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Yoga For Osteoporosis: 8 Poses To Support Bone Health (PHOTOS)

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YOGA FOR OSTEOPOROSIS
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In addition to providing stress reduction and a mild workout, yoga can also be an effective treatment for osteoporosis, either on its own or supplemented by other treatments. Research has shown that yoga can prevent or slow -- and in some cases even reverse -- the process of bone loss.

Osteoporosis -- a disease characterized by weak, thinning bones that can lead to fractures -- affects an estimated 200 million women worldwide, and one in three women over 50 experience osteoporotic fractures. Classic risk factors for osteoporosis include being female, age, low body weight and smoking.

"I know [yoga] can help because I've done the studies," medical director of Manhattan Physical Medicine Dr. Loren Fishman, who has done extensive research on yoga and osteoporosis, told Huff/Post50. Commenting on a pilot study involving individuals with an average age of 68, he said, "We did a bone mineral density (DEXA) scan, then we taught half of them the yoga, waited two years, and did another scan. And not only did these people not lose bone, they gained bone. The ones who didn't do the yoga lost a little bone, as you would expect."

Fishman added that practicing yoga did not cause any serious injuries or fractures in the subjects of his research. "It seems to be safe and effective," he says.

If you're looking to promote good bone health and ward off osteoporosis, try taking up a therapeutic yoga practice. Click through the slideshow below for eight yoga poses recommended for good bone health.

Tell us: Would you ever try yoga to relieve the pain of osteoporosis? Share your thoughts in the comments or tweet @HuffPost50.

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