Bone health in your 40s

As we age, bone health becomes more important.

Besides exercise, diet and lifestyle choices, bone health is of critical importance as we age. A house is only as strong as its foundation, and your bones are your body’s foundation. Here are some things to consider about your bones so you can live a strong and healthy life.

Bones in your 40s

By the time you are in your 40s you’ve reached peak bone density, and bone loss begins to exceed the rate of bone formation. While you can’t regain full bone mass, you can slow the decline.

Bone health is important for everyone, but people assigned female at birth have a few extra considerations to keep in mind, including the tendency to have smaller bones than people assigned male at birth. A decrease in the hormone estrogen can cause bone loss, which in turn can trigger osteoporosis (brittle bones). And people experiencing menopause should be extra careful as hormonal shifts and lifestyle choices can contribute to osteoporosis or other bone health issues.

The most at-risk group for osteoporosis is white people assigned female at birth. Other risk factors include smoking, a family history of bone conditions, and eating disorders, even in your younger years.

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Bone health tips

  1. Calcium and vitamin D – Ask your doctor to check your calcium and vitamin D levels. They may tell you to take a supplement or add different foods to your diet. Dietary vitamins are best, but sometimes more is needed to keep us healthy.
  2. Exercise – Weight-bearing exercises like walking and lifting weights are excellent for bone health. Aim for 30 minutes a day at least three to four times per week.
  3. Quit smoking – Stopping smoking is one of the best things you can do for your overall health, and it can slow the loss of bone mass.

Talk to your doctor

Talking with your regular doctor can help you stop age-related bone loss. They can prescribe medicines, order tests and help you make a plan to keep your bones in top shape for as long as possible. You can also see a specialist in orthopedics.

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