Prunes, an Unsung Osteoporosis Hero

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PrunesWhen we think of strong bones, calcium and Vitamin D often come to mind.  We seldom acknowledge the many other vitamins and minerals that play a crucial role in bone health.  In fact, it seems scientists are still unraveling the many pieces of the osteoporosis puzzle, and as they do, new “superfoods” emerge.

Take the “dried plum” for example.  A study out of Oklahoma State University, indicated that post-menopausal women who consume moderate quantities of prunes (just 12 a day) present increased rates of markers of bone formation.  If the beneficial results continue, dried plums may have the potential to produce clinically significant increases in bone mass.

Another prune study on post-menopausal women is underway at the Florida State University College of Human Sciences, to hopefully confirm these solid findings. 

While these studies have focused on the primary risk group for osteoporosis, it seems the opposite sex need not feel left out of the prune frenzy.  Scientists at the University of Oklahoma believe dried plums may also help prevent skeletal deterioration in men.

While dried plums, okay prunes, may not sound exciting on their own, they can be included in “raw” recipes for some additional excitement.  Try this simple smoothie recipe, which includes one serving of prunes:

Potassium Powerhouse Smoothie

1/4 cup pitted prunes (4 or 5 medium prunes)
1 banana
1 cup rice, almond, or soymilk

Directions: Blend until smooth.  Though you can add sweetener if desired, all three ingredients should pack a sweet punch.

About Author

Alisa is the founder of GoDairyFree.org, Senior Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.

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