Nutritional supplementation of hop rho iso-alpha acids, berberine, vitamin D₃, and vitamin K₁ produces a favorable bone biomarker profile supporting healthy bone metabolism in postmenopausal women with metabolic syndrome

Nutr Res. 2011 May;31(5):347-55. doi: 10.1016/j.nutres.2011.03.016. Epub 2011 Apr 29.


Metabolic syndrome poses additional risk for postmenopausal women who are already at risk for osteoporosis. We hypothesized that a nutritional supplement containing anti-inflammatory phytochemicals and essential bone nutrients would produce a favorable bone biomarker profile in postmenopausal women with metabolic syndrome. In this 14-week, randomized trial, 51 women were instructed to consume a modified Mediterranean-style, low-glycemic-load diet and to engage in aerobic exercise. Those in the intervention arm (n = 25) additionally received 200 mg hop rho iso-alpha acids, 100 mg berberine sulfate trihydrate, 500 IU vitamin D₃, and 500 μg vitamin K₁ twice daily. Forty-five women completed the study. Baseline nutrient intake did not differ between arms. Compared with baseline, the intervention arm exhibited an approximate 25% mean decrease (P < .001) in serum osteocalcin (indicative of bone turnover), whereas the placebo arm exhibited a 21% increase (P = .003). Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D increased 23% (P = .001) in the intervention arm and decreased 12% (P = .03) in the placebo arm. The between-arm differences for osteocalcin and 25-hydroxyvitamin D were statistically significant. Serum insulin-like growth factor I was statistically increased in both arms, but the between-arm differences were not statistically significant. Subanalysis showed that among those in the highest tertile of baseline insulin-like growth factor I, the intervention arm exhibited a significant increase in amino-terminal propeptide of type I collagen, whereas the placebo arm showed a significant decrease at 14 weeks. Treatment with rho iso-alpha acids, berberine, vitamin D₃, and vitamin K₁ produced a more favorable bone biomarker profile indicative of healthy bone metabolism in postmenopausal women with metabolic syndrome.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / pharmacology
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use
  • Berberine / pharmacology
  • Berberine / therapeutic use
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Bone and Bones / drug effects*
  • Bone and Bones / metabolism
  • Cholecalciferol / pharmacology
  • Cholecalciferol / therapeutic use
  • Collagen Type I / blood
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Humulus
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I / metabolism
  • Metabolic Syndrome / blood
  • Metabolic Syndrome / complications*
  • Middle Aged
  • Osteocalcin / blood
  • Osteoporosis, Postmenopausal / blood
  • Osteoporosis, Postmenopausal / etiology
  • Osteoporosis, Postmenopausal / prevention & control*
  • Phytotherapy*
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use*
  • Single-Blind Method
  • Vitamin D / analogs & derivatives
  • Vitamin D / blood
  • Vitamin K 1 / pharmacology
  • Vitamin K 1 / therapeutic use
  • Vitamins / pharmacology
  • Vitamins / therapeutic use*


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Biomarkers
  • Collagen Type I
  • Plant Extracts
  • Vitamins
  • Berberine
  • Osteocalcin
  • Vitamin D
  • Cholecalciferol
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I
  • Vitamin K 1
  • 25-hydroxyvitamin D