Bone density in postmenopausal women can be improved with a 12-month daily oral administration of 5g of specific collagen peptides, say researchers in Germany. A total of 131 women aged 46 to 80, were randomised to receive either a daily dose of collagen peptide or a placebo powder. The substances were dissolved in a glass of water and taken before breakfast. All subjects were given information on the importance of regular physical activity and balanced nutrition. They were also encouraged to take a daily dose of calcium (500-800mg) and vitamin D (400-800iu). A DEXA scan of the lumbar spine at L1-L4, and at the neck of the thigh bone, was performed at baseline and after 12 months. Blood levels of bone markers were also monitored.
In the 102 women who completed the study, there were significant improvements in bone mineral density in the peptide group: 3% in the spine and 7% in the femoral neck. In the placebo group, bone density actually fell by around 1%. Similarly, blood levels of bone markers suggested increased bone formation in the treatment group, and increased bone degradation in the placebo group.
The authors say there is insufficient knowledge about which type of collagen peptides (marine, porcine, bovine etc) exerts the most favorable effect. The manufacturing process could also influence the properties of collagen peptides and thus their effectiveness. More human studies and additional data on optimal timing and dosage are needed.
(Specific Collagen Peptides Improve Bone Mineral Density and Bone Markers in Postmenopausal Women—A Randomized Controlled Study. Nutrients Journal, online 16 January 2018.)