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Mediterranean Diet and Bone Mineral Density in Premenopausal Women

6/4/2019 3:20:50 PM
Adherence to a Mediterranean Diet pattern has been associated with numerous health benefits, including a reduced risk of all-cause mortality and mortality from coronary heart disease and cancer. A 2018 meta-analysis found that the Mediterranean Diet was associated with a 21% reduction in the risk for hip fractures and was positively associated with the bone mineral density (BMD) of the spine and femoral neck. The present cross-sectional study, published in Nutrients in 2019, investigated the association between adherence to a Mediterranean Diet and BMD in premenopausal women.  

Study examines effect of Mediterranean diet on bone mineral density

A total of 442 Spanish women (mean age = 43 years) participated in this study. All of the women were healthy, and their medical histories showed no presence of low-trauma fractures or use of anti-osteoporotic drugs. Adherence to a Mediterranean Diet was assessed with the MedDietScore and compared with measurements of BMD.  
BMD was assessed using 3 validated techniques. Dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) measured BMD of the lumbar spine, Ward’s triangle, trochanter, and hip. Peripheral quantitative computed tomography (pQCT) measured volumetric BMD (vBMD) of the distal forearm. Quantitative bone ultrasound (QUS) measured the amplitude-dependent speed of sound (Ad-SOS) of the phalanx.

Results show Mediterranean diet beneficial for bone density

Results showed that higher adherence to a Mediterranean diet pattern was positively and significantly associated with BMD as measured by all 3 techniques. Multiple linear regression analysis showed that a Mediterranean diet pattern was significantly associated with Ad-SOS of the phalanx (beta=0.099), BMD of the femoral neck (beta=0.114), BMD of Ward’s triangle (beta=0.125), vBMD total density (beta=0.119), vBMD trabecular density (beta=0.120), and vBMD cortical density (beta=0.122) but was not associated with trochanter BMD or lumber BMD.
This is the first study to relate BMD as measured by pQCT and QUS to a Mediterranean diet pattern. The results of this study are consistent with previous studies that have found some of the components of the Mediterranean diet to benefit bone health (e.g., fruits, vegetables, and fish). This cross-sectional study suggests that a Mediterranean diet pattern supports bone health in healthy premenopausal women, but longitudinal studies or clinical trials are needed to confirm the association.
Pérez-Rey J, Roncero-Martín R, Rico-Martín S et al. Adherence to a Mediterranean Diet and Bone Mineral Density in Spanish Premenopausal Women. Nutrients. 2019; 11.
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