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Show 1093: How to Keep Your Bones Strong

Learn how to keep your bones strong throughout your life and what you can do to counteract osteoporosis if you develop it.
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How to Keep Your Bones Strong

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Osteoporosis, weakened bones, affects about 10 million Americans. But low bone density is even more common. According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, about half of adults over 50 are at risk for a fracture. How can you minimize your risk and keep your bones strong?

Preventing Osteoporosis:

Some of the factors that lead to osteoporosis can’t be avoided. Genetics is chief among these. If your grandparents and parents suffered from weak bones and fractures, your chances of osteoporosis are higher than average.

Beyond Genetics to Many Risk Factors:

That doesn’t mean there is nothing you can do, however. It just may mean you’ll have to try harder to keep your bones strong. Getting adequate amounts of vitamin D and calcium is important. Not smoking-or quitting if you do smoke-is just as critical.

Exercise throughout our lives sends crucial signals to our bones that we need them and helps keep them strong. To get the best benefit from exercise, it should be something in which the foot hits the ground: walking, skipping, jumping, dancing, tennis, etc. Other forms of exercise such as swimming or biking are also good for your health, but they do less to keep your bones strong.

Learn how doctors detect osteoporosis with DXA technology, and how they treat it if they discover you have it. You’ll also find out why men too need to be concerned about bone health.

This Week’s Guest:

Abby G. Abelson, MD, FACR, is Chair of the Department of Rheumatic and Immunologic Diseases of the Orthopaedic and Rheumatology Institute and Education Program Director in the Department of Rheumatologic and Immunologic Diseases at Cleveland Clinic. Her book is The Cleveland Clinic Guide to Osteoporosis.

Listen to the Podcast:

The podcast of this program will be available the Monday after the broadcast date. The show can be streamed online from this site and podcasts can be downloaded for free. CDs may be purchased at any time after broadcast for $9.99.

Buy the CD or use the dropdown menu to download the mp3.

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies..
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