Osteoporosis Foundation
A Lifetime of Strong Bones
Stop Osteoporosis

How do you prevent Osteoporosis?

1. Be physically active every day
2. Eat a healthy Calcium-rich diet
3. Get a bone mineral density test

 Be physically active every day

  • More than half of all Americans do not get enough physical activity to strengthen their bones.
  • Physical activity is one of the most important ways to reduce your chances of falling.
  • Physical activity makes you stronger, improves balance and coordination, and improves overall health.
  • Children, tweens and teens should getat least one hour of physical activity every day. Jumping rope, running, skateboarding, and riding bikes are enjoyable activities that also build strong bones. 
  • Adults should get at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity every day. Simple activities like walking and stair climbing will strengthen the bones that are exercised.
  • Activities like dancing, Yoga and Tai Chi can also be very effective.
  • Physical activities in the sun provides Vitamin D that increases Calcium absorption.

Children, Tweens & Teens and their Parents must:

  • Know and Understand that they are at greater risk for poor bone health because of rapidly growing bones and poor diet
  • Must do at least one hour of physical activity a day
  • Increase Calcium and Vitamin D during teens

During the Rapid Growth and Growth years of Bone Health (children, tweens, teens through early thirties), it is vital to engage in some form of daily physical activity.
 

Citation
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Bone Health and Osteoporosis: A Report of the Surgeon General. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Surgeon General, 2004

 Eat a healthy diet

  • The average American eats far too little Calcium and vitamin D for good bone health.
  • Follow recommended daily amounts.
  • High levels of Calcium can be found in milk, leafy green vegetables, soybeans, yogurt, cheese, and fortified orange juice.
  • Vitamin D is produced in the skin by exposure to the sun and is found in fortified milk and other foods.
  • For those individuals not getting enough Calcium and vitamin D in the diet, supplements can be helpful.
  • Maintain a healthy body weight.
  • Don’t smoke.
  • Limit alcohol intake.
  • Take extra Calcium and Vitamin D over age 50.

 Get a bone mineral density test

  • All women over 65 and anyone who has a bone fracture after age 50 should get a bone density test.
  • Adults with significant risk factors should also get a bone density test.
  • Discuss significant risks with a health care professional:
    • Medications
    • Family history
    • Recent falls or broken bones
  • Bone density tests use x-rays or sound waves to measure the strength of the bones.
  • Bone density tests are safe, painless, quick (5-10 minutes) and indicate the health of bones
  • Take eye exam to check for visual impairments
  • Take medication, if indicated, to prevent bone loss or build new bone