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Osteoporosis is a disease that we usually associate with the elderly, none of us connects it with children. Meanwhile, more and more of them suffer from early-stage osteoporosis. The causes of osteoporosis in a young person are usually the same: poor diet and malnutrition. What are the symptoms of osteoporosis in children? What is the treatment?

Osteoporosis in childrenis a progressive decrease in bone densityof bones . A he althy bone resembles a dense artificial sponge. When attacked by osteoporosis, it looks like a natural sponge - with large holes, very openwork. Unfortunately, the more openwork it is, the less durable our skeleton is. It is easy for fractures then, even with the slightest injury. And it's very easy for young people who are physically active.

Osteoporosis in children - causes

In order for bones to be strong and, for example, to quickly heal after fracture, there must be a balance between the cells responsible for the processes of their formation (osteoblasts) and the cells responsible for their destruction (osteoclasts). This balance depends, inter alia, on on the correct concentration of hormones in the body, burdening the skeleton (i.e. whether we play a sport intensively), the right amount of protein and calcium and vitamins (especially vitamin D3).

Osteoporosis in children can result not only from inadequate diet, but also from diseases, especially some endocrine diseases, systemic connective tissue diseases, and gastrointestinal diseases.

Chronic corticosteroid use and prolonged immobilization may also play a role in the development of osteoporosis in children.

Sometimes the causes of osteoporosis in children are unknown. This is theidiopathic juvenile osteoporosis(or juvenile idiopathic osteoporosis) that most often occurs before puberty. Perhaps genetic factors, vitamin D deficiency, infectious agent (e.g. viruses), and immune disorders play a role in its development. It may also have an endocrine background.

Osteoporosis in children - symptoms

Idiopathic juvenile osteoporosis manifests itself as:

  • fracture after minimal trauma
  • pain in the area of ​​the spine and limbs, especially in the lower (ankle joints)
  • gait disturbance
  • progressive decline in muscle strength

Juvenile idiopathic osteoporosis can lead to bone deformities, scoliosis, kyphosis, varus, and valgus limbs.

Osteoporosis in children - diagnosis

The final diagnosis is densitometry. According to the World He alth Organization (WHO), if the result of T.score densitometry (bone density measured, for example, from the spine or femoral neck) drops below minus 1, we speak of osteopenia, and if below minus 2.5 - osteoporosis. Fortunately, most of the children interviewed were about osteopenia.

Osteoporosis in children - treatment

Drug treatment of osteoporosis in children is difficult. They cannot be given drugs used in adults: alendronates and risendronates, estro- and androgenic hormones, sodium fluoride, raloxifene. It is risky to use parathyroid hormone (PTH) in small, intermittent daily doses. In some cases, only calcitonin may be administered. In fact, the only method of treatment is to provide adequate amounts of calcium - in the form of ready-made preparations or mixtures of vitamin D and calcium.

Osteoporosis in children - diet

Improper, irrational eating is a big problem. The "fast-food" style of eating taken over from the west (casseroles, french fries, crisps, bars, hamburgers) saturates the young organism with fat and sugar. There is no place for macronutrients (calcium), micronutrients, vitamins, valuable protein. It is also worth realizing that cola, s alt and preservatives additionally leach calcium from the bones.

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There is no other advice - be sure to take care of a proper diet and a dose of exercise (especially in the sun) in your child.





To limit

Restriction reasons

Milk and milk products

two slices of cheese and a glass of milk or milk products

white cheese (low fat), sheep cheese, skim milk, sour milk, yoghurt, cottage cheese

processed cheese, sour cream and sweet cream, butter

added phosphates ,

too much fat


250g (e.g. a salad in the form of a salad)

cabbage, broccoli, leek, lettuce, herbs (e.g. basil, mint)

rhubarb, spinach, beetroot

presence of organic acids


200g (spread over two servings throughout the day)

also dried

without significant restrictions


Grain products


wholemeal bread, muesli, oatmeal

white bread

makes you fat, low in fiber

Dinner supplements

different every day

potatoes, brown rice, legumes, pasta

too many flour products


Meat and cold cuts, fish and eggs

fish 1-2 times a week, meat twice a week

sea fish, lean meat

poultry, eggs, sausages

added phosphate , too much protein




s alt

increases kidney calcium excretion


minimum two liters

still mineral water, diluted juices, herbal and fruit teas

cola, coffee, tea

as above

Fats, sweets, nuts

tablespoon of vegetable oil, others in small amounts

cheese cakes, almonds, sesame

general fat, sugar, chocolate, peanuts

rules of he althy eating

this causes an imbalance between calcium and phosphate and affects the bone-building process; too high concentration of preservative phosphates disturbs the absorption of calcium from the gastrointestinal tract

organic acids combine with calcium, reducing its absorption

disturbance of the balance between calcium and proteins increases renal excretion of calcium

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