Its a progressive bonedisease that is characterised by a decrease in bone mass and density and that leads to an increased risk of fracture. In osteoporosis, the bone mineral density (BMD) is reduced, bone microarchitecture deteriorates, and the amount and variety of proteins in bone are altered.
Osteoporosis causes bones to become weak and brittle —- so brittle that a fall or even mild stresses like bending over or coughing can cause a fracture. Osteoporosis-related fractures most commonly occur in the hip, wrist or spine. Bone is living tissue, which is constantly being absorbed and replaced. Osteoporosis occurs when the creation of new bone doesn’t keep up with the removal of old bone. Osteoporosis affects men and women of all races; but white and Asian women–especially after menopause–are at highest risk. Medications, healthy diet and weight bearing exercise can help prevent bone loss or strengthen already weak bones.
A weight bearing exercise is any exercise that has your legs and feet holding all of your weight. An example of this would be walking, yoga or even dancing.
The form of osteoporosis most common in women after menopause is referred to as primary type 1 or postmenopausal osteoporosis. Primary type 2 osteoporosis or senile osteoporosis occurs after age 75 and is seen in both females and males at a ratio of 2:1. Secondary osteoporosis may arise at any age and affect men and women equally. This form results from chronic predisposing medical problems or disease, or prolonged use of medications such as glucocorticoids, when the disease is called steroid- or glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis.
The risk of osteoporosis fractures can be reduced with lifestyle changes and in those with previous osteoporosis related fractures medications. Lifestyle change includes diet, exercise, and preventing falls. The utility of calcium and vitamin D is questionable in most. Bisphosphonates are useful in those with previous fractures from osteoporosis but are of minimal benefit in those who have osteoporosis but no previous fractures. Osteoporosis is a component of the frailty syndrome.
Take the problem of Astronauts with osteoporosis:
Space travel has made it widely known that a stay outside the atmosphere – and thus outside the earth’s gravitational influence – disturbs the metabolism irreparably: the human body does not need any hard bones in zero-gravity, which leads to decalcification. A four year study of the ‘International Space Station’ showed that the bones of astronauts did not regenerate after even one year past their return to earth.
Anti-gravitational training is the key to osteoporosis if you can handle it (like jumping on a trampeline) Actual studies show that physical anti-gravitational activity helps the effected patients to regain their mobility and lessen the risk of bone fractures .
Benefits of exercise
Women who have been physically active throughout their lives generally have stronger bones than do women who have led more sedentary lives. But it’s never too late to start exercising. For postmenopausal women, regular physical activity can:
Increase your muscle strength
Improve your balance
Make you better able to carry out daily tasks and activities
Maintain or improve your posture
Relieve or decrease pain
Improve your sense of well-being
Exercising if you have osteoporosis means finding the safest, most enjoyable activities for you given your overall health and amount of bone loss. There’s no one-size-fits-all prescription.
Before you start
Consult your doctor before starting any exercise program for osteoporosis. You may need some tests first, including:
Bone density measurement
In the meantime, think about what kind of activities you enjoy most. If you choose an exercise you enjoy, you’re more likely to stick with it over time.