What causes poor bone well being?

x-ray of ankle and foot

Like all organs within the human physique, our bones are always present process remodelling.1 This course of is especially mediated by cells often known as osteoclasts and osteoblasts.1 Osteoclasts are answerable for the breakdown of bone whereas osteoblasts perform to construct bone by producing key elements, notably hydroxyapatite.1 As much as 70% of bone incorporates hydroxyapatite, which is a mineral made up of two main elements: calcium and phosphorous.1 Sadly, when the steadiness between bone degradation and formation is disrupted, this will result in bone diseases such as osteoporosis and improve the susceptibility of growing fractures.1 Why does this happen? What causes poor bone well being?

Calcium: A constructing block for bone

As a significant constituent of bone, calcium capabilities to strengthen the skeleton by selling progress and growth.1 Outdoors of its roles within the musculoskeletal system, additionally it is vital for the contraction of muscle groups and mobile signalling within the mind.1 As a result of all of those important capabilities, calcium ranges have to be carefully regulated.1 This process falls to 2 hormones produced within the mind, particularly parathyroid hormone and calcitonin.1 Parathyroid hormone is, because the identify suggests, made within the parathyroid gland and capabilities to extend calcium ranges by selling its launch from bone.1 Calcitonin is launched from the thyroid gland and works in opposition to parathyroid hormone because it decreases calcium ranges.1

Low calcium ranges and poor bone well being

The results of calcium on bone well being have been extensively explored. Analysis suggests {that a} deficiency in calcium is linked to a lower in bone mass.2 This happens as a result of parathyroid hormone begins to work extra time to boost calcium ranges.2 The truth is, it has been reported that youngsters (ages 3-15) who’ve had forearm fractures have decrease bone density scores than those that have by no means damaged a bone.3 The incidence of fractures in childhood can be correlated with a decreased consumption of calcium, suggesting that low calcium ranges may cause poor bone well being.

Equally, calcium is likely one of the elements linked to poor bone well being within the aged. For the typical individual, bone mass stays comparatively secure up till the age of fifty in males or till menopause hits in girls.2 In the course of the first 5 years after menopause, girls lose bone at an alarming price of 2-3%.2 This decreases to 1% after, which is about the identical for aged males.2 In these high-risk people, supplementing weight-reduction plan with calcium has been proven to decelerate the lack of bone mass.2 Along with dairy merchandise, meals which can be excessive in calcium embrace bony fish, legumes, and a few sorts of nuts.2

Low vitamin D ranges and poor bone well being

One of many important capabilities of vitamin D is to manage the degrees of calcium, thereby making it an vital issue for the upkeep of wholesome bones.4 Vitamin D is required within the physique to soak up calcium from the intestine in order that it could actually enter the bloodstream.4 Analysis demonstrates {that a} vitamin D deficiency is related to low bone density and an elevated threat of affected by fractures.4

These outcomes may be reversed with vitamin D supplementation.4 Together with calcium, vitamin D has been proven to considerably lower the danger of growing hip fractures in aged girls (ages 69-106).5

Low bodily exercise ranges and poor bone well being

Apart from sustaining wholesome ranges of calcium and vitamin D within the physique, common train can have advantages for bone well being.6 In menopausal girls (ages 48-60), partaking in bodily exercise 4 occasions/week was concluded to offset the lack of bone related to growing old.7 Resistance coaching is assumed to exert probably the most advantages for bone well being because of the mechanical stress it locations on the skeleton, which stimulates bone density, mass, and energy.6,7

What are you able to do to maintain your bones wholesome?

Whereas many elements can affect bone well being, supplementing weight-reduction plan with calcium and vitamin D might assist preserve bones wholesome. Nevertheless, take into account that calcium and vitamin D must be consumed carefully and relying in your particular wants – communicate along with your healthcare supplier for steerage on weight-reduction plan and dietary supplements. A scarcity of train can be what may cause poor bone well being, thus making a health plan targeted on resistance coaching might assist strengthen bones and enhance general wellbeing. Please seek the advice of your healthcare supplier to see how one can preserve your bones wholesome.


1.        Vannucci L, Fossi C, Quattrini S, et al. Calcium Consumption in bone well being: A concentrate on calcium-rich mineral waters. Vitamins. 2018;10(12):1-12. doi:10.3390/nu10121930

2.        Sanders KM, Nowson CA, Kotowicz MA, Kathryn B, Devine A, Reid IR. Calcium and bone well being: Place assertion for the Australian and New Zealand Bone and Mineral Society, Osteoporosis Australia and the Endocrine Society of Australia. Med J Aust. 2009;190(6):316-320.

3.        Goulding A, Cannan R, Williams SM, Gold EJ, Taylor RW, Lewis-Barned NJ. Bone mineral density in women with forearm fractures. J Bone Miner Res. 1998;13(1):143-148. doi:10.1359/jbmr.1998.13.1.143

4.        Lips P, Van Schoor NM. The impact of vitamin D on bone and osteoporosis. Finest Pract Res Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2011;25(4):585-591. doi:10.1016/j.beem.2011.05.002

5.        Chapuy MC, Arlot ME, Duboeuf F, et al. Vitamin D3 and calcium to forestall hip fractures in aged girls. 1992;326.

6.        Hong AR, Kim SW. Results of resistance train on bone well being. Endocrinol Metab. 2018;33(4):435-444. doi:10.3803/EnM.2018.33.4.435

7.        Kemmler W, Lauber D, Weineck J, Hensen J, Kalender W, Engelke Okay. Advantages of two years of intense train on bone density, bodily health, and blood lipids in early postmenopausal osteopenic girls: Outcomes of the Erlangen Health Osteoporosis Prevention Examine (EFOPS). Arch Intern Med. 2004;164(10):1084-1091. doi:10.1001/archinte.164.10.1084

Photograph by Tima Miroshnichenko from Pexels


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