Fragility fracture and bone mineral density (BMD) are influenced by common and modifiable lifestyle factors. In this study, we sought to define the contribution of lifestyle factors to fracture risk by using a profiling approach. The study involved 1683 women and 1010 men (50+ years old, followed up for up to 20 years). The incidence of new fractures was ascertained by X-ray reports. A “lifestyle risk score” (LRS) was derived as the weighted sum of effects of dietary calcium intake, physical activity index, and cigarette smoking. Each individual had a unique LRS, with higher scores being associated with a healthier lifestyle. Baseline values of lifestyle factors were assessed. In either men or women, individuals with a fracture had a significantly lower age-adjusted LRS than those without a fracture. In men, each unit lower in LRS was associated with a 66% increase in the risk of total fracture (non-adjusted hazard ratio [HR] 1.66; 95% CI, 1.26 to 2.20) and still significant after adjusting for age, weight or BMD. However, in women, the association was uncertain (HR 1.30; 95% CI, 1.11 to 1.53). These data suggest that unhealthy lifestyle habits are associated with an increased risk of fracture in men, but not in women, and that the association is mediated by BMD.


osteoporosis, fragility fractures, bone density, bone strength, lifestyle, risk score

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