Bones play a significant role in the body. Not only do they provide support and are essential in movement, but they also help in the production of blood cells and provide storage for both fat and minerals.
Bone tissue serves various important metabolic processes. The bone matrix serves as a reservoir for a variety of minerals, particularly calcium and phosphorus. These minerals, which are absorbed into bone tissue, can also be released back into the bloodstream to maintain the amounts required for physiological functions. And it is all of these important functions that make it essential to take care of the 206 bones you have.
Osteoporosis refers to a bone disease which essentially results in “bones with holes.” It takes place when bone mineral density and bone mass decline, or when the bone structure changes. This results in a loss of bone strength, eventually increasing the risk of fractures.
Some people may consider it as a “silent” condition for it may take some time to realize bones are weakening — if it is noticed at all. It is typically a fracture that draws attention to these changes in bone structure. This can happen in any bone, but it is most evident in the following parts of the body:
- Vertebrae of the spine
Every year, osteoporosis causes more than two million fractures, and the number continues to increase. Women are more likely to have this condition as one of the causes of osteoporosis is hormonal changes.
Causes of Osteoporosis
There are a wide variety of risk factors and causes of osteoporosis. These include “unchangeable” factors such as sex and age, and factors that we can change, like hormones, lifestyle, diet and other medical conditions.