OLIVE OIL could be good for the bones, according to a new study.

The research is part of a two year study at Madrid University and showed that people who consumed more olive oil had higher levels  of osteocalcin – a protein secreted by bone-forming cells. High levels of osteocalcin are a marker of strong bones.

One theory is that osteocalcin may help prevent insulin resistance, where the body becomes immune to the effects of the hormone, which has been linked to weaker bones.

This research follows another study from the University of Athens, which found a diet high in olive oil and low in red meat was linked to healthier bone density in women throughout adult life. The researchers say antioxidants may be responsible.

Indeed the  incidence of osteoporosis is lower in the Mediterranean, where the traditional diet is rich in olives and olive oil.