Who gets osteoporosis?Both men and women can develop osteoporosis. Declining oestrogen levels during menopause in women can cause a decline in bone mass, from between 5% and 40%.
What are the risk factors for osteoporosis?
- Family history of osteoporosis
- Delayed puberty
- Early menopause
- Low testosterone (for men)
- Continual use of corticosteroids including some asthma medications
- Lack of exercise
- Gastrointestinal conditions that impair nutrient absorption
- Thyroid conditions
- Kidney conditions, which effect excretion of nutrients
- Liver conditions
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Insufficient bone mass development by the age of thirty
- Some medications, such as statins and heartburn treatments
- Low body weight
- Mineralisation defects
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- Excessive coffee consumption
- Soft drinks
- Lack of sunshine
- Increasing age
- Acidic diet
- High-sodium foods
How much calcium do you need?
|RECOMMENDED DAILY INTAKE OF CALCIUM|
|Children 1 to 3 years||500mg/day|
|Children 4 to 8 years||700mg/day|
|Boys and girls 9 to 11 years||1,000mg/day|
|Boys and girls 12 to 18 years||1,300mg/day|
|Men 19 to 70 years||1,000mg/day|
|Men older than 70 years||1,300mg/day|
|Women19 to 50 years||1,000mg/day|
|Women 51 onwards||1,300mg/day|
How much calcium are you getting?Calcium intake should come from your diet where possible. Calcium supplementation can be used to bring the daily intake up to the recommended daily allowance. Knowing how much calcium you are getting from your diet is a useful way of knowing how much extra calcium you need. See our article Do you know how to get your daily recommended calcium?
What other factors influence bone density?Other nutrients are also important for bone formation and re-absorption.
- Vitamin D - (we are constantly being reminded about the growing deficiency of Vitamin D emerging from the need to cover up in our harsh Australian sun). Vitamin D is necessary for efficient calcium absorption.
- Vitamin K – essential for maintaining bone density
- Boron – aids in the synthesis of Vitamin D as well as oestrogen
- Phosphorus – required for the mineralisation of bones and teeth
- Magnesium – to assist with the absorption of calcium
- Manganese – required for the synthesis of bone growth and cartilage
- Zinc – required for bone formation
- Silicon - promotes the formation of bones and teeth
What happens if I get too much calcium?When the diet has a good supply of calcium and is topped up with excess from supplements, conditions such as constipation, bloating and kidney problems can occur. The effect of too much calcium can decrease absorption of iron, magnesium, and zinc.
What can you do to keep your bones healthy?Healthy bone management requires a balanced mix of diet and lifestyle. A regular exercise program, 20 minutes of sunlight, a healthy alkalising diet rich in calcium and calcium supplementation to reach the recommended daily allowance will help to delay the development of osteoporosis.
TIP: Caffeine, alcohol, soft drinks, smoking, high-sodium foods, statins, steroids and heartburn drugs can have a negative impact on bone health.Learn more about Janne here