Post-menopausal women have a significantly increased risk for osteoporosis. Bone density declines after menopause and osteoporosis has become a major health problem in our aging population. Interestingly, astronauts who spend extended periods of time in space are also a high-risk group. This 2020 study (using rats suspended in a microgravity model) explored a nutritional strategy to support the bone health of astronauts by supplementing with collagen.
Supplementation with bovine collagen peptides was associated in the study with inhibition of bone loss. The collagen peptide groups demonstrated partial prevention of the deterioration of bone microarchitecture. The study authors suggest that dietary supplementation of collagen peptide compounds may represent an adjunct strategy to support bone health.
Another study showed that collagen peptides improved bone mineral density in menopausal and post-menopausal women, while a third study demonstrated that adding collagen to a calcitonin supplementation regimen enhanced and prolonged the positive effects of collagen as evidenced by a decrease in bone loss markers.
Adequate protein intake plays a major role in bone development and maintenance. Protein provides building blocks for bone formation as well as exerting a regulatory function.
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