Protective effect of virgin coconut oil on bone loss in oestrogen deficient rats (#480)
In postmenopausal women, oxidative stress has been associated with osteoporotic bone loss that ensues as a consequent of estrogen deficiency. The damaging effects of free radical activities can be mitigated by consuming dietary antioxidants. Virgin coconut oil (VCO) is different from the ordinary coconut oil as the former is obtained without the use of heat or chemical, thus retaining most of the antioxidant compounds. The present study was undertaken to determine the effects of VCO on bone microarchitecture and oxidative status in ovariectomized rats, a widely accepted animal model for postmenopausal osteoporosis. Three-month-old female rats were randomly grouped into baseline, sham-operated, ovariectomized control, and ovariectomized rats fed with 8% VCO in their diet for six weeks. At necropsy, the right femora were removed for bone histomorphometry study. Malondialdehyde (MDA) and glutathione peroxidase (GPX) enzyme were measured from the left tibia to assess the oxidative stress and the endogenous antioxidant enzyme respectively. The results showed that ovariectomized rats supplemented with VCO had greater bone volume and trabecular number than the ovariectomized control rats. The control rats had a high MDA with a corresponding low level of GPX. Supplementation with VCO was able to reduce the MDA level as well as increased the GPX enzyme. In conclusion, dietary supplementation with VCO was effective in reducing oxidative stress and maintaining bone structure associated with oestrogen deficiency.