Dried Plums May Improve Bone Health of Post-Menopausal Women
Bone degeneration can be a serious problem for women who have gone through menopause. A recent study suggests that eating dried plums daily may reduce bone resorption and improve bone health in post-menopausal women.
Bone resorption is the process in which bone is broken down within the body so it can be replaced by new bone tissue. If bone resorption becomes accelerated, bone is broken down faster than it can be renewed. The bone becomes more porous and fragile, exposing people to the risk of fractures.
Participants in the study included 48 osteopenic women between the ages of 65 and 79. Over the course of six months they consumed either 50 g of dried plum, 100 g of dried plum, or a placebo daily. Total body, hip, and lumbar bone mineral density were assessed at baseline and the six month mark via dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry.
The researchers noted reduced levels of tartare resistant acid phosphatase-5b, a marker of bone resorption, in both of the dried plum groups at the three and six month mark. They did not note any similar results in the placebo group.
Researchers from San Diego State University and Florida State University conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on February 22, 2016, in Osteoporosis International.
Dried plums contain high amounts of fiber, vitamin A, B vitamins, calcium, iron, phosphorus, potassium, and some protein. They have been linked to relief from constipation, improved blood circulation and slowing the aging of the brain and body.
Dried plums can be eaten on their own or added to baked goods, salads, or taken in juice form. If you are interested in the bone health benefits of prunes, the researchers recommend eating two or three a day and gradually increasing your intake until your body is acclimated enough to consume ten daily.