Study: Exercise strengthens fight against osteoporosis
If you want to keep your bones healthy and cut the chances of developing osteoporosis, then get moving, researchers advise.
In a new report from the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) entitled "Move it or Lose it," experts contend that exercise is a great way to build and maintain bones and prevent fractures.
"Exercise builds strong muscles, which in turn builds strong bones," writes Dr. Helmut Minne, an osteopath and board member of the IOF. "Exercise also improves muscle control, balance and coordination, and reduces the risk of falling or suffering a fracture during a fall…So, let's mobilize our energy, let's build our bones, let's move!"
Osteoporosis results in the density and quality of bones being reduced, which in turn leads to weakness of the skeleton and increased risk of fracture. As many as one-third of women and one in five men over 50 suffer from the condition, higher incidence rates than for breast cancer and prostate cancer, the report notes.
Bones, like muscles, can grow or shrink, so not using them can lead to their deterioration, the report explains. That's why in addition to bone-building calcium, exercise is crucial to bone health.
"Recent studies have shown that in laying down the bone foundation that will serve for a lifetime, exercise is just as important as diet," the report says. "This is true throughout childhood and adolescence, but especially important around the growth spurt at puberty." The report notes that the amount of bone tissue girls accumulate between the ages of 11 to 13 is roughly equal to the amount lost during the 30 years following menopause.
So what types of exercise are bone friendly?
"Weight-bearing and high impact exercise is required to stimulate bone formation, (so) sports that involved lifting weights, running, sprinting, jumping and skipping are good," the report says, citing walking, jogging, dancing, tennis, volleyball and resistance training as useful forms of bone-building exercise.
While pointing out the benefits of these exercises, the study says more research into bone exercise is required. "There is an urgent need for further studies to improve our understanding of how and, specifically, which forms of exercise may help maintain bone mass and strength and thus help prevent fractures," the report says.
Source: Yahoo Nutrition & Fitness; Health-Cares.net