or your risk factors for osteoporosis, including a recent bone fracture, consult your doctor. He or she might recommend a bone density test. The results will help your doctor gauge your bone density and determine your rate of bone loss. Updated: 2016-01-15
Publication Date: 2010-12-07