Whilst complete prevention of osteoporosis may not be possible, measures can be taken to reduce bone loss. These measures include regular weight-bearing exercise and calcium and vitamin D supplements (or food rich in these), stopping smoking and reducing coffee and alcohol intake. People should not wait until they are older to start these preventive activities.
There is evidence that hormone replacement therapy may lower the risk of osteoporosis in women by increasing bone density, reducing the number of fractures, and improving balance. However, there are risks associated with this therapy, including an increased risk for uterine and breast cancers and blood clots. Other treatments available include drugs called bisphosphonates which reduce bone breakdown, and selective oestrogen receptor modulators. These drugs maintain bone density and reduce the risk of having fractures.