While most of you will have heard about what osteoporosis is, you may not have heard of osteopenia. The term was only recently introduced (around the 1990s) but now it’s everywhere and used as a term to describe a low bone density – but not low enough to be described at osteoporosis. Someone who has osteopenia will be at risk of developing osteoporosis, but won’t necessarily do so, and may benefit from some natural treatments to help to treat the condition.
How does osteopenia happen?
By the time you turn 30, your bones are going to be as strong and dense as they’re ever going to be. After you hit 30, your bones begin to naturally thin with age. Women are going to be more likely than men to develop osteoporosis because their bones are naturally thinner to begin with, and hormonal changes also help to accelerate the presence of osteopenia. Depending on bone density and other kinds of factors such as previous bone damage from fractures, poor health and poor levels of activity, women with osteopenia may actually be at the same level of risk of bone fractures as other women with osteoporosis. To combat this, you can follow some healthy habits, perhaps seek out the best calcium supplement for osteopenia, and engage some natural treatments to mitigate your risk.
Natural treatment one: Healthy Lifestyle
The best kind of treatment for osteopenia is to follow a healthy lifestyle. If you have plenty of good wholesome food, you’ll find that you’re at less of a risk of developing osteopenia.
Natural treatment two: Diet
In order to keep your bones strong and healthy, you need to ensure that your diet is high in calcium and also in vitamin D. You can get plenty of calcium from foods like:
- Dairy products (things like cheese, ice cream, lowfat milk and yoghurt are great options)
- Green vegetables like spinach, collard greens, broccoli and kale
- Sardines and salmon (with the bones in)
- Tofu and other soy products
Vitamin D is actually made by the body when your skin is exposed to the sunlight. If you spend even ten to fifteen minutes outdoors in the sun a day, you’ll find that you have enough vitamin D. A few foods are going to naturally contain vitamin D, and others (like breads, milks and other related things) are fortified with vitamin D. Get your vitamin D from things like:
- Fish – salmon is great again here
- Beef livers
- Fish liver oils
- Egg yolks
Natural treatment three: Moderate your lifestyle
If you’re a smoker, it’s high time you quit smoking! The presence of smoking in the body is terrible for your bones, and if you quit smoking, you’ll find that there’s a positive chance of building stronger bones. The same goes for alcohol – if you drink too much, it’s bad for your body. In addition to this, you need to ensure that you cut back on salt and caffeine as they can contribute to calcium and bone loss. To improve your bone health, switch to things like non-caffeinated drinks and avoid soft drinks entirely.
Natural treatment four: Vitamin D & calcium supplements
There are a range of natural supplements that are great for your bones and health. The main ones are calcium and vitamin D, and you can speak to your doctor about these for your specific health concerns.
Natural treatment five: Other supplements
There has been some research into other supplements that can help to potentially strengthen your bones. These include:
- Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA)
- Folic acid, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12
- Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) — the two omega-3 fatty acids found in fish
I hope that these natural treatments have been helpful for your bone health and that you manage to work out the treatment that is best for you.