Women experience menopause at a certain age, which is an extremely normal and universal phenomenon. Menopause symptoms vary from person to person. Since they no longer have to deal with the discomfort and special care of menstruation, this is a relief for some. For others, however, menopause can be extremely uncomfortable, accompanied by anxiety, hot flashes, mood swings, and hormonal imbalances. Post menopause, women’s cardiovascular and bone health are significantly compromised.
Osteoporosis is a disease that weakens bones and increases the likelihood of sudden, unexpected injuries. Osteoporosis, which literally means “porous bones,” causes a greater loss of bone mass and strength. The disease is often painless and symptom-free. In this article, we discuss how you can lower your risk of osteoporosis as you approach menopause.
These factors may lower your risk of osteoporosis as you approach menopause:
1. Eat more calcium
Getting enough calcium throughout your life will help you maintain and rebuild strong bones. Dark green leafy vegetables like kale, spinach, and broccoli, low-fat dairy products, canned fish with bones like salmon, calcium-fortified orange juice, and bread made with calcium-fortified flour are all excellent sources of calcium.
2. Exercise regularly
Create a regular fitness plan. Exercise strengthens muscles and bones and prevents bone loss. It also supports your continued mobility and activity. The best exercise to prevent osteoporosis involves weight bearing and should be done at least three to four times a week. Exercises that involve weight bearing include dancing, walking, jogging, tennis, and other sports. Strength and balance training can also help you stay upright and avoid falls, which lowers your risk of fractures.
3. Get more vitamin D
Vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium. Most people’s bodies can produce enough vitamin D if they spend a total of 20 minutes in the sun every day. Aside from supplements, other sources of vitamin D include eggs, fatty fish like salmon, fortified cereals, and milk. You should discuss with your doctor how much is appropriate, as too much could damage your kidneys or potentially decrease your bone mass.
4. Research your medications
Bone loss can be accelerated by steroids, some breast cancer treatments, seizure medications, blood thinners, and thyroid medications. If you’re taking any of these drugs, discuss with your doctor how you can lower your risk of bone loss through diet, lifestyle changes, and possibly additional medications.
5. Consider estrogen
A hormone produced by the ovaries called estrogen helps prevent bone loss. It is a therapy option for osteoporosis prevention. The body’s ability to absorb and store calcium is enhanced by replacing the estrogen that is lost during menopause (when the ovaries stop producing most of the estrogen). However, due to the dangers associated with estrogen therapy, it is only recommended for women who are at high risk for osteoporosis and/or have severe menopausal symptoms.
6. Avoid unhealthy substances
Avoid smoking and drink in moderation. Smoking decreases the amount of estrogen your body produces, which protects bones. Drinking too much alcohol can weaken your bones and make you more likely to fall and break a bone.
Follow these preventive measures to lower your risk of osteoporosis if you’re expecting menopause.
Disclaimer: This content, including advice, provides general information only. It in no way replaces a qualified medical report. Always consult a specialist or your GP for more information. NDTV takes no responsibility for this information.