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Bone Health During Menopause

Podcast Episode 7 transcript.

Listen on: Apple, Spotify, Website

Today, I’m going to talk about Bone Health during Menopause.

As our bodies undergo significant changes during menopause, it's important to understand how this impacts bone health and what insights we can gain to support bone resilience.

During menopause, hormonal shifts, particularly the decline in estrogen levels, can lead to accelerated bone loss. Estrogen plays a pivotal role in maintaining bone density, and its reduction can result in an increased risk of fractures and osteoporosis.

Bone strength is a combination of bone density and bone quality. Although both men and women experience bone loss (called osteoporosis) as a natural part of ageing, bone loss progresses rapidly in postmenopausal women as oestrogen levels decline. Osteoporosis increases the risk of broken bones (fractures)

Women have a higher fracture risk if they Are over 65 years or are under 65 years old with certain risk factors like

  • Having a History of falls 

  • Family history of hip fracture

  • A Low BMI, Smoking or drinking more than 14 alcohol units/week

Supporting our bones during menopause needs to be a holistic approach. 

You can ask your doctors for Calcium and vitamin D blood tests. If they are found to be very low, you will be offered further tests to check your bone density and then prescribed medication to help.

Medications like alendronic acid or risedronate sodium are usually first-line treatments, as they were found to be more effective than just HRT. These medications can be taken with HRT.

However, nutrition is vital. Incorporate dairy, leafy greens, and seeds. Seeds like chia, sesame, and poppy seeds are very high in Calcium. I include them in my smoothies and sprinkle them on my yoghurt. It is important to be mindful of eating high-calcium foods if you have a dairy-free diet. 

Exercise is another crucial component. Weight-bearing exercises like walking, jogging, or resistance training help maintain bone density. It's not just about cardio; strength training is equally important. So, whether it's a brisk walk in the park or hitting the gym, find what works for you and make it a part of your routine.

We all know stress is not good for us, but we may not realise it can impact our bone health. When stressed, our bodies release a stress hormone called “cortisol,” which causes our bones and teeth to lose calcium. If stress becomes chronic, even a high-calcium diet will not be quick enough to replace the lost calcium, and the bones will weaken.

Many people consider feeling stressed a normal part of life, but it is good to become aware of its adverse effects on the body. You might consider taking up one of your favourite pastimes, going for a walk with friends, or including relaxation techniques, mindfulness, and self-care in your routine—anything to help clear your mind and put you at ease.

Bone resilience during menopause requires a holistic approach. Everything plays a role, from nutrition to exercise, considering HRT options, and taking care of your mental health. Remember, it's never too early to start thinking about bone health; your choices today can significantly impact your future.

I hope you enjoyed this episode of bone health during menopause. As always, consult with your healthcare provider for personalised advice.


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