Olive Oil Consumption Linked to Increased Serum Osteocalcin

Bone formation markers improved for elderly men who consume Mediterranean diet plus olive oil

THURSDAY, Aug. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Consumption of olive oil in addition to a Mediterranean diet correlates with increased osteocalcin levels and improvements in bone formation markers in elderly men at high cardiovascular risk, according to a study published online Aug. 1 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

José Manuel Fernández-Real, M.D., Ph.D., from the Hospital Dr. Josep Trueta in Girona, Spain, and colleagues conducted a prospective study to examine the effect of olive oil consumption on circulating osteocalcin in humans. Elderly men at high cardiovascular risk were randomly allocated to a low-fat control diet (34 participants); a Mediterranean diet enriched in nuts (MedDiet + nuts; 51 participants); or a MedDiet enriched with virgin olive oil (MedDiet + VOO; 42 participants). The men were followed for two years.

The researchers observed a significant increase in total osteocalcin concentration in the MedDiet + VOO group, but not in the MedDiet + nuts or the control diet. Similar increases were seen in procollagen I N-terminal propeptide concentration and homeostasis model assessment-β-cell function in the MedDiet + VOO group. In the total cohort, consumption of olives correlated positively with baseline total osteocalcin and two-year osteocalcin concentrations.

"In summary, the consumption of a MedDiet enriched with virgin olive oil for two years is associated with increased serum osteocalcin concentrations that parallel an increase in β-cell function in elderly men at high cardiovascular risk, suggesting a protective effect on bone," the authors write.

Two authors disclosed nonpaid board memberships, one to the International Nut Council and one to the California Walnut Commission.

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