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May is National Osteoporosis Awareness and Prevention Month

Posted by JCC Pittsburgh on June 18, 2015

A time to remember the importance of preventing osteoporosis, a disease that causes bones to become weak and brittle. Half of all women (and one-quarter of men over 50) will break a bone due to osteoporosis, according to the National Institutes of Health. But this disease is largely preventable through healthy lifestyle choices. Strengthen your bones from this month forward by starting with these simple tips.

  1. Know your calcium needs. Most adults need 1,000 to 1200 mg each day, but your needs may vary based on your age or risk level. Track your daily intake by reading labels and using the Nutrition Tracker.
  2. Limit caffeine. Whether from coffee, tea, or soda, it interferes with calcium absorption. Don’t consume caffeine along with your calcium-rich foods of supplements and limit your daily intake to 300mg or less.
  3. Don’t smoke. The longer you smoke, the more likely you are to have low bone mass and serious fractures. Smoking also decreases estrogen levels, another risk factor for thinning bones. Take steps to quit today.
  4. Take a brisk walk. This weight-bearing exercise helps strengthen bones. Leisurely walking doesn’t offer the same benefits, so keep up your intensity level for at least 20 minutes.

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