Effect of alternate day fasting on markers of bone metabolism: An exploratory analysis of a 6-month randomized controlled trial.
BACKGROUND: Alternate day fasting (ADF) is a novel diet therapy that reduces body weight, but its effect on bone health remains unknown. OBJECTIVE: This study examined the impact of ADF versus traditional daily calorie restriction (CR) on markers of bone metabolism in a 6-month randomized controlled trial. METHODS: Overweight and obese subjects (n = 100) were randomized to 1 of 3 groups for 6 months: 1) ADF (25% energy intake fast day, alternated with 125% intake feast day; 2) CR (75% intake every day); or 3) control (usual intake every day). RESULTS: Body weight decreased similarly (P < 0.001) by ADF (-7.8±1.2%) and CR (-8.8±1.5%), relative to controls by month 6. Lean mass, total body bone mineral content and total body bone mineral density remained unchanged in all groups. Circulating osteocalcin, bone alkaline phosphatase, and C-terminal telopeptide type I collagen (CTX) did not change in any group. IGF-1 increased (P < 0.01) in the CR group, with no change in the ADF or control group. When the data were sub-analyzed according to menopausal status, there were no differences between premenopausal or postmenopausal women for any marker of bone metabolism. CONCLUSION: These findings suggest that 6 months of ADF does not have any deleterious impact on markers of bone metabolism in obese adults with moderate weight loss.