If you’re considering switching to a vegetarian lifestyle, you should be aware of how this change can affect your overall health, especially if you’re currently elderly or at risk of osteoporosis and other skeletal issues.
Recent research has shown that there may be an increased risk of hip fractures among vegetarians compared to meat-eaters, though experts are divided on the potential causes of this discrepancy. This article discusses the risks and potential causes of hip fractures among vegetarians, as well as some ways to reduce your risk through diet and other lifestyle changes.
A new study finds that vegetarians are at greater risk of hip fractures than their non-vegetarian counterparts, according to researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine in California and the Jikei University School of Medicine in Tokyo, Japan.
Although the correlation between vegetarianism and hip fractures has been known, scientists had yet to figure out why this was the case until now. The study was published online by the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research in August 2010.
Introducing hip fractures:
A hip fracture is a break that occurs in the upper part of the femur, or thighbone. This type of injury can cause serious pain and disability, and often requires surgery to repair. One way to prevent these injuries is by taking calcium supplements and exercising regularly.
However, studies have shown that vegetarians are at an increased risk for developing this condition due to a lack of vitamin B12 which can lead to osteoporosis. The nutrient can be found in many animal products such as meat, poultry, eggs, and milk.
The most common reasons for vegetarianism include ethical reasons or religious beliefs where people abstain from eating meat because they think it goes against their beliefs.
A new study has found that the risk of hip fractures is higher in vegetarians than in meat-eaters. The study, which was conducted by researchers at the University of Oxford, looked at data from over 50,000 people in the UK and found that vegetarians had a higher risk of hip fractures than meat-eaters.
Researchers point to the lack of protein in vegetarian diets as a possible cause for this increased risk.
In order to reduce their risk of developing osteoporosis, these individuals should include more protein in their diet or exercise more regularly.
It’s really important for elderly vegetarians to get enough calcium and vitamin D in their diet, says Dr. Carrie Ruxton, spokesperson for the British Dietetic Association. These two nutrients are essential to bone health. Calcium strengthens bones while vitamin D helps them absorb calcium properly.
She recommends including sources of both foods in your diet like yogurt, milk, broccoli, or other leafy green vegetables. You can also take supplements if you’re unable to meet your daily needs through food alone.
One large egg contains about 25% of your recommended intake of vitamin D so you could try adding eggs to your diet if it meets your dietary needs. Exercise is also key — a recent study found that regular physical activity improves bone density, even in those who have been sedentary for years.
When choosing an exercise program, make sure it includes weight bearing exercises like walking and strength training exercises such as squats.
What are the risk factors?
A recent study has found that vegetarians have a higher risk of hip fractures than meat-eaters. The study’s authors say that this may be due to the fact that vegetarians tend to have lower levels of vitamin D and calcium, which are important for bone health.
They also suggest that vegetarians may be more likely to have fragile bones because they tend to be thinner and have less muscle mass. Additionally, vegetarian diets don’t provide enough protein for building and maintaining healthy bones.
Eating a well-balanced diet is the best way to prevent osteoporosis from occurring in the first place. Adding milk, yogurt, cheese, or other dairy products can help improve bone health in both meat-eaters and vegetarians alike.
Calcium supplements may also be necessary if you’re not getting enough through your diet. Finally, regular exercise (especially weight bearing exercises) can reduce your chances of developing osteoporosis by improving your body’s ability to build new bone tissue when needed.
Is there any preventative measure?
As we age, our bones naturally become more brittle and are more susceptible to fractures. For vegetarians, this risk may be even higher due to lower levels of vitamin D and calcium. While there is no sure way to prevent a hip fracture, there are some things you can do to reduce your risk.
First, make sure you’re getting enough vitamin D and calcium in your diet. You can get vitamin D from exposure to sunlight or from certain foods like eggs, fish, and fortified milk. There are also many dairy alternatives that provide calcium such as soy milk, rice milk, and almond milk.
Talk with your doctor about the best options for you based on your lifestyle and needs.
What is the treatment process?
If you’re a vegetarian, you may be at an increased risk for hip fractures. Here’s what you need to know about the risks and the treatment process.
- Did you know that meat is often consumed with other foods? For example, beef is often served with potatoes or pasta dishes.
- The variety of different foods in your diet can help lower your risk of a fracture from calcium deficiency.
- Good sources of calcium include milk, yogurt, cheese, kale and broccoli.
- However, just because your diet doesn’t include dairy products doesn’t mean that it’s not still high in calcium! Other sources include leafy greens like spinach, tofu, beans and almonds.
- Make sure to talk to your doctor before starting any new dietary changes, especially if you have other health concerns or are pregnant.
- A lot of people who eat meat also take supplements (like bone-building vitamin D). Just make sure that whatever supplement you decide on has enough calcium as well as vitamin D.
Bone building nutrients are important both for those who consume meat regularly and those who don’t. Remember to discuss this with your doctor first.
What happens if you don’t get treatment?
If you have a hip fracture, it’s important to get treatment right away. If you don’t, your risk of complications increases. For example, you may develop a blood clot or pneumonia. You may also lose range of motion in your hip joint
In severe cases, untreated hip fractures can lead to death. The best way to avoid these problems is to make sure you see a doctor as soon as possible if you think you might have a hip fracture. These four steps will help protect your hip from fracturing again:
- use a cane or walker;
- do exercises that strengthen the muscles around the hip;
- stretch your quadriceps muscle (the muscle on the front of the thigh);
- take medication for arthritis pain.
A few other things to keep in mind — take care when getting up from a chair or bed, avoid bending at the waist when reaching for something on the floor, and try not to carry anything heavier than five pounds with one hand. It’s important to be aware of how often you’re using your joints because joint overuse can lead to injury.
How long does it take to recover from hip fracture surgery?
According to the National Institutes of Health, it can take anywhere from four to six weeks for patients to recover from hip fracture surgery. This time frame may be lengthened if there are complications or if the patient is older. It is important for patients to follow their doctor’s orders during recovery in order to heal properly.
For example, patients may need to avoid putting weight on their leg or may need physical therapy. Hip fractures require intense treatment to make sure that the patient heals correctly and is able to function after healing.
These treatments vary by person but often include pain medication, strict bed rest, following up with an orthopedic surgeon after healing has begun, as well as physical therapy. It is recommended that people should not engage in any activity that could result in fracturing their hip again until they have fully healed from their first fracture — including high-impact exercise like running or jumping.
Are there any alternative treatments that I can use?
If you’re considering a vegetarian lifestyle, or are already one, it’s important to be aware of the risks associated with it. One such risk is the increased likelihood of hip fractures. While there are alternative treatments available, such as medication and supplements, these may not be enough to offset the risk.
It’s important to speak with your doctor about your lifestyle choices and make sure you’re taking steps to protect your health. There are many different types of vegetarians — some eat eggs, others will only eat fish. Find out what type you are, and work with your doctor to maintain a healthy diet.
As a vegetarian, it’s important to be aware of the increased risk of hip fractures. However, this doesn’t mean that you should avoid a vegetarian lifestyle altogether. There are many health benefits to vegetarianism, so speak with your doctor about ways to reduce your risk. They may recommend supplementing with vitamin D and calcium, as well as exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy weight.
If you’re not able to maintain these things, then it might be best for you to eat meat in moderation or stop being a vegetarian all together. It is also worth noting that vegetarians tend to have higher iron levels than their non-vegetarian counterparts which could account for some of the reduced risk of heart disease.