Break Myths, Not Bones... Osteo Blog 2
In my last blog, I discussed some of the basics of osteoporosis, but I am also concerned about the ongoing myths. So, here are some of the most common misconceptions about the illness. Have you heard that....
- Elderly Caucasian women are the only ones affected by osteoporosis? Not true. Although it is more common among older Caucasian women, men and women of all races − and even young people − get osteoporosis. Everyone needs to take care of their bones.
- Bone Density Tests are painful and loaded with radiation? Not true. They are painless, non-invasive, and very similar to having an X-ray... but with LESS radiation.
- Those with osteoporosis can feel a lightening or weakening of the bones? Not true. There are no symptoms with this disease, and often the first sign is a broken bone (or decrease in height).
- It's all about heredity − if your mom has it, you will too? Not true. Although family history may put you in a higher risk group, it is not a sentence. And not having a family history does not mean you cannot get the disease.
- If you drink lots of milk you will not get this illness? Not true. Milk is high in calcium (as are many other great alternatives) − a much needed mineral for bone health... but there are close to 20 other nutrients that also aid in bone health. Healthy bones are the result of balanced nutrition, exercise, and (can't say it enough) no smoking.
- It's too late to worry about osteoporosis since the damage is already done? Not true. While 'worrying' is not recommended, positive steps toward better health make a difference at every age. It is never too late to improve your bone health; and if you already have osteoporosis, there are lifestyle changes and (in some cases) medications available that help to strengthen bones.
- Osteoporosis is a lot of hype about a normal aging condition? Not true. We do not have to get this disease. The more we educate ourselves − and our youth − the more we will embrace active, healthy lifestyles and stop the illness. We are not destined to a future of broken bones and hunched backs.
And the truth?
It is never too late to contribute to our bone health... whether we are eight or eighty. A healthy lifestyle, excellent nutrition, exercise, and doing what we love adds health, hope, and strength to each day. Make no bones about it, we are seeing constant advances in research and getting smarter about our bodies from the bones on out!
Stay tuned for my next blog which will highlight some salient info about osteoporosis and the power of exercise.