Osteoporosis is a disease that affects many people from a certain age (especially women), and can have very negative consequences in old age. Physical exercise helps prevent and treat osteoporosis and the negative consequences that go with it such as fractures.
To prevent osteoporosis must be done from an early age, and it is shown that physical exercise in osteoporosis helps both prevention and to minimize the consequences once it has occurred.
What is osteoporosis?
The osteoporosis is the loss of bone density body. This means you lose consistency (become porous, hence the name of the disease) and become more brittle.
Usually evident in old age, and affects more women due to menopause (the decrease producciónd hormone affects the bone), although it also affects men.
Consequences of osteoporosis
Osteoporosis itself does not have to give alarming symptoms. Unless you are an advanced case for example with crushed vertebrae that cause pain, it does not have to give discomfort.
The problem is that, since the weakened bone, it is easier for a fall, shock or stress cause a fracture. They are frequent especially fractures of the hip, wrist, and spine.
Therefore, the real problem of osteoporosis is that the bone is more prone to fractures, which can become very disabling, especially if they occur in older people. In these cases, the recovery is slower, and can cause a significant loss of autonomy for dare life activities (bathing, dressing, walking …).
The bone as living tissue
It is common to think of the skeleton as a frame supporting muscles, ligaments, organs and other tissues. The error is in believing that bone is a support no more.
Bone is a living tissue that is constantly changing, being remodeled to suit the needs of the organism. In bone areas under load or muscular tension by reinforcing lines of force, as a builder reinforces the areas of a building that has to bear more weight placing columns or buttresses.
Load and exercise as bone remodeling
The main stimuli that cause bone changes to accommodate efforts are loading and muscle pulls.
The load, i.e. simply develop the daily activities standing or walking, overcoming the resistance of gravity, or engaging in activities requiring transport weight (carrying a suitcase or backpack to work, shopping bags, carry your little son …) are stimuli that promote bone strengthening structures of the body, especially in those areas that are greater load bearing points.
That is why astronauts or, without going any further, people who spend a long time without making activity (prolonged Patients in hospital due to illness), bone loses this very solid structure is weakened, because the body does not maintain something not it is used, in the same way that the muscle mass is also lost in these situations.
When performing the exercise, cause stimuli on bone in which inserted the muscular traction, elongations, and contractions of the muscle. In the same way, that physical exercise stimulates the muscle fibers to grow, also the same stress causes reinforcements develop in the bone to keep him ready to respond to these stresses.
Food, medication, and osteoporosis
Besides loads and physical effort, a key to maintaining bone in good measure is to carry out a balanced, healthy and with a good supply of calcium supply. In addition, it is also necessary, a sun exposure (about fifteen minutes three times a week is enough) for vitamin D, which acts in the body helping to bind calcium to the bones occurs.
There are medications that provide calcium to the body. The problem is that are usually taken when it is too late, i.e. when there are clear signs of osteoporosis. In these cases, the margin improvement produced by drugs is very limited. Not significantly, increase bone density as to make them more resistant to fractures alone will not lead to improvement. If all other factors remain unchanged (avoid a sedentary lifestyle, proper exercise intensity healthy eating …) the risk of fractures will remain.
The practice of exercise prevents osteoporosis and improves
As we know, osteoporosis is deterioration in our bones by the weakening of the membranes that form. This disease affects our skeletal system diminishing its strength and quality, as well as affecting the way of life of people who suffer.
Despite being a delicate degenerative disease that carries a specific treatment, osteoporosis can be prevented, and in the case of suffering, improve by exercising. Many people think that sports if you suffer from this disease is bad, something that is far from reality, and that sport helps our bones in many ways.
The practice of sport by people with osteoporosis helps keep bones and muscles active. This is because our circulation will improve, as a result of exercise, and with it the risk of all parts of our body, thereby facilitating sending nutrients. This is one of the main reasons why the bone is strengthened if we practice exercise.
Although no conclusive studies there is to it, it has been found that people who play sports and have osteoporosis keep longer their strong bones and slow the weakening of these. It is a fact that is because exercise stimulates the strengthening not only our muscles but also our bones at the same time.
The same applies to people who do not yet suffer from osteoporosis. Sport is a good form of prevention because it keeps bones strong and young longer; nourished of all substances they need to be in perfect condition.
It is true that a patient of osteoporosis should be more careful when playing sports. It is important to repair the intensity of exercise, and it should not be too high, especially in the first months of training. Do not forget that the risk of injury in these people is higher, so you have to minimize the impact until the bone will not grow to level up.
We should note that the exercises that flex column is prohibited for sufferers of osteoporosis pose a significant risk to this part of the body. For the rest, it is important that exercise is carried out, but yes, always supervised by a professional who knows how to guide these people in the sport suitable for your state.
Recommendations for preventing osteoporosis
The osteoporosis is one of those diseases that sooner or later will affect us and that will be more or less severe depending on our usual life. It is best not to lose sight and try to incorporate into our habits recommendations to prevent it.
This time, we will provide a series of simple ideas to try to maintain balance in the density of our bones. They will not be solutions for those who are already diagnosed but they can help maintain levels.
- Calcium and vitamin D are the cornerstones of our bones. The more calcium -rich foods include milk, yogurt, and cheese. Vitamin D from the sun and get some food. Basking with caution about 10 or 15 minutes a day and consumes oily fish frequently.
- It leads an active life as usual: Do exercise at least 3 times a week, and if it is more often the better. Children and young people should exercise every day.
- Not for being older, we need less calcium than a child does. Pregnant women, women who are nursing or people over 50 should take 1,200 to 1,500 mg of calcium daily (as a teenager).
- After menopause, bone loss accelerates. It is essential to ensure optimal intake of calcium and vitamin D at this stage. Discuss it with your doctor.
- People with a disease such as anorexia, lactose intolerance, treatment with corticosteroids, vegetarian strict or not sunbathers, should increase the intake of calcium and vitamin D under your doctor’s supervision because they have a higher risk osteoporosis and fractures.
Having presented the issue in the previous post on exercise and osteoporosis, in this case, we will focus on the list and explain some of the benefits of physical exercise as prevention and treatment of osteoporosis.
The exercise in osteoporosis is a basic pillar that must not be forgotten in favor of other treatments (medical, pharmacological …) but it is an element to be included in a comprehensive treatment for reducing the damage caused by this disease.
Benefits of exercise in osteoporosis
A muscular level: Stimulates muscle development, which affects bone remodeling, which becomes more resistant, prepared to withstand stresses and strains. In addition, a powerful muscle acts to protect the bone against hits or falls.
A joint level: Physical exercise stimulates joint mobility, which makes the person more prepared to respond to situations such imbalances, avoiding the fall.
Balance and Coordination: Exercise makes the person more prepared to respond to unexpected stimuli. In the exercise strength, endurance, balance, and coordination work, which helps the body to be active and prepared, being less prone to falls and having greater endurance if they occur?
Mentally: It has more than proven that activity and exercise help the person is more mentally agile. This is especially important in old age because as balance and coordination skills rely heavily on mental abilities, but need to be trained from youth to get the best results.
At the social level: A risk of osteoporosis is suffering a fall at home causing a fracture and no one around to meet that person. An active, healthy person that relates to others increases their network of acquaintances, which, besides serving as support and encouragement, can be vital in an emergency. The person is a whole, and social relationships help minimize the negative consequences of an accident.
Exercise as a preventive measure for osteoporosis
For all this, we must be clear that osteoporosis is not prevented at age 50 when the doctor tells us that the evidence shows signs of the disease, but we must prevent osteoporosis from youth.
The power you have as a child, young adult is going to make your body is in shape when you get older. When taking calcium and osteoporosis begins is shown not to significantly reduce the risk of fracture. We must begin to prevent from school.
A person accustomed to exercise; outdoor activity and other healthy habits will arrive prepared at the age where osteoporosis can start giving problems. Not only because exercise helps maintain bone density, but because a person accustomed to exercise is less prone to physical inactivity, and has better balance, coordination, and other resources to at least reduce the impact of diseases such as osteoporosis.
Exercise as a treatment for osteoporosis
This does not mean that you cannot do anything once it is older, it has had a sedentary lifestyle and the doctor tells you that you have osteoporosis.
While prevention is much more effective when done from young, once the disease begins and can still do much to reduce the negative effects it produces.
We must be clear: medications, diet (intake of milk, calcium, vitamin D …) alone will not significantly improve the problem. Bone density will rise, but not enough to reduce the risk of fracture.
The exercise will have to be adapted to the needs of each person, working mostly muscle strength and balance, coordination and joint mobility.
Osteoporosis is a disease that attacks silently, affecting a large number of men and women, and very limiting consequences if fractures occur, so it is vital to care of the person (physical exercise, healthy habits, food, social environment …) to make the negative consequences disappear or, at least, be minimal.
In addition to medication for osteoporosis (calcium supplements …) you require a healthy lifestyle (sun …) and active, with intense exercise (adapted to the person), good (healthy, balanced) and taking into account that osteoporosis is a disease that affects the whole body, so it is necessary to keep the body in good working order to cope or, better yet, prevent it.Tags: osteoporosis, prevent, treat osteoporosis