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Thursday, May 23, 2013
Regular exercise is an important part of preventing osteoporosis and improving overall health. However, some sports tend to overemphasize the importance of low body weight and involve excessive training to a degree that can be unhealthy. These sports include:
These young female athletes with very low body weights may be at risk for:
Keep in mind though, that gymnasts who have normal periods (eumenorrhea) have much higher than normal bone mass. Only athletes who develop menstrual problems are at significant risk for bone disease.
Not having periods (amenorrhea) causes a decrease in the female hormone estrogen, putting these female athletes at higher risk for osteoporosis.
Female athletes who are experiencing menstrual abnormalities, eating disorders, or amenorrhea should see a physician for testing and treatment.
Last Reviewed: Jul 13, 2010
Margery Gass, MD
Formely, Professor, Clinical Obstetrics & Gynecology
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati
Thomas A deHoop, MD
Formerly Associate Professor of Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology
Director, Medical Student Education
No longer associated
Jane Korsberg, MS, RD, LD
Senior Instructor of Nutrition
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University