Header for Osteoporosis Digest

24 Osteoporosis Risk Factors: Some Will Likely Surprise You

Small-boned, lightweight women have greater osteoporosis risk than most large-boned men. But family history, lifestyle, nutrition, physical activity and medication can also affect our risk.

If you are a small-boned, lightweight person, then your risk of developing osteoporosis is particularly high.

Several studies suggest that women weighing less than 130 pounds and men weighing less than 150 pounds are especially susceptible to developing osteoporosis.

In fact, a risk factor for osteoporosis is that you weigh the same as you did when you were 25. But weight and bone-size are not the only risk factors.

6 Areas With 24 Elements Of Osteoporosis Risk

In the following five areas, there are an additional 20 elements that increase the risk of fracture from osteoporosis.

1. Heredity

You are at increased risk if...

  • You have a family history of osteoporosis.
  • You are thin, small boned.
  • You are female.
  • You are Caucasian or Asian.

2. Lifestyle

You are at increased risk if...

2. Nutrition

You are at increased risk if...

  • You eat excessive meat and salty foods or drink too much soda.
  • You do not consume milk and dairy products.
  • You do not consume other food sources of calcium (such as broccoli, kale or salmon with bones).
  • You have lower stomach acidity, which may inhibit calcium absorption.
  • You drink more than 3 cups of caffeinated beverages such as coffee/tea/soda per day.
  • You suffer from an eating disorder such as anorexia.

4. Physical Activity

You are at increased risk if...

  • You do not do weight-bearing exercise (walking, tai-chi, dancing, weight lifting) for at least 30 minutes daily.
  • You are physically inactive for prolonged periods of time.

5. Health

You are at increased risk if...

  • You have a vitamin D deficiency (70% of North Americans).
  • You had your ovaries removed.
  • You reached menopause before age 45.
  • You suffered from amenorrhea (loss of menstrual periods for at least six months).
  • You regularly take steroids, thyroid medication or other risky drugs.
  • You have low stomach acid (common after age 50).
  • You have excess parathyroid hormones.
  • You have Paget's Disease.

6. Physical Signs

You are at increased risk if...

  • You have had a loss in overall height.
  • Your upper back has curved forward.
  • You had a fracture of wrist, spine or hip.

Tracking changes in your osteoporosis T-scores will help you to assess the speed of your bone loss and whether an osteoporosis treatment program of inexpensive vitamins is needed to protect your bones.