The following points are useful in maintaining a good bone health:
Taking a diet with good calcium content: Check out this page which gives you list of calcium rich foods. Bone is built up using calcium so it is important you take calcium rich foods. It is more important in growing children as the cartilage scaffold is laid with calcium.
Physical activity: People with regular exercises and physical activity have stronger bones than those without activity.
Smoking and Alcohol use: There is very strong evidence that smoking and alcohol use reduce the strength of bone and contribute to Osteoporosis ( a condition where the strength of the bones is reduced)
Hormone disorders: Hormones from Thyroid gland, parathyroid gland, Ovaries and Testes influence the strength of the bone. So any disorders with these hormones reduces the strength of the bones. Menopause in women and Andropause in men with reduce the sex hormone levels and so they are at risk of osteoporosis
Gender: Females have a higher risk of developing osteoporosis.
Age: As we age, we lose calcium from bone and develop osteopenia ( weak bone which is not very weak as to break on your own weight as seen in osteoporosis)
Size: Thin individuals are at higher risk of developing osteoporosis
Race: White and Asians are at higher risk of developing osteoporosis
Family history: The risk of osteoporosis is higher in people who have a parent or sibling who had osteoporosis
Eating disorders and gastrointestinal conditions: People with the following conditions have increased risk of osteoporosis: Anorexia, Bullemia, Chron’s disease, Gastrectomy, Weight loss surgery (Bariatric surgery), Caeliac disease
Medications: Long term steroids like prednisolone, dexamethasone cause osteoporosis. Anti epileptics like phenytoin, certain cancer drugs and immunomodulators like Methotrexate, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors cause osteoporosis. If you are on these drugs, you may need to have your bone strength checked at regular intervals.
Lack of adequate sunlight: This leads to Vitamin D deficiency which in turn affects Calcium absorption from your gut.
What can you do to maintain good bone health?
- Take regular exercises
- Take plenty of calcium rich foods
- Make sure you get adequate Vitamin D by exposure to sun or by supplements
- Avoid smoking and alcohol abuse and excessive caffeine use
- Avoid a Sedentary lifestyle