Building bone at any age

The nature of healthy bones

susanIt’s never too late to strengthen your bones. The author ofBetter Bones, Better Body explains what you can do now to help prevent osteoporosis later.

(Adapted from an article published in Let’s Live magazine, October 2000.)

Bone health is our birthright. Yet, today in the US, 10 million individuals already have osteoporosis and 18 million more have low bone density, placing them at risk for the disease. In this country, 1.5 million osteoporotic fractures occur each year, 20% being potentially devastating hip fractures. Half of all American Caucasian women aged 50 and older in the United States and one out of eight men over 50 will suffer an osteoporotic fracture, the direct costs of which now reach 10-15 billion dollars a year.

How do we go about reclaiming lifelong bone health? At the Better Bones Foundation, a nonprofit organization based in Syracuse, NY, that aims to rethink osteoporosis from an anthropological perspective, we implement a comprehensive Women’s Health Network Better Bones Package® at each stage of life. Although many people may think of osteoporosis as an old woman’s disease, bone health is important to both sexes and all age groups.

Here are just a few ways you can build better bones at any age. Most of these recommendations apply to both genders, with some additional highlights for each:

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