Today, October 20th, is World Osteoporosis Day, a day dedicated to increasing awareness of the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis is a disease where your bones become brittle and more likely to break. It occurs when you don’t make enough bone to replace the bone that you are losing.
If you have osteoporosis, even simple stresses like bending over or coughing could cause you to fracture a bone. The most common osteoporosis-related fractures are in the hips, spine, and wrists.
An estimated nine million people in the United States have osteoporosis. Osteoporosis most commonly affects women, specifically Asian and white women after menopause. However, osteoporosis can also affect men.
Vitamin D and Osteoporosis
Calcium is necessary for making dense and strong bones. In order to absorb calcium, your body needs vitamin D. Stronger bones help prevent the onset of osteoporosis.
Research has also found that vitamin D improves muscle strength and balance. This means people who have sufficient levels of vitamin D may have less falls, and therefore, are less at risk for fracturing a bone.
What can I do?
World Osteoporosis Day began with a campaign launched by the United Kingdom’s National Osteoporosis Society on October 20th, 1996. It has since been organized by the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) and co-sponsored by the World Health Organization. They create a different theme each year, and this year’s theme is “Real men build their strength from within.”
One of the goals of World Osteoporosis Day is to provide the public with ways to build strong bones to help prevent osteoporosis.
Another goal of the World Osteoporosis Day is to raise awareness all over the world. Do you want to help raise awareness and get involved? Here’s how:
- Learn how to build strong bones. You can learn the five steps to healthier, stronger bones and educate your family and friends.
- Spread the word. Download and share the IOF’s library of osteoporosis resources with your friends, family and loved ones.
- Attend an event. There are events and activities happening all over the world to help spread the message of strong, healthy bones. See a map of all events and activities, here.
- Show off your support. Wear white to show off your support for World Osteoporosis Day this year and help spread awareness.
- Share your story if you’re a man above the age of 50 with osteoporosis
Check out our new infographic on osteoporosis below and share it with friends and family.
World Osteoporosis Day. IOF, 2014