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About 1.4 million Canadians suffer from osteoporosis, a condition in which bones become brittle and break easily. Nearly three-quarters of hip fractures are due to osteoporosis and one-fifth of all hip fractures result in death.

According to Osteoporosis Canada, one in four women and one in eight men over the age of 50 will develop this condition. Some scientists believe the numbers are even higher.

Protect Your Bones

Fortunately, there are steps you can take to safeguard the health of your bones. Make it a lifelong habit to get enough calcium and vitamin D in your diet. Calcium is the main building block of bones, and the body needs vitamin D in order to absorb calcium.

How much calcium do you need? Osteoporosis Canada recommends the following:

  • 4 to 8 years of age: 800 mg daily
  • 9 to 18 years of age: 1,300 mg daily
  • 19 to 50 years of age and any woman who is pregnant or breastfeeding: 1,000 mg daily
  • over 50 years of age: 1,500 mg daily

In addition, people between the ages of 19 and 50 should get 400 IU of vitamin D daily. Those over 50 should get 800 IU a day.

If you aren’t getting enough of these nutrients through your diet, you might want to consider a vitamin-mineral supplement.

If you already have osteoporosis, don’t despair. There are medications available that can help control the condition.

If you have concerns about the health of your bones, speak with your doctor or pharmacist. And if you need help selecting a supplement, your Sobeys pharmacist will be happy to assist you.

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