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World Osteoporosis Day: Workout for strong bones

Published Oct 20, 2014, 8:07 am IST
Updated Mar 30, 2019, 8:10 pm IST
Docs warn against myth that exercise causes injury

Hyderabad: Cycling as a low intensity exercise is good as it does not put major pressure on the body and can be performed by even elderly people without major side-effects, said experts for World Osteoporosis Day on October 20.

With not less than 20 crore of Indians suffering from osteoporosis, a situation where the bones become brittle and are prone to fractures, there is strong need to keep the bones healthy with proper nutrition and also exercise.


The ratio of male to woman is as high as 1:3 as women have poor nutritional intake and also suffer from physiological burden of menopause.

Dr Mithin Aachi, joint replacement and arthroscopy surgeon at Apollo Hospitals said, “The reason that major stress is being laid on exercise is because it help increase the bone and muscle nutrition.

Without exercise, the muscles atrophy and bones become weak. But many patients cannot undergo rigorous exercise. Hence the middle path of cycling is being advocated to them which will help in maintaining good nutrition of muscles and also help to improve mobility of the joint.”

There is a lot of misconception among people who believe that those who exercise increase the risk of injury but the truth is quite the opposite.

Dr Shashi Kanth, senior orthopedic surgeon at Care Hospitals said, “The National Osteoporosis Foundation suggests that the best exercise for building and maintaining bone density are weight bearing exercise such as walking and muscle strengthening exercise which helps to balance the body and also posture exercises which will help to strengthen the core abdominal muscles of the body.”

A regular, properly desi-gned exercise program may actually help to prevent falls and also fall related fractures which are often due to disability and one of the prime reasons for premature death.

Strengthening bones and muscles impr-oves balance, co-ordination and flexibility among older adults suffering from osteoporosis.

Meanwhile Bone mass depends on Dietary Choices

High prevalence of vitamin D deficiency is a major contributor to low bone mass. While a calcium rich diet like milk and leafy vegetables is advocated, absor-ption of calcium varies in different ages.

Absorption of calcium is also linked to vitamin D levels in the body. When the levels are low, calcium absor-ption is affected as vitamin D helps to mobilise the calcium in the body.

For that reason it is important to get some exposure in the sun. Dr M. Hari Sharma, senior consultant orthopedic surgeon said, “Humans absorb 30 per cent of calcium from foods.

Skin, when exposed to sunlight with sufficient intensity, not only helps in improving vitamin D levels but also works towards improving calcium absorption.”

At the same time, too much spicy and sour food does not help for good absorption of calcium. Milk and milk products like curd, paneer, green leafy vegetables, soya, walnuts, peanuts, almonds are found to contain potassium that protect against the loss of calcium through urine.

Nutritionist Madhurima explained, “Salt is a major culprit in depriving the body of calcium. The more salt you eat, the more calcium is  removed from the body through urine.”

Location: Telangana