- Diseases, Disorders & Conditions
Osteoporosis - A Silent Thief
Osteoporosis: A Silent Thief provides an interesting approach in explaining this disease and what can be done as prevention and takes a broad look at what can be done in the way of treatments. If you like what you learned about The “Skinny” on Calcium and Weight Loss ; then this hub can be viewed as part two of the series.
Most people share the idea that once a bone is built, it is inert like a rock. Actually, the bones are gaining and losing minerals continuously in an ongoing process of remodeling. Growing children gain more bone than they lose, and healthy adults maintain a reasonable balance. When withdrawals substantially exceed deposits, problems such as osteoporosis develop.
Osteoporosis is a condition in which the bones become porous (void spaces within the structure of the bone) and fragile due to a loss of minerals; this condition is also known as adult bone loss. People with osteoporosis most often break bones in the hip, spine, and wrist. One out of every two women and one in four men over age 50 will break a bone in their lifetime due to osteoporosis.
A low calcium intake during the growing years limits the bones’ ability to achieve an optimal mass and density. Dense bones best protect against age-related bone loss and fractures. Most individuals achieve their peak bone mass by their late 20’s, from there bone loss is a degenerative downward spin. All adults lose bone while growing older, beginning as early as before age 40. When bone loss reaches the point of fragility, causing fractures under common, everyday stresses, osteoporosis has already stolen the golden opportunity for reversal.
Unlike many diseases that pronounce themselves in the body through symptoms such as pain, shortness of breath, fatigue and other signs of distress, osteoporosis is silent. The body sends no signals for help as bone looses precious calcium, structure and integrity. Unfortunately, blood samples offer no clues because blood calcium remains normal regardless of bone content, and measures of bone density are not routinely taken at your typical annual exam visit with your doctor.
Reverse Osteoporosis - 911 HELP!! I’m being robbed!!!
This year, Healthy People 2010 set as one of its goals to; “Reduce the proportion of adults with osteoporosis.” Osteoporosis afflicts more than 25 million people in the United States, mostly older women. Why mostly older women? In a woman’s earlier years, irregular menstrual cycles may signal a hormonal shortage, but most women don’t consider this an issue serious enough to warrant medical attention, they often enjoy the pleasure of “skipping cycles”, unaware of the “silent thief” at work.
Unknowingly, delay in treatment could lead to further bone loss and eventually osteoporosis. In the later years of woman’s life cycle, another condition to consider is amenorrhea, the absence of a menstrual period for three months or more, which may mean a deficiency of estrogen and other reproductive hormones. These hormones help maintain bone density, as mentioned earlier, dense bones mean strong bones. Finally, once a woman enters the menopausal (cease of menstruation) stage of life, the potential for bone loss is inevitable.
Osteoporosis is not a calcium deficiency disease such as scurvy. In scurvy, adequate vitamin C reliably reverses the condition; in osteoporosis, high calcium intakes alone during adulthood may prevent further deterioration, but does little or nothing to reverse bone loss once the degenerative process of osteoporosis has taken over. Because you can’t see and or necessarily “feel” osteoporosis, the best strategy that one can take to protect from the destructive afflictions of this “silent thief”, is to eat a diet rich in calcium!
Osteoporosis screening should be performed during normal annual medical exam for women over age 65. Women age 60 to 64 with higher-than-average risk factors for bone thinning, such as thin women or women not taking estrogen should also be screened earlier. The dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) is a painless scan that your doctor can order.
Osteoporosis Treatment Guidelines - No Time to Wait for a response from 911?
If you are a woman age 60 or older, there’s no time to wait for a response from your cry for help. If you’re worried about preventing bone loss from osteoporosis, simply concentrating just on dairy products is not the best way to build strong bones. Strangely enough, statistics show, for example, that the countries that consume the most dairy products have the highest rates of osteoporosis. How can this be?
“I’m Glad you Asked”
Calcium is not the only nutrient needed for strong bones. Magnesium and phosphorus are also important. Heavy milk drinkers tend to eat more animal protein, and refined flour and sugar products, all which make the bloodstream slightly acidic temporarily, causing the bones to release calcium to restore the normal blood calcium balance. Be sure to read my hub titled, The “Skinny” on Calcium and Weight Loss.
Magnesium and phosphorus are found mostly in vegetable sources of calcium, such as green leafy plants. Vegetable sources rich in calcium encourage calcium to be stored in the bones.
Osteoporosis - A Silent Thief
More Osteoporosis from fellow Hubbers
- Effective Holistic Treatment of Osteoporosis - by Dr. Cherie
Twenty million Americans have osteoporosis; Eighty percent are women. It is known as the silent disease,...
- How I Increased My Calcium Intake - by mulberry1
My father had osteoporosis for several years before his death in 2001. My 83 year old mother has it also...
- Prevent Osteoporosis with Weight Training Exercises - by Whitney05
Osteoporosis is a silent disease that mostly affects women who are post-menopausal because their estrogen levels decrease...
Alternative Osteoporosis Treatment - So what’s the Bottom Line??
In support of The “Skinny” on Calcium and Weight Loss, a diet high in animal proteins along with refined flour and sugar will not only wreck your chances for weight loss, but actually will encourage the bone loss process. Just as consuming large amounts of dairy, but overlooking the importance of green leafy vegetables is a harmful mistake. So what’s best? Get your calcium, magnesium and phosphorus from good plant sources… just like the cows that produce the milk do!!
For maximum calcium retention, try to eat at least
two servings of vegetables (either raw or cooked) with every meal!! High
calcium vegetable sources include kale, collards, mustard greens, arugula, bok
choy, parsley, watercress, broccoli, cabbage, carrots and corn or butternut
squash. Most of these veggies in addition to many more have been discussed in my hub titled, Anti-Angiogenic
Foods: Eat to Help Fight Cancer.
Again there will be a second hub for, Osteoporosis - A Silent Thief. This is an introduction to the musculoskeletal disease of osteoporosis and what you may not have known about the disease. For more information on how to “Arm yourself against the silent killer, osteoporosis”, stay tuned for my sister's conclusion on this subject in her next article titled “Bone Robbers”. Once again, I hope you learned something; knowledge is the greatest source of Power!
Disclaimer: This information is solely for informational purposes. IT IS NOT INTENDED TO PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. Before engaging in any complementary medical technique, including the use of natural or herbal remedies, you should do your own research, and then consult your physician before making any changes that might go against present doctor advised instructions.
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