Osteoporosis is known as the "Silent Disease" as there are no symptoms. This disease makes your bones thin, brittle, and fragile. While loss of bone mass (density) is a natural part of aging, it's most common in women who have gone through menopause and also occurs in men. As osteoporosis progresses, it leads to broken bones in the hip, spine, and wrist, even vigorous coughing or sneezing can result in fractures. Treatment can slow bone loss and increase bone thickness.
Osteoporosis or Osteopenia occurs when bone dissolves and is absorbed faster than new bone can be replaced, and bones become thinner. Osteoporosisis more likely to occur, if a person did not reach his or her ideal bone density during their developmental years (childhood and teenage). Among women, bone density decreases just before and during menopause, when the production of estrogen diminishes. Estrogen is the hormone that protects against bone loss.
Osteoporosis is more common among Asian women above 50 years old. Though younger women, in their 30s and 40s, have a lower risk of osteoporosis than older women, the risk increases when:
- Early Menopause. Usually, women go through menopause in their 50s, but some women may go through Menopause much earlier.
- Calcium & Vitamin D Deficiency
- Not enough Exercise, especially running or weight bearing exercises
- Take corticosteroids or other medicines that may lead to bone density loss
- Heavy Smoking
- Drinking more than 1 alcoholic drink a day
This Silent Disease is also underdiagnosed in men as they don't experience the dramatic loss of bone density that occurs during and after menopause. Also, having larger bones than women, men have larger reserves of bone mass to depend on as they grow older. This means that their bone loss progresses more slowly. By the time they reach their late 60s, men and women lose bone mass at the same rate.
Men may be more often severely disabled as they are generally older than women are when they have a fracture. The hips, spine, and wrists are the most common sites of fracture among both men and women.
- Medicines such as corticosteroids, anticonvulsants, heparin, excessive thyroid replacement, and certain cancer therapies may cause bone density loss.
- Chronic disease affecting the kidneys, lungs, stomach, joints, and intestines, changing hormone levels
- When lower levels of testosterone are undiagnosed in men
- Small body frame
- High alcohol intake
- Low calcium and vitamin D intake
- Insufficient physical activity
- Growing older
- Family history
- Weight-bearing exercise that promote bone strength
- Walking or jogging
- Riding stationary bicycles
- Using rowing machines
- Lifting weights.
- A diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, such as the TRUUTH Calcium supplement or Healthviva Calcium (with Vitamin D3 & Magnesium). Some studies suggest that Vitamin D and Calcium supplements, alone, are not able to prevent most cases of osteoporosis.
- Antiresorptive drugs such as Bisphosphonates (Alendronate, Risedronate, etc)
- Hormone replacement therapy (HRT)