High level of serum carotenoid is associated with increased bone mineral density in Chinese adults

Women are generally at higher risk of losing bone mass as they have smaller bones compared with men

A cross-sectional study reveals that a high concentration of serum carotenoids is positively correlated to higher bone mineral density (BMD) in middle-aged and elderly Chinese adults, especially in women.

In this large study, 1898 women and 933 men aged 50–75 years were recruited and the follow-up study was done after a mean interval of 3.1 years. The individual analysis of serum alpha-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin, lycopene, zeaxanthin and lutein was analysed by HPLC. Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry was used to determine the bone mineral density (BMD) at whole body, lumbar spine, total hip and femur regions (neck and trochanter).

The results demonstrate that high levels of alpha-carotene, lycopene and beta-cryptoxanthin are associated with increased BMD at most skeletal sites in women. Additionally, a higher alpha-carotene level is significantly associated with a higher BMD in total hip and its sub-regions. In fact, when comparing the lowest and highest quartile of alpha-carotene in women, the percentage differences of mean BMD values are 2.3% for both total hip and femur neck, 2.7% and 2.4% for femur regions (trochanter and intertrochanter, respectively).

By contrast, in men, only high serum alpha-carotene levels were associated with increased BMD at all sites except for lumbar spine. And when comparing to the lowest quartile in men, the mean BMDs in the highest quartile of alpha-carotene is 2.6 - 4.0% higher. However, interestingly, serum lutein and zeaxanthin show no significant association with BMD in either sex.

‘Women are generally at higher risk of losing bone mass as they have smaller bones compared with men. In addition, the level of oestrogen in women reduces significantly when they reach menopause. Based on the results, it is suggested that the increased intake of mixed carotenoids with a high content of alpha-carotene benefit both women and men, especially women who are more prone to bone mass loss,’ says CheeYen Lau, Nutritionist at ExcelVite.

‘EVTene is a natural palm mixed carotenoids supplement that contains the highest concentration of alpha-carotene among all commercial carotenoids products. The high content of alpha-carotene, together with the wholesome array of multi carotenoids in EVTene, may contribute to strengthening of the bones. Another interesting and unique attribute of EVTene is that its carotenoid composition mirrors that of carrots. No other commercial source of carotene has such a composition, making EVTene the only true mixed or multi-carotenoid product in the market,’ says Bryan See, Regional Product Manager, ExcelVite.

‘EVTene is available in various forms for a variety of applications, such as softgels, capsules, tablets and powdered drinks. Hence, it can be combined with other bone protective ingredients to develop a novel combination for bone health,’ he added.