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Dried plums, also called prunes, seem to be really good for bones. Researchers from Florida State and Oklahoma State universities tested two fruits, dried plums and dried apples, on two groups of postmenopausal women.
For a year, one group of 55 women ate about 10 prunes per day while a second group of 45 women ate 100 grams (about 3.5 ounces) of dried apples daily. All participants took 500 mg of calcium and 400 IU of vitamin D daily during the study. Afterwards, the women who ate the prunes had significantly higher bone mineral density in the spine and the ulna (one of two long bones in the forearm) than the women who ate the dried apples.
The researchers said the difference was due in part to the ability of the nutrients in prunes to suppress the rate of bone breakdown, which tends to exceed the rate of new bone growth as we age. The study was published in the British Journal of Nutrition.