, Volume 28, Issue 3, pp 342-350
Date: 19 Dec 2009

Hop rho iso-alpha acids, berberine, vitamin D3 and vitamin K1 favorably impact biomarkers of bone turnover in postmenopausal women in a 14-week trial

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Osteoporosis is a major health issue facing postmenopausal women. Increased production of pro-inflammatory cytokines resulting from declining estrogen leads to increased bone resorption. Nutrition can have a positive impact on osteoporosis prevention and amelioration. The objective of this study was to investigate the impact of targeted phytochemicals and nutrients essential for bone health on bone turnover markers in healthy postmenopausal women. In this 14-week, single-blinded, 2-arm placebo-controlled pilot study, all women were instructed to consume a modified Mediterranean-style low-glycemic-load diet and to engage in limited aerobic exercise; 17 randomized to the placebo and 16 to the treatment arm (receiving 200 mg hop rho iso-alpha acids, 100 mg berberine sulfate trihydrate, 500 IU vitamin D3 and 500 μg vitamin K1, twice daily). Thirty-two women completed the study. Baseline nutrient intake did not differ between arms. At 14 weeks, the treatment arm exhibited an estimated 31% mean reduction (P = 0.02) in serum osteocalcin (a marker of bone turnover), whereas the placebo arm exhibited a 19% increase (P = 0.03) compared to baseline. Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) increased by 13% (P = 0.24) in the treatment arm and decreased by 25% (P < 0.01) in the placebo arm. The between-arm differences for OC and 25(OH)D were statistically significant. Serum IGF-I was increased in both arms, but the increase was more significant in the treatment arm at 14 weeks (P < 0.01). Treatment with hop rho iso-alpha acids, berberine sulfate trihydrate, vitamin D3 and vitamin K1 produced a more favorable bone biomarker profile that supports a healthy bone metabolism.

M. F. Holick and J. J. Lamb contributed equally.