Understanding Osteoporosis in Women
Osteoporosis describes the weakening of the bones. The condition commonly occurs in women, particularly after menopause but is also associated with decreased activity and lack of some important vitamins and minerals. The bones begin to decalcify, losing their density and strength. They become more fragile and are increasingly susceptible to fractures even from simple falls. 50% of women are affected by osteoporosis. There is a very strong correlation between the decrease in estrogen with menopause and osteoporosis. Women will lose 2-7% of their bone mass each year without hormone replacement . And up to 30% of women over age 50 will experience a fracture related to osteoporosis
Facts about Osteoporosis
- 50% of women are affected by osteoporosis.
- There is a very strong correlation between the decrease in estrogen with menopause and osteoporosis
- Women will lose 2-7% of their bone mass each year without hormone replacement
- Up to 30% of women over age 50 will experience a fracture related to osteoporosis
What are the symptoms of osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis is sometimes referred to as a silent killer. This is because there are often no associated signs or symptoms until you sustain an injury. Healthy strong bones show up on xrays as a white density. Osteoporotic bones with less calcium density shows up as more translucent.
Causes of osteoporosis in women
Osteoporosis is caused by any condition that breaks the balance between new bone growth and bone reabsorption. The main causes include malnutrition where you don’t have enough calcium to support bone growth, inactivity where your body doesn’t feel the need to support bone growth, and decreased hormonal support.
Many hormones regulate bone growth and strength including estrogens, progesterone, testosterone, and DHEA. They are referred as bioprotective to bone growth. Estrogen is arguably the most important of the hormones in regulating the health of your bones. Estrogen regulates the interaction between osteoblasts which in the presence of calcium lays down new and healthy bone, and osteoclasts which helps eliminate older and less healthy bone. As estrogen decreases with age into menopause, the osteoclasts begin to dominate the osteoblasts. The result is an increase in the resorption of bone; the bone becomes weaker, and you are increasingly susceptible to fractures.
Prevention and treatment of osteoporosis in women
The Med-Health 360 prescription for healthy bones emphasizes diet, activity, and hormonal health. Hormone levels including estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and DHEA are checked, your diet is analyzed for proper levels of estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and DHEA, and a fitness regimen is encouraged.