Worldwide, the incidence of spine fracture increases with age in both sexes. Most studies indicate that the prevalence of spine fracture in men is similar to or even greater than that seen in women, aged 50 to 60 years.

  • One in three people with hip fractures suffers considerable loss of function and becomes dependent on others.
  • One in five people with osteoporotic hip fractures dies within a year.

Common symptoms of osteoporosis

  • Back pain
  • Fracture of the spine, wrist, hip or other bones
  • Loss of height over time, with a stooped posture

Prevention of osteoporosis

  1. Brisk walk, climb the stairs, do tai chi and other weight-bearing exercises at least three times a week.
  2. Don’t smoke or drink alcohol excessively.
  3. Eat a balanced diet with adequate calcium and vitamin D.

Treatment of osteoporosis

  • Osteoporosis cannot be cured.
  • A bone mineral density test to measure the density of calcium and other minerals in different bones of the body is the best way of diagnosing osteoporosis.
  • Medication can stop the depletion of bone mineral from bones and stimulate bone formation.
  • Precautions should be taken when engaging in moderately intense to vigorous exercises

Dietary tips for osteoporosis

Calcium is better absorbed when taken in small amounts throughout the day. An adult under 50 needs 1,000 mg of calcium and 400-800 IU of vitamin D daily. Adults over 50 need over 1,200 mg of calcium and 800-1000 IU of vitamin D daily.

Eat foods rich in Vitamin D such as salmon and eggs as vitamin D aids calcium absorption.

Add skimmed milk powder or low fat milk to soups, smoothies, milkshakes and sauces.

Choose breads, cereal and juices that are fortified with calcium.

Osteoporosis in Singapore: Fast Facts

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