Can Exercise and Dieting Help Osteoporosis?

Why Dieting and Exercise Go Hand in Hand

If you are dieting, you have to keep in mind that exercise is important too. The benefits of proper exercise during dieting don't end at accelerated weight loss and increased muscle mass. Ignoring exercise when dieting can actually be dangerous to your health.

A New Study Brings New Knowledge

A new study in the Archives of Internal Medicine shows that losing weight by exercise alone does not result in bone density loss but losing weight by dieting without exercising does result in bone density loss. This finding is particularly important for women younger than the age of 30. Most increases in bone density occur before a woman reaches the age of 30. Women are more at greater risk for osteoporosis and likewise are more affected by these findings. A man who loses weight through weight loss alone and doesn’t exercise is not going to suffer the same decrease in bone density as a woman will because men are generally at lower risk for osteoporosis then women are.

Give Up One Thing, Take On Another

If you are dieting or plan to diet as part of a New Year’s resolution, make sure you try to incorporate exercise into your daily life. You might try brisk walking three or four days a week for thirty minutes at a time. If you feel that you just can’t find time to squeeze in exercise, read our article on getting exercise at work. You will definitely find these tips helpful if you have a very busy schedule.

Reduce Calories, Not Calcium

Make sure that when you do diet, you get enough servings of calcium. The RDA, or Recommended Dietary Allowance, for calcium for females ages 11-24 is 1,200 mg and 800 mg for women over age 25. The calcium recommendation for men over the age of 19 is also 800 mg. As you can see, men have somewhat lower calcium needs because they have a lower risk for osteoporosis. Getting enough calcium while dieting is very important so pay attention to your intake of this nutrient.

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