by,Dr.Gaurav Khera-orthopaedic surgeon – joint replacement and sports injuries, Apollo spectra Delhi
You will be shocked to know that Vitamin D deficiency in younger people can invite a condition known as osteopenia wherein one loses his/her bone mass. Yes, you have heard it right! Now, youngsters are falling l prey to this condition. Thus, to improve your bone mineral density and live a disease-free life, it is essential to swear by a diet rich in foods loaded with Vitamin D and calcium, exercising on a daily basis, and cutting down on alcohol and smoking. World Osteoporosis Day, we tell you why it is vital to maintain your bone health.
Vitamin D, also known as the ‘Sunshine vitamin,’ is of the essential nutrients that are required to maintain the proper functioning of the body. Did you know? It affects your metabolism, weight, and even how the other organs of your body tend to function. Vitamin D helps in the absorption of calcium, and this can further allow you to strengthen your bones. Hence, people will help to keep diseases like osteomalacia, osteoporosis, depression, respiratory infections, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and even osteopenia at bay. But, nowadays, youngsters are suffering from a condition called osteopenia owing to the lack of vitamin D in the diet and even following an unhealthy lifestyle. Here, we explain to you about this condition and why it is the need of the hour to embrace a healthy lifestyle.
What is osteopenia?
If your bones become weaker and you even tend to lose the bone mass then you may be suffering from osteopenia. This condition kicks-in when one’s bones become brittle due to the loss of calcium. Furthermore, those having this condition can also get osteoporosis. For people with low bone mass, certain medical conditions like an overactive thyroid or certain medications can lead to this condition. Likewise, not exercising, carbonated beverages and smoking and alcohol can also be the culprits. Also, early menopause and even people having a family history of osteopenia or even those with osteoporosis may suffer from osteopenia.
The symptoms: Fractures can occur but it happens when one may get osteoporosis as people with osteopenia may encounter osteoporosis. Remember that osteopenia and osteoporosis are two different conditions, and osteopenia is not as severe as osteoporosis is.
This is how you can prevent this condition
· A diet loaded with foods dense in Vitamin D and calcium is recommended for people with osteopenia. If you suffer from this condition then you must include low-fat dairy products, broccoli, salmon, sardine, beans, spinach, orange juice, cereals, soybeans, kale, and mushrooms in your diet. Make sure that your diet is jam-packed with fruits and vegetables to enhance your bone health.
· Weight-bearing and strength training can be helpful to strengthen the bones, balance, and keep you away from breaking your bones. Opt for walking, jogging, and even climbing steps. You can also do yoga, swimming, and aerobics.
· Bid adieu to alcohol and smoking. Yes, if you are one of them you is a habitual smoker or a drinker then it is the time to give upon these things, right away! Smoking and alcohol lead to low bone mineral density.
· Your doctor may also suggest you take Vitamin D and calcium supplements. Speak to your doctor about the right amount in which they should be taken and going overboard is a strict no no. It is important to treat osteopenia at the right time in order to keep osteoporosis away.