Risk of Osteoporosis for Men—It’s Greater Than You Think
by Jay Bua on January 30, 2018
When we think of people who are at risk of osteoporosis, it’s not uncommon to think of mostly women and the elderly. The risk of osteoporosis for men is likely not a health concern most of us think much about. But it turns out we should—because men can get osteoporosis. Sure, the risk of osteoporosis for men is lower than that for women. But if men don’t get enough calcium and neglect the importance of maintaining bone health, they might well regret it in the long run. Here’s what you need to know about the risk of osteoporosis for men, and how you can learn what you need to know in order to avoid this health issue—and a hunchback.
You can delve even deeper into this topic by checking out: Risks of Osteoporosis in Men
Risk of Osteoporosis and Why Men Need to Worry
Men may be less at risk for osteoporosis than women are, but it’s still possible for them to get it. In fact, osteoporosis is often underdiagnosed in men. One reason for fewer diagnoses of osteoporosis is related to bone mass. Men have more bone mass than women to begin with, so their bone loss is often slower. It also means they’re less likely to see any symptoms as the osteoporosis progresses. In fact, many men may never worry a bit about bone health, but suddenly break a bone and wonder why.
Additionally, the screening standards for osteoporosis tend to be tailored toward women, not men. They measure the loss of bone mass, and the medical professional then compares the remaining bone mass to standards. But those standards are usually from women, not men, and women typically have less bone mass. So when a man with low bone mass is compared to women, he might be considered average, when in reality his bone mass is lower than it should be for a man.
The only way to solve this issue is to make sure men are aware of how to prevent osteoporosis. Fortunately, that can be done through a mix of diet and exercise.
Avoiding Risk of Osteoporosis for Men: Bone-Strengthening Exercises
The good news is men can boost bone health by incorporating the right exercises into a workout routine. That’s one of the things I’ve worked with my fitness training clients on for years, both women and men. Working out helps build strong, lean muscle mass for sure, but it also helps your bones and increases bone strength. Studies have shown that men who perform high-impact exercises and resistance training when they’re younger will have better bone density when they’re older. This is because certain exercises can improve bone mass in the hips and lumbar spine, and weight-bearing exercise forces the body to make new bone.
The key is to make sure you choose the right workout moves for best results. Some examples of recommended workouts for men who want to build bone strength include walking, running, hiking, and weightlifting. Spending a couple of hours a week on these exercises can men help maintain bone health and reduce the odds of osteoporosis.
Get more ideas on weight-bearing workouts to try: 10 Bone-Strengthening Exercises You Should Definitely Be Doing.
Calcium-Rich Foods to Eat
The other piece of the bone-strengthening puzzle is calcium. The amount of calcium you need as a man depends on age, but in general it’s around 1,000 mg per day. How can you get that on a regular basis? Start by incorporating dairy food into your diet if possible, with milk, cheese, and yogurt being some great options. If you’re dairy free, just focus on eating calcium-rich foods like oranges, sweet potatoes, figs, canned fish, leafy greens, and sesame seeds.
Check out what else you should eat to avoid osteoporosis: Calcium-Rich Foods You Should Eat Every Day
My interest in fitness and helping people build, keep, and train strong bodies is partly what led me to found FitFormula Wellness. That, combined with a passion for clean, pure ingredients is truly what gets me excited every single day. If you want to make sure you get the calcium you need on a daily basis, we created FitFormula’s Calcium + D supplement with just that in mind. Make a delicious smoothie or post-workout protein drink and add a packet of FitFormula to the mix. It’s an easy way to ensure you get the calcium you need, stave off that hunchback, and build strong bones and muscles along the way. You can buy it here and get 50% off your first order using code: FitFormula50.
Other Resources on this Topic:
National Osteoporosis Month: Resources for Health and Prevention
Osteoporosis in Men