Tags: osteoporosis | men | exercise

How to Prevent Osteoporosis – in Men

Tuesday, 08 May 2012 11:59 AM

Osteoporosis doesn’t just strike women. Men are also at risk of the bone-thinning disease. But new research shows young men who regularly play basketball or other load-bearing sports increase bone mass and are less likely to develop osteoporosis later in life.
The study, published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, found men in their early 20s who engage in such sports for at least four hours a week significantly reduce their odds of developing the condition. Osteoporosis is often thought of as a woman’s disease, but it also causes sometimes-debilitating fractures in about one in five men in old age.
The study, led by researchers at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden, involved 833 men who were tracked over a five-year period. Researchers measured the participants' bone mass and monitored their exercise habits. They found men with a high level of load-bearing exercise built more bone mass than those who remained sedentary.
"Men who increased their load-bearing activity from age 19 to 24 not only developed more bone, but also had larger bones compared to men who were sedentary during the same period," said lead researcher Dr. Mattias Lorentzon.
Bigger bones with more mass are thought to offer protection against osteoporosis, in which bones become porous and weak over time and fracture by age 50 or later.
"Osteoporosis actually seems to get its start by age 25 when bones start to lose tissue. So this study sends an important message to young men," Lorentzon said. "The more you move, the more bone you build."
Researchers said basketball and volleyball build the most bone mass, followed by soccer and tennis.
Osteoporosis affects more than 200 million people worldwide. It is more common in women, but men also develop it — usually after age 65.

© HealthDay

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Load-bearing exercises help men reduce the risk of developing the bone-thinning disease that most often strikes women.
Tuesday, 08 May 2012 11:59 AM
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