How Lifestyle Choices Might be Putting You at Risk for Osteoporosis
Many people are only vaguely familiar with osteoporosis, a disease which results in reduced bone density and quality. It’s often viewed as a normal part of the aging process. While age is a risk factor, many other risks are controllable.
Prevention is important because osteoporosis can have dangerous consequences for seniors. From bone pain to falls and fractures, it can cause permanent disability.
Taking steps to change your lifestyle may help you avoid or delay developing osteoporosis. Here are some to consider.
Lifestyle Choices to Prevent Osteoporosis
- Pump up your protein: Some research shows that high protein intake has a positive impact on bone health and density. By contrast, people who are admitted to hospitals with bone fractures often have low protein intake. Make sure you meet the protein goals your physician recommends.
- Check your calcium and vitamin D: Calcium and vitamin D work together to keep bones and teeth healthy and strong. Seniors may fall short when it comes to getting enough of either. As we age, the body doesn’t process vitamins and nutrients as it used to. If you aren’t sure how much you need of either, these guidelines can help.
- Stay physically active: Exercise helps bone regrowth and bone density. Both are vital in warding off osteoporosis. Exercising at least 30 minutes a day will help keep bones strong. Resistance training, weight-bearing forms of exercise, walking, and swimming are a few forms of healthy exercise.
- Watch your weight: Osteoporosis is linked to having a body mass index that is too high or too low. While it was previously thought that extra weight protected a person from osteoporosis, that line of thought has changed. Maintaining a healthy weight is one more step you can take to protect bone health.
- Alcohol in moderation: Alcohol abuse is linked to bone loss. That’s part of the reason that physicians generally advise patients to limit alcohol consumption. If you haven’t discussed the matter with your physician, it’s a good conversation to have.
- Stop smoking: Smoking has many proven health consequences, and loss of bone density is one of them. Researchers say smoking may interfere with calcium absorption.
From well-balanced meals to wellness programs and activities, residents at Sunrise Senior Living communities have easy access to the support they need to live a healthy lifestyle. We invite you to call the community nearest you to learn more and schedule a private tour!
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