A large study from Europe reveals that post-menopausal women who adhere to a Mediterranean diet are at a much-lowered risk of hip fractures. This latest study conducted by researchers at the University of Würtzburg is one of the first to show that a specific diet can reduce the risk of hip fractures.
This German Study
1) the association between adherence to a diet quality index based on dietary recommendations and patterns, bone health and outcome in postmenopausal women and
2) assess the association between lean body mass measurements and diet quality bone mineral density.
The researchers collected data from nearly 90,000 women with an average of 64 from nearly 40 clinical institutions. They assessed several dietary programs including the Mediterranean diet and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH). Each of these diets encompassed a combination of vegetables, fruits, nuts, fish, legumes, mono-saturated fats and whole grains.
The study lasted just over a decade from 1993 to 2014. They noted 2,121 hip fractures in the participants and a total of 28, 718 fractures. Women who ate the Mediterranean diet had the lowest hip fracture rate.
The conclusion was that the Mediterranean diet does decrease the risk of hip fractures in postmenopausal women. In fact, there is already evidence showing that the population around the Mediterranean sea has a lower incidence of osteoarthritis compared to the northern Europeans.
Many people consume a Mediterranean diet but so far no one has ever looked at the incidence of hip fracture. One should understand that there are other important causes of hip fracture in North Americans. These are lack of exercise, decreased sun exposure, tobacco, alcohol use, and poor dietary intake of vitamin D. Whether the diet can overcome these risk factors and still reduce the risk of hip fractures still remain to be seen.