From Our Archives

Osteoporosis Prevention & Treatment
Exercise & Estrogen

  • Section 3
  • Medications that Prevent Bone Breakdown
  • Fluoride
  • Monitoring Osteoporosis Treatment Success

EXERCISE, CIGARETTE SMOKING, AND ALCOHOL

MedicineNet: How important are life style modifications in preventing or treating osteoporosis?

Dr. Truong: In addition to good nutrition with adequate calcium and vitamin D intake, regular exercise, stopping smoking, and curtailing alcohol consumption are very important in preventing and treating osteoporosis.

It is known that young men and women who exercise regularly generally develop stronger bones with higher bone density than those who lead sedentary lives. After 35 years of age, men and women start to lose bone. Adequate nutrition and regular weight-bearing exercise can slow this age-related bone loss.

Furthermore, regular weight-bearing exercises have been shown to increase bone density in both premenopausal and postmenopausal women. Regular exercise means exercising at least 30 minutes three to four times per week. Long term commitment to regular exercise is important, as the benefits of exercise on the bone are quickly lost once the person stops exercising.