- Osteoporosis is primarily related to aging.
- 377,000 new fractures due to osteoporosis are to be deplored each year in France
Bone is a very living tissue that constantly undergoes a process of renewal and repair.
With age, this process decreases resulting in less bone strength and more frequent risk of fracture: it is called osteoporosis.
Public health issue
According to Inserm, osteoporosis and the fractures associated with it represent a major public health problem: around the age of 65, it is estimated that 39% of women suffer from osteoporosis.
Among those aged 80 and over, this proportion rises to 70%.
There are also other secondary factors of osteoporosis, which occurs as a result of diseases or treatments such as hormonal disorders (overactive thyroid gland or parathyroid glands), rheumatoid arthritis, certain tumors, or even severe diseases intestine, kidneys or liver.
In addition, certain treatments, such as high doses of cortisone or drugs used in the treatment of breast and prostate cancer, can also induce long-term osteoporosis.
Increase bone density
In men, excessive consumption of alcohol and tobacco is a risk factor, and the adoption of certain habits, in particular physical activity and diet, helps to fight against osteoporosis.
Regarding physical activity, training with weights can increase bone density and reduce inflammation.
In postmenopausal women, regular physical activity can slow down the loss of bone density, in the elderly, it will, moreover, maintain the muscles and balance, thus reducing the risk of falls and fractures.
In children, regardless of the physical activity chosen, it has been found to lead to a gain in bone mineral density – crucial for bone strength – by 10 to 20% compared to sedentary adolescents.
On the diet side, it is advisable to monitor your calcium intake, which is found in dairy products but not only: in sardines, certain leafy green vegetables such as kale and beans in particular
The elderly should also follow a diet containing 1 to 1.5 g/d of calcium, especially since aging leads to a decrease in the intestinal absorption of calcium.
Systematic calcium and vitamin D supplementation has been shown to reduce the risk of fracture in deficient elderly women living in a geriatric institution.
On the other hand, several studies have now shown that there is no point in systematically offering this supplementation to an elderly population living normally.
Boosting vitamin D intake is also recommended for maintaining balanced calcium levels.
Vitamin D found mainly in fish (herring, mackerel, sardines, cod liver) but also in dark chocolate for example and olive oil. allows the absorption of calcium by the intestine, and also allows these minerals to be reabsorbed in the kidneys.
Vitamin D also acts on bone resorption: a daily intake of 400 to 800 IU of vitamin D is therefore recommended.
Among the other foods beneficial for bone health, we note those rich in magnesium and zinc (nuts, legumes), those rich in proteins such as eggs, soy, certain meats, legumes…
Indeed, increasing your protein intake by 15%, compared to official recommendations, offers older people a higher bone mineral density and a reduced risk of vertebral fracture.