Osteoporosis: Are You At Risk?
Osteoporosis is a bone disease that occurs when the body loses too much bone. As a result, bones become weak and may break from a fall, or in serious cases, from minor bumps and even sneezing. An estimated eight million women and two million men in the United States have osteoporosis. It is now responsible for more than two million fractures each year. Six out of 10 people who break a hip never fully regain their former level of independence. Fortunately, we can decrease our chances of getting it and even prevent the disease from getting worse if you already do have it. If you are interested in learning more, keep on reading to find out helpful exercises you can incorporate for strong and healthy bones.
1. Lift weights
This can be done with dumbbells, resistance bands, water bottles, or your own body weight. All you need is 20 minutes twice a week to maintain strong bones. Here are 12 different exercises you can try at home. Complete the recommended repetitions for 1 set. As you build more strength, aim for 2-3 sets.
Squat and press 15 reps
Forward Lunges and lateral raise 20 reps
DB step ups 15 reps
2 arm rows 15 reps
Curl and upright row15 reps
Triceps kickback 12 reps
Side bicycle crunches 20 reps total
Heel taps 20 reps total
Modified pushups 10 reps
Modified plank hold 30 seconds
2. Weight bearing Aerobic Activities
Accompanied with resistance training, you not only reap the benefits of strong muscles and bones, but also a healthy heart, lifted mood, and better sleep!
Running (Skip this one if you already have osteoporosis)
Elliptical training machines
3. Flexibility Exercises
Flexibility helps improve your range of motion and it’s best done after your exercise regimen or after a good 10-minute warm up when your muscles are warm.
Upper back stretch
Lower back stretch
4. Balance Exercises
By improving your balance, you can help prevent future falls especially if you already have osteoporosis. Simple exercises such as standing on one leg or movement-based exercises such as tai chi can improve your stability and balance.
The Takeaway Message
It is never too late to start an exercise program to help strengthen your muscles, bones, and heart. Along with a well-balanced diet with the recommended 400 IU of Vitamin D and 1000 mg of calcium, and avoiding smoking, you are well on your way to a healthy lifestyle routine that can help prevent many diseases, especially osteoporosis.
Learn more about disease prevention and other wellness programs offered by Wellness Workdays.
Written by: Ruby Khatchaturian, Wellness Workdays Dietetic Intern
2. Mayo Clinic