Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Vegan Buddhist Nuns Have Same Bone Density As Non-vegetarians

Date:
April 17, 2009
Source:
Garvan Institute
Summary:
A study comparing the bone health of 105 post-menopausal vegan Buddhist nuns and 105 non-vegetarian women, matched in every other physical respect, has produced a surprising result. Their bone density was identical.

Buddhist nuns in Ho Chi Minh City.
Credit: Image courtesy of Garvan Institute

A study comparing the bone health of 105 post-menopausal vegan Buddhist nuns and 105 non-vegetarian women, matched in every other physical respect, has produced a surprising result. Their bone density was identical.

Related Articles


The study was led by Professor Tuan Nguyen from Sydney’s Garvan Institute of Medical Research. He collaborated with Dr Ho-Pham Thuc Lan from the Pham Ngoc Thach Medical University in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Their findings are now published online in Osteoporosis International.

“For the 5% of people in Western countries who choose to be vegetarians, this is very good news,” said Professor Nguyen. “Even vegans, who eat only plant-based foods, appear to have bones as healthy as everyone else.”

“Bone health in vegetarians, particularly vegans, has been a concern for some time, because as a group they tend to have a lower protein and calcium intake than the population at large.”

“In this work we showed that although the vegans studied do indeed have lower protein and calcium intakes, their bone density is virtually identical to that of people who eat a wide variety of foods, including animal protein.”

“The nuns’ calcium intake was very low, only about 370 mg a day, where the recommended level is 1,000 mg. Their protein intake was also very low at around 35 g a day, compared with the non-vegetarian group, which was 65 g.”

Professor Nguyen and Dr Thuc Lan chose to study Buddhist nuns because their faith requires them to observe strict vegan diets all their lives.

“We didn’t study vegetarians from the West because many are lacto-vegetarians, so could have considerable calcium in their diets. It would have compromised the results,” Nguyen explained.

“The Buddhist nuns came from 20 temples and monasteries in Ho Chi Minh City. The control group, 105 non-vegetarian women of exactly the same age, were recruited from the same localities.”

Although Professor Nguyen and Dr Thuc Lan do not advocate a vegan diet, they note that fruits and vegetables are likely to have positive effects on bone health.

They also note that the study did not measure Vitamin D levels  (as important to healthy bone as calcium) and factors such as lifestyle and physical activity. These variables may affect the outcomes for vegetarians elsewhere.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Garvan Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Garvan Institute. "Vegan Buddhist Nuns Have Same Bone Density As Non-vegetarians." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 April 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090416102302.htm>.
Garvan Institute. (2009, April 17). Vegan Buddhist Nuns Have Same Bone Density As Non-vegetarians. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 26, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090416102302.htm
Garvan Institute. "Vegan Buddhist Nuns Have Same Bone Density As Non-vegetarians." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090416102302.htm (accessed November 26, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) — The US FDA is announcing new calorie rules on Tuesday that will require everywhere from theaters to vending machines to include calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) — Need another reason to eat yogurt every day? Researchers now say it could reduce a person's risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Madagascar Working to Contain Plague Outbreak

Madagascar Working to Contain Plague Outbreak

AFP (Nov. 24, 2014) — Madagascar said Monday it is trying to contain an outbreak of plague -- similar to the Black Death that swept Medieval Europe -- that has killed 40 people and is spreading to the capital Antananarivo. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Are Female Bosses More Likely To Be Depressed?

Are Female Bosses More Likely To Be Depressed?

Newsy (Nov. 24, 2014) — A new study links greater authority with increased depressive symptoms among women in the workplace. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins