Moderate Alcohol Consumption May Help Prevent Bone Loss, Study Suggests

Moderate Alcohol Consumption May Help Prevent Bone Loss, Study Suggests

ScienceDaily (July 11, 2012) Drinking a moderate amount of alcohol as part of a healthy lifestyle may benefit women’s bone health, lowering their risk of developing osteoporosis.

A new study assessed the effects of alcohol withdrawal on bone turnover in postmenopausal women who drank one or two drinks per day several times a week. Researchers at Oregon State University measured a significant increase in blood markers of bone turnover in women after they stopped drinking for just two weeks.

Bones are in a constant state of remodeling with old bone being removed and replaced. In people with osteoporosis, more bone is lost than reformed resulting in porous, weak bones. About 80 percent of all people with osteoporosis are women, and postmenopausal women face an even greater risk because estrogen, a hormone that helps keep bone remodeling in balance, decreases after menopause.

Past studies have shown that moderate drinkers have a higher bone density than non-drinkers or heavy drinkers, but these studies have provided no explanation for the differences in bone density. Alcohol appears to behave similarly to estrogen in that it reduces bone turnover, the researchers said.

In the current study, published online July 11 in the journal Menopause, researchers in OSU’s Skeletal Biology Laboratory studied 40 early postmenopausal women who regularly had one or two drinks a day, were not on any hormone replacement therapies, and had no history of osteoporosis-related fractures.

The researchers found evidence for increased bone turnover — a risk factor for osteoporotic fractures — during the two week period when the participants stopped drinking. Even more surprising: the researchers found that less than a day after the women resumed their normal drinking, their bone turnover rates returned to previous levels.

“Drinking moderately as part of a healthy lifestyle that includes a good diet and exercise may be beneficial for bone health, especially in postmenopausal women,” said Urszula Iwaniec, associate professor in the College of Public Health and Human Sciences at OSU and one of the study’s authors. “After less than 24 hours to see such a measurable effect was really unexpected.”

Iwaniec, OSU’s Skeletal Biology Laboratory director Russell Turner, and researcher Gianni Maddalozzo assisted OSU alumna Jill Marrone with the study, which was Marrone’s master’s thesis.

This study is important because it suggests a cellular mechanism for the increased bone density often observed in postmenopausal women who are moderate drinkers, Turner said.

The researchers said many of the medications to help prevent bone loss are not only expensive, but can have unwanted side effects. While excessive drinking has a negative impact on health, drinking a glass of wine or beer regularly as part of a healthy lifestyle may be helpful for postmenopausal women.

Healthy Lifestyle

“Everyone loses bone as they age, but not everyone develops osteoporosis,” Turner said. “Being able to identify factors, such as moderate alcohol intake, that influence bone health will help people make informed lifestyle choices.”

The study was funded by grants from the National Institutes of Health and the John C. Erkkila, M.D. Endowment for Health and Human Performance.

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The above story is reprinted from materials[1] provided by Oregon State University[2].

Note: Materials may be edited for content and length. For further information, please contact the source cited above.

Journal Reference:

  1. Marrone, Jill A.; Maddalozzo, Gianni F.; Branscum, Adam J.; Hardin, Karin; Cialdella-Kam, Lynn; Philbrick, Kenneth A.; Breggia, Anne C.; Rosen, Clifford J.; Turner, Russell T.; Iwaniec, Urszula T. Moderate alcohol intake lowers biochemical markers of bone turnover in postmenopausal women. Menopause, 9 July 2012 DOI: 10.1097/GME.0b013e31824ac071[3]

Note: If no author is given, the source is cited instead.

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of ScienceDaily or its staff.

References

  1. ^ materials (oregonstate.edu)
  2. ^ Oregon State University (oregonstate.edu)
  3. ^ 10.1097/GME.0b013e31824ac071 (dx.doi.org)

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10 Responses to “Moderate Alcohol Consumption May Help Prevent Bone Loss, Study Suggests”

  1. Healthy Lifestyle? I usually go on a medium intensity run for 60 minutes a day, four to five days a week. In addition, I do a total of at least 150 push ups and sit ups in each work out. I don’t consume more than 1500-1600 calories a day. I eat little to no junk food, and take my vitamins. I’m 18, male, and weigh about 164, around 14 to 15 percent body fat. Do I lead a healthy lifestyle? If there are ways to improve, let me know.

    View Comment
    • HealthNut Reply

      I think you are doing very well. Never give it up and try to maintain it as your lifestyle.

      Good Luck

      View Comment
  2. Healthy Lifestyle………? I wanna start a healthy lifestyle but I dunno where to start, can you please help? I’d really appreciate that and by the way, I’m 16.

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    • HealthNut Reply

      Begin by giving up fast food it is so full of fat, sugar, carbs, and all the wrong things for you. My daughter gave up soda and lost 20 pounds because it is loaded with sugar. Eat fish not fried 2 to 3 times a week, chicken 2 to 3 times a week skinless, lots of vegetables, and fruit and you will be getting there.

      View Comment
  3. How Can I Pursue A More Healthy Lifestyle To Help Me Attain My Maximum Potential In Life ? I am 28, and have always had a bad health because of depression and anxiety. But I want to change it I need some tips on how to pursue a really healthy lifestyle which helps people in their mental and physical wellbeing?

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    • HealthNut Reply

      Two of the healthiest diets in the world are the Mediterranean diet and the Okinawa diet.

      Yoga often helps for anxiety and depression as it promotes mental and physical wellbeing.

      View Comment
  4. How The Computer Is Supporting Us In Our Healthy Lifestyle? How do computer helps people in their healthy lifestyle? How can The computer help people? Is it from websites? advertisements? I need it really badly. How can the computer is supporting to improve our healthy lifestyle. in what ways? How can computer promote the quality of healthy lifestyle. How can computer convince people to stop unnecessary things like drugs or alcohol? How can computer HELP us?
    AT least 6-8 points would do. thank you.

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    • HealthNut Reply

      The computer is not a healthy lifestyle for people. It programs us to thinking we can find everything on here. Jobs, pay bills, shop, everything! We can do that ourselves and it seems technology is taking the chores away from us, that can be easily done by human themself. The computer can help us though when we need to find information, imformation fast. Websites help us retain information, advertisements are just like commericals there just trying to sell or maniupulate us to buy whatever their advertising. The computer is not improving our healthy lifestyle. Peoples eyes can go out of sight and hurt very badly(like mine and i’m only 15 years old.) from years and years staring at the computer. The worst thing to stare at is a computer screen — I don’t know why I still do it for hours at end, but I do. The computer will never promote the quality of healthy lifestyle, its just not possible. The computer can convince people to stop drugs and alcohol but if you think about it would you rather have an obsession over the computer for hours at the day, you have to be near the computer you have to be on it then doing drugs or alcohol? The computer is just as bad addiction as alcohol and drugs. The computer cannot HELP us other then give us fast information when we need it. The computer although has so much information and so many untrusted sites you never know if what your reading is a lie. And I hope I get 10 points because I just wasted my time answering this long question, I hope you weren’t just asking this for the heck of this — I hope it was for some essay lol.

      Take care bye

      View Comment
  5. Why Is It Important To Live A Healthy Lifestyle And Avoid Illness? Why is it important to live a healthy lifestyle and avoid illness?

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      Being unhealthy or sick stops you doing things you want to do. Being sick when you could have avoided it is a waste of other peoples time if they have to look after you

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