An Once of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”- Benjamin Franklin
Did you know that May is National Osteoporosis Month?
We can’t stop all health-related illnesses and accidents, but we can make every effort to help employees prevent the preventable. It’s amazing how we take the necessary steps to ensure our kids (and our cars) get their annual checkups, but we often fail to do the same for ourselves. Annual checkups, along with gender and age-specific checkups, are key components of a preventative maintenance program.
One example of a preventable disease that may be discovered during an annual checkup is Osteoporosis. However, with exercise, medical awareness and a healthy diet, it can be preventable.
One of the first things you can do to reduce Osteoporosis risk in your employees is to educate them on medication awareness. They should check their medicine cabinet and read prescription information to see if any of the drugs they’re prescribed cause bone loss. A good doctor will always weigh the benefits of a medication against the side effects. For women and the elderly especially, any medication which increases bone loss should likely be switched for an alternative drug because these population groups are at a higher risk for the disease. For example, Invokana is a popular diabetes drug facing thousands of lawsuits for the high risk of bone fractures when taking it.
Most people associate a poor diet with heart disease or a sedentary lifestyle with diabetes, but these lifestyle factors also affect bone health. Since bones are living, growing tissues, they need to be cared for the same as any other vital organ. Since May is National Osteoporosis Month, now’s a great time to spread awareness by implementing preventative exercises into your organization’s wellness program.
Because exercise strengthens muscles and improves overall bone health, it can be a great determent to Osteoporosis. Experts recommend incorporating weight-bearing and muscle-strengthening exercises into a weekly routine for optimal bone health. Here’s a few tips from Consumer Safety:
- Weight-bearing exercises help build bones and keep them strong. Examples of high impact weight-bearing exercises include aerobics and jogging. If you prefer low impact weight-bearing exercises or already have Osteoporosis, try speed walking or using an elliptical.
- Muscle-strengthening exercises will strengthen all major muscle groups. Particularly, resistance training helps maintain bone density. Try using free weights, resistance bands, or your own body weight to strengthen your muscles and bones.
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