A study in the September 23rd issue of Nature by Drs Roman C Muhlbauer and Feng Li of the University of Bern in Switzerland showed that a variety of salads, herbs and cooked vegetables can alter bone metabolism in rats. In particular, a mixture of 500 mg each of onion and Italian parsley, and a mixture of lettuce, tomato, cucumber, arrugula, onion, garlic, wild garlic, common parsley, Italian parsley and dill significantly inhibited bone resorption indicating that the effect was additive. Furthermore, when male rats were fed one gram of dry onion per day, bone resorption was inhibited by 20 percent. That was slightly higher than the effect of calcitonin, at doses comparable to what is used to treat postmenopausal women. If these results could be duplicated in humans, then consuming some of these vegetables on a daily basis could be an "effective and inexpensive way to decrease the incidence of osteoporosis."
Further Reading: Nature 1999;401:343-4.
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