Osteoporosis is a disease of the bones which causes them to be more prone to fracture. Osteoporosis causes the bones to become weak and brittle and usually affects older women. Women usually experience this condition after menopause and can sometimes develop a curvature of the spine due to a collapse of the vertebrae. Fracture of the bones are a common occurance with women over the age of 50. Bone fractures can often occur in areas such as the hip, wrist, and spine. Although the development of this disease is common among older women, building strong bones should begin early.

A deficiency of calcium and vitamin D are contributing factors in the development of osteoporosis. Eating foods rich in calcium and vitamin D are essential to the development of strong healthy bones. Dairy products such as yogurt, milk, and cheese are are excellent sources of calcium. Other foods that contain calcium are spinach, broccoli, green leafy vegetables, sardines, and almonds. Foods enriched with added calcium can be an excellent way to obtain adequate calcium consumption. Vitamin D plays a crucial role in the prevention of osteoporosis because it helps the body to absorb calcium. Without vitamin D, absorbtion of calcium from foods would not be possible.

Vitamin D can be obtained from either diet or sunlight. Direct sunlight exposure produces vitamin D in the body. Foods fortified with vitamin D include fish, liver, dairy produucts ect.. Other sources of vitamin D can come in the form of suppliments. Osteoporosis can also be prevented with exercise. Weight bearing exercises are the most beneficial for building strong bones. Lifting free weights or using a weight machine can help the bones become stronger. Developing a healthy proactive attitude toward bone loss can help to prevent osteoporosis. Exercise in combination with calcium rich foods can help to prevent osteoporosis.

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