Four in five Australians deprioritising bone health

Four in five Australians deprioritising bone health

New report reveals millions may be risking breaks by not looking out for bone health.

Around 14 million Australian adults may be neglecting their bone health, putting them at risk of fractures, bone health problems and osteoporosis. This is according to a new report (1) set for release today, that reveals up to four in five Australians do not actively undertake the three important lifestyle steps to improve bone health calcium, vitamin D and exercise.

The report found that more than half of adults (56 per cent) are not concerned about osteoporosis and only one in 20 ranked bone health as their number one priority with heart (42 per cent), brain (37 per cent) and skin health (8 per cent) topping the list of priorities.

The release of the report coincides with Healthy Bones Action Week (Aug 20-26), which is encouraging all Australians to take action for healthy bones.

According to Professor Richard Prince, bone health expert from UWA Medical School, Perth, the results suggest that we need to take bone health more seriously.

“Because bone loss commences after age 25, Australians need to do more to look after their bone health throughout life to reduce their risk of osteoporosis.”

Despite government guidelines recommending dairy foods, such as milk, cheese, yoghurt or alternatives throughout life, three in five Australians believe that it is more important for children to have dairy than adults. However, at all ages we are continually renewing our skeleton so that we get a new one every five to 10 years.

“The truth is that Australians of all ages need to have adequate calcium intake (2), adequate vitamin D levels, and regular weight bearing exercise to support their bone health.

“There are plenty of ways to get the recommended amount of calcium per day. Having two to four serves of calcium rich dairy foods will help you meet your recommendations, and provide, magnesium, protein and other bone friendly nutrients.”

Having strong, healthy bones is important throughout all stages of life. Bones provide the body with its foundations, support and structure to help us live active and healthy lives.

It is estimated that 66% of people over 50 years of age have osteoporosis or osteopenia or poor bone health. (3) These conditions have a significant impact on illness, pain and disability.

“Once we’re adults, we need to take good care of our bodies which includes maintaining healthy bones and reducing the risk of breaks. Many of us service our cars better than we service our own bodies” said Prof Prince.

About Healthy Bones Action Week
Healthy Bones Action Week, supported by Dairy Australia is encouraging all Australians to take action for healthy bones, using these three simple steps; weight bearing exercise, calcium-rich foods and vitamin D from safe sun exposure.
Dairy Australia is bringing bone health to the forefront of the minds of Australian schools, households and communities through education, programs and fun ways for parents, teachers and children to become involved.

About the Healthy Bones Action Week Research
The Healthy Bones Action Week Research commissioned by Dairy Australia, surveyed 1,017 Australians about their thoughts and perceptions towards bone health and dairy consumption. The survey featured 10 questions, with a national representation of Australians aged 18 and over.

Media enquiries:
Aaron Dowling — Account Director, Edelman
0474 269 294 /

Cassie Whelan — PR Manager, Dairy Australia
0422 677 476 /

1 Healthy Bones Action Week Research commissioned by Dairy Australia.
2 Australian Dietary Guidelines 2013 – National Health and Medical Research Council
3 Osteoporosis costing all Australians: A new burden of disease analysis – 2012 to 2022