Exercise and Healthy Bones

Life Horizons

Osteoporosis conjures up images of older men and women who easily break their bones. The bones lose mass. This leads to increased bone fragility and risk of broken bones, particularly of the hip, spine, wrist and shoulder. However, research is encouraging us to exercise so that we can prevent, maintain and perhaps restore our lost bone mass.

It is a scary statistic. Broken bones from osteoporosis are more common than heart attack, stroke and breast cancer combined. At least one in three women and one in five men will suffer from an osteoporotic fracture during their lifetime as they age over 50 years.

Photo by C. W. Clark Photo by C. W. Clark

The statistics related to broken hip are particularly disturbing. There were approximately 25,000 hip fractures in Canada in 1993. Twenty-eight per cent of women and 37% of men who suffer a hip fracture will die within the following year. Over 80% of…

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