Middle-aged women unable to see sunlight due to Corona 19, concerns about depression and osteoporosis

1 in 3 people complain of depression… 41.6% of women feel depressed
Depression and stress increase the risk of musculoskeletal disorders such as osteoporosis
Vitamin D deficiency increased 3.2 times in 5 years… sunlight and vitamin D intake
It is a home training habit, and weight training such as walking is carried out at least 3 times a week.

Normal bone (left) and bone with osteoporosis (right)

Due to the new coronavirus infection (Corona 19), the number of ‘vomiters’ is increasing rapidly. With the number of patients with vitamin D deficiency increasing significantly each year, the Zipcocks confined to their homes are threatening their bone health as the amount of sunlight decreases due to seasonal factors. In addition, isolation due to the prolonged COVID-19 crisis causes depression and stress. With the help of Hakjae Kim, director of Jaseng Korean Medicine Hospital, we learn about bone health and management in the age of COVID-19. ◇ Corona 19 complains of depression and stress… women are more vulnerable

Due to the daily life that has changed to Corona 19, psychological anxiety and isolation have increased, and many people are suffering from ‘Corona Blue’. Corona Blue is a compound word of ‘Corona 19’ and ‘Depression (Blue)’ and refers to the symptoms of feeling negative emotions and physical discomfort caused by the spread of an infectious disease.

According to the results of a survey of 1,000 men and women between the ages of 19 and 59 nationwide in July by Embrain Trend Monitor, a market research organization, 35.2% of respondents experienced Corona Blue. One in three people are depressed because of COVID-19. In terms of gender, women (41.6%) were higher than men (28.8%). As time spent living at home has increased significantly, the burden of raising children has increased significantly, and the spread of telecommunications has blurred the boundaries between work and childcare. In particular, women are vulnerable to depression and stress because emotional changes occur due to hormonal changes before and after menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause. The problem is that these feelings of depression and emotional stress can be the cause of threatening the health of the musculoskeletal system.

◇ Middle-aged women vulnerable to depression and stress, higher risk of osteoporosis

Depression is a mental illness, but it also affects the body. In this regard, studies have indicated that women who suffer from depression are more likely to develop osteoporosis even before menopause. A research team at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) carried out a bone density test on 89 depressed women and 44 depressed women between the ages of 21 and 45. It was much higher than 2% of women. In the case of low lumbar bone mineral density, depressed women were found to be 20% more than non-depressed women (9%). This result was due to increased secretion of bone-destroying proteins in depressed women. In addition, when stress is severe due to Corona 19, excessive secretion of adrenal cortical hormones can cause bones to weaken due to a decrease in bone density.

Osteoporosis is a disease that weakens bones and increases the risk of fracture. It is commonly known as a disease in which holes are drilled in the bones. Therefore, the quality of bone density is of utmost importance. Bone density is highest around the age of 35 and gradually decreases. In women, as menopause occurs around the age of 50, bone density decreases very rapidly. For this reason, osteoporosis is recognized as a disease that occurs in middle-aged women.

“Middle-aged women experience emotional and physical changes before and after menopause,” said Kim Hak-jae, director of Jaseng Korean Medicine Hospital. Falls are common even at home, so prevention efforts are now essential.”

◇ Autumn when the amount of sunlight decreases… Take care of your vitamin D intake to increase bone density

Physical isolation due to Corona 19 is also a factor that eats away at the bone health of middle-aged women, but environmental factors cannot be ignored. This is because the amount of sunshine has decreased as summer has passed and autumn has come. In addition, as the time for indoor activities increases, vitamin D cannot be absorbed sufficiently.

The problem is that the number of people visiting hospitals due to vitamin D deficiency is increasing significantly every year. According to the Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service, the number of patients with vitamin D deficiency increased approximately 3.2 times from 49,852 in 2015 to 159,424 in 2019. During the same period, the number of female patients with vitamin D deficiency also increased rapidly, with an increase of 3.2 times more. In terms of gender, vitamin D deficiency was more severe in women. As of 2019, there were 125,610 female patients with vitamin D deficiency, approximately four times more male patients than 33,814. Vitamin D is a nutrient closely related to bones, joints, and bone density, so a lack of it can worsen musculoskeletal diseases such as osteoporosis. Even 10 to 15 minutes of sunlight a day can get you enough vitamin D, but even this is not easy these days. In this case, taking vitamin D supplements can also be a way. The recommended daily intake of vitamin D is around 600 IU and 800 IU for those over 70.

In oriental medicine, herbal medicines that prevent the reduction of bone density are used to treat and prevent osteoporosis. A typical herbal medicine is cartilage strengthening pill (JSOG-6). Jaseng Korean Medicine Hospital Spine and Joint Research Center and Seoul National University College of Pharmacy Natural Product Science Research Center conducted joint research and reported the results of a study that oriental herbal medicine complex (Cartilage Strengthening Pill) has the effect of preventing osteoporosis . and bone protection in the international journal ‘BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine’ (2014).

◇ Home training is a shortcut to keeping bones healthy when you’re stuck at home

Even if it is difficult to get out, you can prevent a decrease in bone density by exercising regularly at home. At this stage, it is good to combine weight training and strength training as aerobic exercise. In general, when walking, the lower part of the body receives twice as much weight. If you have to do indoor activities like these days, it’s good to walk instead at home.

As much as five times the body weight is carried when running, it can become too much after middle age. Therefore, it is better to pay attention to walking rather than running. Exercises such as nude gymnastics and walking in place are good at a level between light and moderate intensity. Exercise time is at least 20 minutes, and it is recommended to do it at least 3 times a week.

“To overcome the COVID-19 situation wisely, it is necessary to thoroughly manage quarantine and comprehensively check your own health condition,” said Kim Hak-jae, director of Jaseng Korean Medicine Hospital. It is important to take various measures to promote it,” he said.

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