Osteoporosis and Menopause
What can you do about osteoporosis and menopause? First, learn the facts. Symptoms of osteoporosis include very weak and easily breakable bones. It occurs in women because of the decline in estrogen starting during menopause, leaving many post-menopausal women with a higher risk of developing this condition.
Since osteoporosis and menopause is the result of declining estrogen, you might be more susceptible if you reach menopause after a hysterectomy or before natural menopause occurs. It is also among the symptoms of early perimenopause. There are several measures that can be taken to prevent—or lessen the impact of—osteoporosis after menopause:
• Build mass, and maintain bone strength, through weight-bearing exercise (walking, running, stair climbing, lifting weights);
• Eat foods rich in calcium and vitamin D. Supplements might be beneficial if you feel you are not getting the calcium levels you need through your diet;
• Combine strengthening exercises with yoga for menopause to increase balance and help prevent falls which can result in broken bones.
If you think you’re at risk, there are bone density tests to assess the strength of your bones. A DEXA-scan can help determine how solid your bones are. Ask your doctor if this is right for you.
Menopause bone loss is usually most rapid in the first few years after menopause. Exercise is among the top preventive measures today for osteoporosis and menopause.