I’ve written about olive oil and bone health previously. Now, two Egyptian researchers suggest olive oil may be a “promising” option for treating post-menopausal women who suffer from osteoporosis. The pair also suggest it could help prevent the bone-loss disease.
Women who’ve entered menopause are particularly susceptible to osteoporosis when their estrogen production drops, note the researchers, Nermine Saleh and Hanan Saleh, both members of the medical faculty at Egypt’s Ain Shams University. Bone fractures are a leading cause of disease and death among such women.
The researchers said their results — published in the open-access journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine — suggest “olive oil represents a promising … option for the prevention and/or treatment of postmenopausal osteoporosis.” (Click here to see the full study.)
The researchers divided female rats into three groups. One group effectively was given menopause after their ovaries were removed.
A second group was given extra virgin olive oil for four weeks before their ovaries were removed and for an additional eight weeks afterward. A third non-menopausal group acted as a control group.
At the end of the experiment, researchers collected blood, bone and liver samples from the rats. The samples were analyzed to see whether the rats had gained or lost bone mass.
The rats given an olive oil diet “markedly improved” in terms of their bone thickness and their ability to replace lost bone mass. The researchers added that “one likely reason for this improvement in bone loss” was olive oil’s high level of monounsaturated fats. This fatty acid, Saleh and Saleh noted, “has been reported to affect bone mineral density.”
Claude S. Weiller
Vice President of Sales & Marketing
California Olive Ranch