EPA + DHA, but Especially EPA, Effective in Diabetic Rats with Osteopenia


Effect of eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid on diabetic osteopenia.

To evaluate the effect of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), which are polyunsaturated fatty acids, on diabetic osteopenia, we measured the bone fragility in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. The fragility of femur was increased in diabetic rats, which was prevented in part by EPA or DHA. Moreover, EPA prevented osteopenia even in diabetic rats fed a low zinc feed, which was a potent accelerator of diabetic osteopenia. Plasma alkaline phosphatase activity and parathyroid hormone level showed no difference between the two groups of diabetic rats with or without EPA. Urinary excretion of calcium and phosphate was increased and plasma inorganic phosphate level was high in diabetic rats, suggesting severe mineral loss. In diabetic rats fed EPA, although urinary and plasma calcium levels did not change significantly, urinary phosphate excretion and plasma inorganic phosphate concentration were slightly lowered, which suggested that EPA may have an effect in suppressing phosphate release from bones in diabetic rats. These data suggest that EPA and DHA could be effective on diabetic osteopenia, but to elucidate the precise mechanisms, further examinations will be needed.

Yamada Y, Fushimi H, Inoue T, Matsuyama Y…
Diabetes Res. Clin. Pract. Oct 1995
PMID: 8745204