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Long-live your spine

Lifelong Prevention Tips for Women with osteoporosis

Our bones provide us with a sturdy frame, keep us upright, and enable our movements. They protect our vital nerves and organs and even produce new blood cells. Any circumstance that compromises our skeleton, also compromises all of those other functions. Osteoporosis is a degenerative condition that can really put a strain on our bones.

When Osteoporosis occurs, bones become porous, resembling sponges. They become weak, brittle, and fracture easily. We often hear about older adults falling and breaking a hip. This often occurs as a result of the damaging effects of osteoporosis.

It affect 3 million people in the UK and is more prevalent in women than men.

There are a number of reasons why women are more affected by Osteoporosis than men.

Osteoporosis is mainly thought to affect women over the age of 60. The main reason for this has been linked to hormones. Estrogen is an important hormone that is responsible for maintaining healthy bone mass. When women hit menopause, the estrogen in their bodies plummets, threatening the health of their bones. Hormones are not the only factor that may lead to bone loss, other factors such as smoking, alcohol, eating disorders, spinal conditions and more - see Osteoporosis UK for more information.

Our bones don’t magically become porous and brittle overnight. They go through years of gradual weakening, which is amplified by plunging estrogen levels during menopause.

Important vitamins and minerals for bone health

Calcium is a mineral that helps with bone growth and development of the skeleton. Therefore, a calcium deficiency is a risk factor for both osteomalacia and osteoporosis in adults. Dietary sources of calcium include; broccoli, cabbage, okra, nuts, milk and dairy products, fortified white flour (bread), fortified breakfast cereals, fish where you eat the bones and tofu. Spinach is another food which contains calcium, however, is not a good source as it also contains oxalic acid which decreases the bioavailability of calcium.

Vitamin D is involved in the absorption of calcium and phosphate and essential for bone growth. Similar to calcium, a vitamin D deficiency increases the risk for both osteoporosis and osteomalacia in adults. Vitamin D can be synthesised by the skin when the body is exposed to sunlight. This means that in winter months, it is much harder to synthesise vitamin D. Although vitamin D can be obtained from the diet, it is difficult to reach the recommended amount of 10 μg/day from food alone, so it is recommended that adults take a vitamin D supplement in winter months to prevent deficiency. Dietary sources of vitamin D include; oily fish, dairy products, egg yolk and red meat.

Caffeine and bone health

High caffeine consumption has been associated with low bone mineral density in some epidemiological studies through the association between decreased calcium absorption. However, there are many other factors that can affect bone health, and several studies have found no association between caffeine intake and reduced bone mineral density. In addition, current evidence suggests that if calcium requirements are met, the effect of moderate caffeine intake is unlikely to affect calcium levels and therefore bone mineral density.

The benefits of Pilates:

Pilates is beneficial for helping to maintain bone strength, improving muscle strength and balance, as well as helping with pain and posture. But there are some exercises where you may ‘over flex’ your spine if you push yourself to the limits. It is important you have highlighted your osteoporosis condition to your Pilates instructor as they can teach you modified exercises. The main benefits of Pilates is to strengthen the spine.

Here are 5 safe Pilates exercises that we would recommend:

Pelvic Tilts

Shoulder Bridge

Scissors L1

Hip Twist

Cat & Camel

Keep your spine healthy with safe and effective exercise along with supplements stated above. If you have any questions in relation to a diagnosis of osteoporosis or osteopenia you must consult your GP.

Any questions in relation to Pilates based exercises please get in touch with us:


F & H


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