What is Osteoporosis?
It's all about bone remodeling.
Throughout our lives, our bone tissue matures and becomes brittle. Mature bone tissue is removed from the skeleton, and strong new bone tissue is added to it, through a process called bone remodeling.
When the bone remodeling process becomes imbalanced, so that mature bone tissue is not sufficiently replaced with strong new bone tissue, osteoporosis can result.
Osteoporosis is a silent disease that can lead to bone fractures.
Am I at risk for osteoporosis?
A number of factors put you at risk for developing osteoporosis. Some can be controlled. Ask your doctor about your risk for osteoporosis, and about developing a plan to protect your bones.
Women: Your risk of hip fracture due to osteoporosis is equal to your risk for breast, ovarian, and uterine cancer, combined.
Men: If you're age 50 or older, your risk of a bone fracture due to osteoporosis is greater than your risk for prostate cancer.
Uncontrollable Risk Factors for Osteoporosis
- Age greater than 50
- Family history of osteoporosis
- Low body weight - small, thin body shape
- Broken bones or height loss
Controllable Risk Factors for Osteoporosis
- Not consuming enough calcium and vitamin D
- Not eating enough fruits and vegetables
- Consuming too much protein, sodium, and caffeine
- An inactive lifestyle
- Drinking too much alcohol
- Losing weight
There are also medications and diseases that can cause bone loss and increase your risk of osteoporosis.
Source: National Osteoporosis Foundation