Lifestyle Factors that Increase Your Risk of Osteoporosis

June 4, 2021

 

Categories : Senior Living Tips

 

As you age, the bone deteriorates in composition. Osteoporosis is a disease that weakens the bones and increases the risk of fractures. Your risk of developing osteoporosis depends on bone density, diet, physical activity and overall health. 

Here are some lifestyle habits that increase the risk of developing osteoporosis: 

  • Living a sedentary lifestyle: Bone is a living tissue which needs to maintain its strength. Getting little to no exercise can increase the risk of osteoporosis. For your bones to stay strong, you must engage in exercises such as walking, dancing, low-impact aerobics, and swimming. These exercises work on the bones and help on slowing mineral loss. Weight-bearing exercises promote balance and good posture that are beneficial for your bones. 
  • Too much intake of salt: High salt intake has been associated with osteoporosis. Too much salt intake leads to an increased calcium excretion in urine. This negative calcium balance leads to bone loss. Many people think they don’t need to cut down their sodium intake as they don’t add extra salt to their food. However, many don’t realise that over 70% of the sodium comes from packaged and restaurant foods. To cut sodium intake, eat fresh food that doesn’t contain added salt. Read labels and choose the product with the lowest amount of sodium. 
  • Shunning sunlight: When exposed to sunlight, the body produces vitamin D which helps to absorb the calcium needed for bone health. Just 10 to 15 minutes of sunlight gives you enough vitamin D. 
  • Drinking too much: Heavy drinking is not good for your health, including bone health. Heavy alcohol use, especially at a young age, can significantly affect bone health and increase the risk of osteoporosis later in life. Drinking alcohol leads to an increase in hormones that damage bones. Heavy drinkers are more likely to suffer frequent fractures due to brittle bones than those who do not drink. 
  • Smoking: Cigarette smoking is not just bad for your heart disease and lungs but also for your bones. The best thing that you should do to protect your bones is to quit smoking. Smoking reduces blood supply to the bones, slows the production of bone-forming cells and impede the absorption of salt.