During the menopause women may experience increased oxidative stress and decreased antioxidant capacity and, together with the decline of neurosteroids, this represents a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease. The aim of the present study was to test a functional food (FPP-ORI, Osato Research Institute, Gifu, Japan) on redox and mitochondrial efficiency in post-menopausal women.
The study population consisting of 69 untreated post-menopausal women were given supplements as follows: Group A was given a multivitamin (MV) 1c 2 times a day, and group B was given FPP 4.5 g 2 times a day. Group C consisted of 23 fertile premenopausal women as the control group. The tests carried out on entry, and at 3 and 6 months were erythrocyte redox parameters, plasma oxidated proteins, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) mitochondria cytochrome c oxidase Vmax activity. Menopausal women showed an increased malondialdehyde (MDA) (p<0.05 vs control) which was normalized by both treatments (p<0.05), but MV failed to do so in the BMI ≥26 subgroup (p<0.05).
All other redox enzymes and BDNF were significantly lower in menopausal women and they responded only to FPP (p<0.05). Carbonyl protein level was higher in “BMI ≥ 26” subgroup (p<0.05) and reduced only by FPP (p<0.05). The PBMC cyclooxygenase to citrate synthase activity was reduced (<40%) in the menopausal group (p<0.01) and only FPP caused a significant restoration (p<0.05). Although preliminary, these data confirm the redox and mitochondrial dysfunction occurring in post-menopause and responsive to FPP but very poorly to high dosage antioxidants.
This may lead to potential preventive opportunities in menopause-associated neurodegenerative disease.