Milk fermented with Lactobacillus
helveticus) has been shown to lower blood pressure
and to increase bone mineral content in spontaneously
hypertensive rats. The effect of L.helveticus may be due to better
Aim of the
In the present study the effect of milk fermented with
L. helveticus on acute
changes in calcium metabolism and bone resorption in
postmenopausal women was studied.
The study was performed as a randomised double-blind
crossover study of 20 postmenopausal women (mean age 65, range
50–78). The study was carried out in two parts. Firstly,
L. helveticus fermented milk
was compared to a control milk. Secondly, juice containing
peptides formed with L.
helveticus bacteria was compared to a control juice.
The acute effect on calcium metabolism was measured during the
study day by serum ionised calcium (iCa), parathyroid hormone
(PTH), calcium (Ca), phosphate (P), and urinary calcium. A
direct marker of bone turnover, carboxyterminal telopeptide of
type I collagen (ICTP), was measured from the serum.
L. helveticus fermented
milk reduced serum PTH (405.3 ± 37 ng/l vs. 454.9 ± 37, p =
0.012) and increased serum calcium (19.1 ± 0.2 mmol/l vs. 18.8 ±
0.2, p = 0.031) compared to the control milk.
L. helveticus derived
peptides had no significant acute effect on calcium metabolism,
in fact, ionised calcium was lower and PTH higher after the
juice containing peptides compared to the control juice.
Fermentation of milk with Lactobacillus helveticus had a positive
acute effect on calcium metabolism. This effect was not
explained by the small peptides formed by