American Chiropractic Association Offers Tips to Prevent Osteoporosis
ARLINGTON, Va., Oct. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Chiropractic Association says that an estimated 20 million American women suffer from osteoporosis, and 80 percent of them don't even know it.
"Osteoporosis is a chronic, progressive condition that steals bone from the body, leading to fractures of the hip, spine and wrist," said ACA national spokesperson, Dr. Jerome McAndrews. "Older people can suffer disability and even death from osteoporosis-related fractures."
Alarmingly, one in two women and one in eight men will suffer from an osteoporosis-related fracture in his or her lifetime.
"Many people confuse osteoporosis with arthritis, and wait for swollen joints and discomfort before being tested," says Dr. McAndrews. "It is never too soon to take osteoporosis seriously, since much of our future strength is predicated on the amount of activity we engage in as children. Even though osteoporosis is painless until a bone fracture occurs, it is important to find out how healthy your bones are now and take steps to prevent this disease," added Dr. McAndrews.
By heeding the following tips and advice recommended by the American Chiropractic Association, Americans, young and old can adjust their lifestyles to avoid this brittle bone disease.
* Start a regular exercise program. Walking, skipping rope, jogging, playing racquet sports, swimming and aerobics are all helpful in reducing the risk of osteoporosis. These types of weight-bearing activity for 20 minutes, three times a week, are helpful.
* Although weight lifting exercises are generally recommended, the National Osteoporosis Foundation says those suffering from osteoporosis should consult their health care practitioner before beginning a weight lifting program, because excessive strain on the bones could result.
* Those with severe osteoporosis and who have suffered from fractures may find Tai Chi, a form of martial arts, to be a beneficial strength training exercise system.
* People suffering from osteoporosis should be careful when bending and lifting heavy objects, including grandchildren. Bend from the knees, not the waist, when lifting, and try to avoid hunching while sitting or standing.
* Be sure to include calcium in your daily diet. The National Institutes of Health's recommendations are 1,000 mg/day for post-menopausal women taking estrogen; 1,500 mg/day for postmenopausal women not taking estrogen, and 1,500 mg/day for men and women over 65 years of age.
* If you are looking for a calcium supplement, try one that's highly absorbable, such as microcrystalline hydroxyapatite concentrate (MCHC), or one of the malates, fumarates, succinates, glutarates, or citrates. But don't overdo it. Taking more than the recommended amount of calcium may cause kidney stones.
* Consider taking additional nutritional supplements, such as vitamins D, C, magnesium, zinc, and silica after consulting with your doctor of chiropractic.
* Eat a healthy, balanced diet, including fresh vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds. Try broccoli, kale, collard greens, cabbage, and turnip greens. Experiment with tofu, salmon, sardines, and grains. Low-fat milk and/or yogurt are good sources of calcium. (A glass of low-fat milk and a cup of yogurt add 600 mg of calcium to your daily diet).
* Drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day (herb teas, juices and coffee are not a substitute for water.) Avoid caffeine, carbonated sodas, alcohol, baked goods and junk food.
* If you drink coffee, drink at least a similar amount of additional water along with the eight 8-ounce glasses of water.
* Watch your animal protein intake.
Risk Factors For Osteoporosis:
1. Being female-especially thin, Caucasian or Asian
2. Post- menopausal women
3. Having family history of osteoporosis
4. Being older than 40 years of age
5. Being physically inactive
6. Taking corticosteroids, thyroid medications, anticonvulsants, anticoagulants, Dilantin, diuretics, antacids with aluminum, and drugs that alter digestion, such as Ranitidine
8. Heavy consumption of alcohol
9. Heavy consumption of carbonated beverages, coffee
10. Low intake of calcium and vitamin D
11. Chronic diseases of the kidney, lung, stomach, and intestines
12. Hormonal changes because of menopause or hysterectomy
13. Lactose intolerance, low stomach acid
For more information on osteoporosis, chiropractic care or to find a doctor of chiropractic near you, call the ACA at 800-986-4636. Or visit the American Chiropractic Association's Web site at www.amerchiro.org.
(Source: American Chiropractic Association)
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