“Sports during adolescence may reduce risk of osteoporosis”

Osteoporosis, also known as bone loss, is a condition commonly encountered in both men and women as they age. Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Specialist Prof. Dr. Meral Kozakçıoğlu explained that the condition occurs more frequently in women due to the gradual resorption of bones that begins before menopause, typically between the ages of 40 and 45. In men, the condition occurs at a later age due to the higher bone density in men.

Calcium deficiency is a basic cause of osteoporosis. Other factors that contribute to bone loss include the deficiency of osteoblasts, vitamin D, hormonal imbalances, and decreased physical activity. If left untreated, osteoporosis can lead to fragile bones that are vulnerable to fractures, particularly in the back and hip joints.

According to Prof. Dr. Kozakçıoğlu, developing strong muscle mass can help prevent osteoporosis. Women are most at risk for osteoporosis-related bone fractures due to the rapid loss of bone mass, and as a result, strong back and leg muscles are crucial in preventing bone loss.

Apart from pain, postural disorder is also a symptom of osteoporosis. Prof. Dr. Kozakçıoğlu warns that osteoporosis can cause hunching and shortening in stature. The ribs also pass inward with this posture disorder, narrowing the intervals and negatively impacting the heart and lungs in the future.

A balanced diet with adequate calcium intake can help prevent osteoporosis. Prof. Dr. Kozakçıoğlu suggests consuming 1000-1200 mg of calcium daily, which can be obtained from a glass of milk or a bowl of yogurt. Green vegetables can also be an excellent source of calcium.

Prof. Dr. Kozakçıoğlu emphasizes the importance of preventing osteoporosis starting in adolescence. Children can be directed towards sports like basketball, volleyball, and running. These sports can strengthen bones and help prepare them for the future. Planning activities and nutrition with the family and school can make a significant difference in preventing bone loss in later years.


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