Thursday, December 10, 2009

One of the most common problems faced by women with advancing age is pain in the joints accompanied by fracture at the slightest of injuries or minor falls. This is due to the weakening of bones – a condition known as osteoporosis.

What is osteoporosis?
It is a kind of bone deformity common in the elderly. The symptoms include lower back pain and loss of bone mass as a result of which the bones become more susceptible to fractures. It occurs due to deficiency of calcium and vitamin D in the diet.

Osteoporosis and Women
After 45 years of age (=post menopause) women often complain of pain in the back and joints. The reason being a hormonal imbalance with advancing age. As a result the amount of calcium in the blood is reduced. To maintain a steady level of serum calcium the deficient amount is pulled out from the bones which weakens them.
Causes of Osteoporosis
*Bone tumour/cancer
*Disease of thyroid gland
*Hormonal imbalance
*Deficiency of Calcium (Ca helps in bone and teeth development)
*Deficiency of Vit.D (Plays important role in absorption of dietary Ca from intestine.Its absorption in bones)

*Exposure to sunlight as Vit.D is formed in the skin by UV rays. Hence the most inexpensive and practical source of getting Vit.D is exposure to sunlight for a few minutes daily.
*Consumption of milk and its products which are a good source of Ca.

Milky Options!
*A glass of milk should be consumed in the morning on rising or at bedtime before retiring.
*Milk can be used for preparation of sweet dishes like fruit custard or kheer.
*Milk porridge can be consumed for breakfast.
*Milk and cornflakes are yummy too.
*For a change flavoured milk or shakes can be tried too.
*Dough can be kneaded with milk.
*Try including curd in daily diet (plain, lassi, buttermilk).
*Curd can also be used for preparation of curries.

Other sources of Ca
*Green leafy veggies particularly amaranth, fenugreek and drumstick leaves.
*Roots like tapioca.
*Cereals like ragi are Ca rich.

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