Osteoporosis: 7 Risk Factors You Should Know About


Osteoporosis is a condition in which bones weaken and become more prone to fracture, especially in the hips, spine, and wrists. While there are certain medical treatments that can prevent or slow down osteoporosis, there are also several risk factors you can control to help prevent osteoporosis later in life. Learn more about these 7 risk factors below!


Osteoporosis is a condition in which bones weaken and become more prone to fracture, especially in the hips, spine, and wrists. While there are certainly medical treatments that can prevent or slow down osteoporosis, there are also several risk factors you can control to help prevent osteoporosis later in life. Learn more about these 7 risk factors below!



1 - Not Getting Enough Calcium

Osteoporosis is a common bone disease in which the bones become weak and porous, leading to bone deformity and an increased risk of fracture. The best way to prevent osteoporosis is by eating foods rich in calcium, like dairy products and dark leafy greens. Calcium also can be found in supplements or medications if your diet does not contain enough calcium-rich foods. 


2. Smoking cigarettes or using tobacco products.

Research has shown that smoking is a leading cause of osteoporosis. In one study, women smokers were found to have significantly lower bone density than non-smokers. Smoking also causes chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) which prevents the lungs from absorbing the necessary amount of calcium and phosphorous, two essential nutrients needed for strong bones. Quitting smoking can help reverse these effects and reduce your risk of developing osteoporosis.


3. Too Much Soda

Did you know that drinking too much soda can lead to osteoporosis? Soda is full of sugar and phosphoric acid, which leach calcium from your bones. In addition, the citric acid in soda depletes the body's stores of vitamin C, which is necessary for healthy bones. The more soda you drink the worse it gets!


4.  Low Bone Mass When Young

The risk of osteoporosis is also increased when a person has low bone mass when young. Bone mass naturally increases during puberty, but if it doesn't, the risk of osteoporosis is higher. 

One study found that among adults aged 20 to 29 years old, 61% had low bone mineral density at the lumbar spine and 33% had low bone mineral density at the hip.


5. Not Getting Enough Vitamin D

The fifth risk factor is not getting enough vitamin D. Vitamin D is synthesized in the skin when it's exposed to sunlight. If you don't get enough sun exposure, then your body won't be able to produce enough vitamin D and you'll be at risk for developing osteoporosis.


6. Being Overweight

Weight is a major risk factor for osteoporosis. Losing weight, if you are overweight, can help lower the risk of developing osteoporosis later in life. Maintaining a healthy diet and getting regular exercise are also important factors in reducing your risk for osteoporosis.


7. Family History of Fractures

One of the risk factors for osteoporosis is family history. If you have a family history of fractures, then you are more likely to suffer from osteoporosis as well. Fractures can lead to bone loss and make it difficult for your bones to repair themselves.

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