According to recent research, women can lower their chance of developing a hip fracture by increasing their protein intake and regularly consuming tea or coffee. According to research conducted by food experts at the University of Leeds in the UK, women’s risk of hip fracture decreased by 14% on average with every additional 25g of protein consumed daily. They also unexpectedly found that each additional cup of tea or coffee they consumed was associated with a 4% decrease in risk.
The preventive advantages were stronger for women who were underweight, with a 25g/day increase in protein cutting their risk by 45%, the researchers reported in the journal Clinical Nutrition.
For those who follow a plant-based diet, the protein can come from beans, nuts, or legumes. It can also come from meat, dairy products, or eggs. A steak or piece of salmon, together with three to four eggs, would each offer about 25g of protein. 17g of protein would be present in 100g of tofu.
A hip fracture occurred in little over 3% of the research group’s female participants.
An extensive observational analysis of more than 26,000 women served as the foundation for the inquiry, “Foods, nutrients, and hip fracture risk: A prospective study of middle-aged women.”
The researchers were able to pinpoint correlations between dietary elements and health since this was an observational study. They were unable to distinguish clear cause from clear effect.
The study’s principal investigator, James Webster, a doctorate researcher at Leeds’ School of Food Science and Nutrition, stated: “Hip fracture has tremendous consequences to people and society throughout the world.
Hip fracture frequently causes the onset of various chronic conditions, loss of independence, and early mortality. The NHS in the UK spends between £2 and $3 billion annually.
“Diet is a factor that people can modify to protect themselves by maintaining healthy bones and muscles. This study is one of the first to investigate relationships between food and nutrient intakes and risk of hip fracture, with hip fractures accurately identified through hospital records.
“The results highlight which aspects of diet may be useful tools in reducing hip fracture risk in women, with evidence of links between higher protein, tea and coffee intakes and a reduced risk.”
Proteins are the fundamental building blocks of life and are essential for maintaining healthy cells, tissues, and muscles as well as strong bones.
Some nutritional experts consider the 0.8g per kilogramme of bodyweight daily protein recommendation in the UK to be excessively low. According to the study, persons who consume more protein had a lower risk of hip fracture. However, very high protein consumption, defined as more than 2 to 3 g of protein per kg of body weight per day, might have detrimental consequences on health. These extremely high protein intake levels could not be investigated by the research.
“In the UK, most individuals eat an acceptable quantity of protein, but specific groups, such as vegetarians or vegans, need to verify that their protein intakes are high enough for optimal health,” said Professor Janet Cade, who directs Leeds’ Nutritional Epidemiology Group and oversaw the study.
Why risk reductions for overweight women may be larger
Reduced bone mineral density and muscle mass may be more prevalent in underweight women. By aiding in the establishment or restoration of bone and muscle health, increasing intakes of a number of foods and minerals, particularly protein, may help lower the risk of hip fracture more in underweight women than in healthy or overweight women. The researchers point out that more study is necessary to corroborate this conclusion.
Tea and coffee both contain biologically active compounds called polyphenols and phytoestrogens which may help to maintain bone health.
Professor Cade added: “This is an interesting finding given that tea and coffee are the UK’s favourite drinks. We still need to know more about how these drinks could affect bone health but it might be through promoting the amount of calcium present in our bones.”