Osteoporosis

Dec 17, 2015 by David Tio Topics: Osteoporosis

Introduction

Osteoporosis or bone loss is a deadly disease that affects the majority of older adults in modern societies. In countries like America, it is estimated that 9 out of 10 older adults, including both men and women, suffer some degree of bone loss.

In Singapore, the rate of osteoporosis has increased dramatically over the past three decades – by 5-fold in the case of women over 50 years old, and by 1.5 times in the case of men over 50.

Studies in the US, Singapore and other countries show that up to 1 in 3 people who suffer hip fractures due to osteoporosis die within one year. Most of the rest become permanently disabled and bed-ridden.

Silent Killer

Osteoporosis is often called a “silent killer” because sufferers do not experience any obvious symptoms. Osteoporosis sufferers generally DO NOT KNOW that they have the disease – until it is too late, when a fall or a hard knock results in serious bone fracture.

Lifestyle advice

Osteoporosis is very much a lifestyle disease.

It is caused primarily by the modern diet – high in protein, sugar, phosphorus (found abundantly in soft drinks) and food chemicals – as well as an inactive lifestyle and inadequate exposure to sunlight.

Contrary to what most nutritionists, dieticians, doctors and milk advertisements tell you, osteoporosis is NOT due to inadequate intake of milk and calcium.

Populations with the highest intake of calcium in their diet – the Eskimos, Americans and Europeans – have the HIGHEST rates of osteoporosis. In rural societies in Asia and Africa, where most adults do not drink any milk at all, the rate of osteoporosis is very low.

Hormonal changes experienced by women after menopause might aggravate osteoporosis. But this is also not the real cause. Women in rural societies generally do not get osteoporosis after menopause.

It is also important to note that milk is NOT the best natural source of calcium. The calcium in modern, processed milk is not easily absorbed by the body. Moreover, milk being a high-protein food, actually contributes to osteoporosis!

Foods like seaweeds, seeds and nuts – which are widely consumed in Asian society – have far higher content of calcium than milk, and their calcium is more easily absorbed. In particular, sesame seeds and hijiki seaweed have up to 14 times as much calcium as milk.

These foods are also rich in other minerals that are vital to building strong bones. Calcium alone will only build BIG bones, but not STRONG bones.

At Osteopathic Treatment Centre, our osteopaths are fully qualified to advise you on lifestyle changes that can help you prevent osteoporosis. If you already have the disease, you can still prevent it from worsening.

Our osteopaths are also qualified to prescribe nutritional supplements that will strengthen your bones.