This Valentine’s Day, why not give your loved ones the gift of bone health and still be a traditional romantic?
Both a heart-shaped box of chocolate and a bottle of red wine contain Resveratrol, a compound known for its anti-inflammatory properties that are good for bone.
What’s even more to love
New research is giving us insight into the possible bone-protecting effects of Resveratrol on humans (many of the previous studies focused on animal models). Based on two Danish studies, it appears that Resveratrol may:
• Influence bone metabolism in humans
• Improve bone mineral density at the spine
• Elevate levels of the bone formation marker BAP
While the study used high-dose supplementation, you can still boost your Resveratrol intake with foods, including those listed in the box – which you’ll notice includes the wine and chocolate I mentioned earlier.
Now, I’m not suggesting you go out and drink as much merlot or eat as many death by chocolate bars you can find, but the bone benefits of chocolate and wine are good reminders that we should be careful about putting foods into “good” and “bad” categories. Plus, you’ll notice that blueberries — one of my super foods — is on the list as well.
Here’s a dark chocolate dipping recipe you can use with Resveratrol-filled berries:
For a hard chocolate shell simply melt dark chocolate chips in a double boiler until it is smooth and then dip berries or other kinds of fruit.
For a softer coating add 2-3 tablespoons of cream to 1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips. This will work for either dark or milk chocolate. If using white chocolate, add less cream.
With dark chocolate chips the chocolate may not seem sweet, but the berries will sweeten it up!
Does anyone have more good recipes using foods high in Resveratrol to share?
Ørnstrup MJ, et al. Resveratrol Increases Bone Mineral Density and Bone Alkaline Phosphatase in Obese Men: A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, October 2014 DOI: 10.1210/jc.2014
Ørnstrup MJ, Harsløf T, Kjær TN, Langdahl BL, Pedersen SB. Resveratrol increases bone mineral density and bone alkaline phosphatase in obese men: a randomized placebo-controlled trial. Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2014 Dec;99(12):4720-9. doi: 10.1210/jc.2014-2799. Date accessed 1/15/2015 (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25322274)
I’m Dr. Susan Brown. I am a nutritionist, medical anthropologist, writer, and speaker. Get my free weekly newsletter here.