Irving , TX, Oct. 2, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- (http://www.myprgenie.com) -- About 57 million Americans -- both women and men -- have low bone density or osteoporosis, the National Osteoporosis Foundation reports. Among Americans over 50, approximately 50% of women and 25% of men will break a bone due to osteoporosis.
The spine specialists at Minimally Invasive SpineCARE(R) say people can prevent osteoporosis or minimize their chances for osteoporosis-related fractures by adopting healthy habits now.
Dr. Erica Whitlock, a chiropractor at Minimally Invasive SpineCARE's SpineCARE Therapy, says exercise fights osteoporosis and improves general health. The sooner a person starts weight-bearing exercises, the better she or he can form bone mass; osteoporosis is a disease characterized by the loss of too much bone, the body making too little bone -- or both.
"If someone already has osteoporosis, it's still good to start with a light, weight-bearing exercise program because any type of weight-bearing exercise is going to help rebuild that bone. But be careful not to overdo it," she cautions.
Good weight-bearing exercises to strengthen lower extremities include activities such as walking, jogging and skiing. To strengthen upper extremities, Whitlock suggests lifting weights. If patients don't already have a routine in place she recommends bicep curls with one-pound weights. Progress to five-pound weights as time goes on. However, Whitlock advises patients to check with their health care provider before starting any exercise routine.
"Also, ask a family member or a friend to join you -- this will help you commit to it on a regular basis and makes working out more fun," she adds.
Furthermore, Whitlock recommends that people avoid alcohol and smoking because they both decrease calcium absorption in the bone. She says that proper nutrition is essential.
"You want to make sure you're taking in lots of calcium, especially as you get older, because calcium absorption usually decreases with age," Whitlock says. "Typically, I recommend getting calcium just from whole food sources like dairy products and dark green, leafy vegetables. You don't have to take a supplement unless you have a very low calcium level. Also, get plenty of vitamin D. Calcium can't be absorbed in the bone without vitamin D."
Foods that are high in vitamin D include fatty fishes, liver, milk and egg yolks.
Whitlock also warns that gastrointestinal surgery can lead to low calcium levels and contribute to osteoporosis.
Minimally Invasive SpineCARE is a nationally acclaimed, fully comprehensive spine center for surgical and non-surgical treatments headquartered in Irving, Texas. For more information, visit www.SpineCareDFW.com.
CONTACT: Krista Simmons, email@example.com, 817-492-9143
Source: Minimally Invasive SpineCARE