bonolive support women health

Everything you need to know about Bonolive® and women's health

Everything you need to know about Bonolive® and women’s health

Maastricht, 29th March, 2024

bonolive women health oleuropein

How do we define women’s health?

Woman’s health encompasses a range of physical, emotional, and mental aspects. Good health allows women to engage in daily activities with ease and vitality. It enables them to pursue their goals, whether personal or professional, without being limited by health issues. Hence, women’s quality of life is largely dependent on their health and mental status (1, 2).

A pivotal milestone in a woman’s life is the menopause, primarily characterized by hormonal fluctuations, particularly a decrease in oestrogen levels. This hormonal imbalance may have implications for women’s physical and mental health. However, with proper support and a holistic approach, the individual needs of each woman can be catered for.

How can we support women’s health (particularly during menopause)?

Women’s quality of life benefits from a holistic approach, including a comprehensive and integrated plan that addresses physical, mental, emotional, and social aspects of well-being (3). The top 3 strategies to support women’s health are listed below:

  1. Nutrition: Encouraging a balanced and nutritious diet is fundamental to women’s health. Emphasize whole foods, plenty of fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, healthy fats, and whole grains. Proper nutrition supports hormone balance, bone health, immune function, and overall vitality (4).
  2. Regular Exercise: Physical activity is essential for maintaining a healthy weight, reducing the risk of chronic diseases, improving mood, and enhancing overall well-being (5). It is advisable for women to engage in regular exercise that they enjoy, whether it’s walking, swimming, yoga, or strength training.
  3. Stress Management: Chronic stress can negatively impact women’s health. Teach stress management techniques such as mindfulness meditation, deep breathing exercises, yoga, or progressive muscle relaxation. Encouraging women to prioritize self-care activities would help them relax and unwind.

Exploring nutritional solutions for women’s health

As explained above, nutrition is a top priority to maintain and support health status. If we zoom in on women’s needs during peri- and post-menopause, we can explore in more detail what are the micronutrients that could provide a benefit during this stage of life. Typically, menopause is accompanied by acute symptoms such as bloating, night sweats, hot flashes, and long-term ones like loss of bone mineral density or imbalance in blood lipid profile.

Fortunately, there are quite a few nutritional strategies to explore in terms of lowering the risk of the above-mentioned conditions (6). For example, the sufficient intake of omega 3 and 6 fatty acids (7) is important for lipids metabolism as well as skin health. Furthermore, vitamin D (8) contributes to mineral turnover and bone health. In addition, olive polyphenols like oleuropein have great potential to support women in menopause by lowering the risk of bone loss and alleviating joint pain (9, 10).

What is oleuropein?

Oleuropein is the primary polyphenol found in olives and olive leaves (11). It contributes to the bitter taste of olives, especially the unripe ones. This compound has gained recent attention due to its potential health benefits for the human body such as anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties (12). Research suggests that it could support cardiovascular health by improving blood lipid levels. Oleuropein is also studied for its potential to aid bone health and skin health as it may reduce chronic inflammation. Moreover, Solabia Nutrition is the pioneer in research innovations with oleuropein and it is now under investigation for supporting women’s health, especially during and post-menopause.


How can oleuropein support women’s health?

Oleuropein may offer several potential benefits for women’s health during various stages of life, including menopause. Here’s how oleuropein can support women’s health:

  • Bone Health: During menopause, women are at an increased risk of osteoporosis due to declining estrogen levels. Oleuropein has been shown to promote bone health by stimulating osteoblast activity (cells responsible for bone formation) and inhibiting osteoclast activity (cells responsible for bone resorption) (13). By supporting bone density and strength, oleuropein may help reduce the risk of osteoporosis and fractures in postmenopausal women.
  • Cardiovascular Health: Cardiovascular risk increases after menopause, partly due to changes in hormone levels. Oleuropein has been found to have cardioprotective effects, including lowering blood pressure, reducing LDL cholesterol levels, and improving endothelial function (the function of blood vessel lining) (14). These benefits may help support heart health in women, particularly postmenopausal women.
  • Anti-inflammatory Effects: Menopause is associated with increased inflammation in the body, which may contribute to various health issues such as joint pain, cardiovascular complications, and cognitive decline. Oleuropein has potent anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce inflammation and oxidative stress, potentially alleviating symptoms and reducing the risk of chronic diseases associated with inflammation.
  • Immune Support: The immune system can undergo changes during menopause, potentially leading to increased susceptibility to infections and immune-related conditions. Oleuropein exhibits antimicrobial properties and may help support immune function by inhibiting the growth of bacteria, viruses, and fungi (14). By bolstering the immune system, oleuropein may contribute to maintaining women’s health and resilience to infections.
  • Hormonal Balance: Although more research is needed, some studies suggest that oleuropein may potentially help alleviate menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes, mood swings, and skin dryness by modulating hormone levels.
  • Skin Health: oleuropein holds promise in lowering skin inflammation and supporting skin hydration due to its moisturising and antimicrobial properties (14, 15). vigorous research is currently ongoing in this area, as technological advancements allow for accurate monitoring of improvements in skin health parameters.

Is oleuropein scientifically proven to support women?

There are numerous clinical studies assessing the effects of oleuropein. However, BioActor is the first and only to design clinical studies in the context of women’s health. Three publications in international peer-reviewed journals are testimony of BioActor’s trailblazing research for women’s health. So far, oleuropein emerged as a promising ingredient to support women peri- and post-menopause.

  1. Firstly, a 12-month oleuropein intake resulted in a significant increase in osteocalcin, a marker for bone formation (12). The intervention group also maintained bone mineral density. Additional outcomes were the significant reduction in LDL-cholesterol and total triglycerides in the intervention group, compared to placebo.
  2. Secondly, pain during walking was significantly decreased after 6 months intervention compared to baseline (16). Importantly, oleuropein intake was well tolerated, therefore it may be considered for long-term intake to relieve joint discomfort and improve mobility.
  3. Moreover, postmenopausal women exhibited elevated blood plasma concentrations of Bonolive® metabolites. These findings suggest that the bioavailability of Bonolive® is particularly high in post-menopausal women compared to pre-menopausal women (17). Moreover, MDA a marker for antioxidant status significantly improved in post-menopausal women.

Overall, oleuropein has already shown excellent potential in supporting women’s health and menopause concerns. Therefore, our research group continues to investigate the effects of this ingredient on factors related to women’s health and menopause.


What is Bonolive®?

Bonolive® is Solabia Nutrition’s patented olive leaf extract standardized for high levels of oleuropein. This all-natural ingredient is clinically validated in post-menopausal women to support women’s health during post-menopause, notably by:

  • Enhancing the number and activity of bone-producing cells (osteoblasts)
  • Stabilizing bone mineral density (18)
  • Improving blood lipids/lowering bad cholesterol
  • Improving mobility/reducing joint pain
  • Alleviating menopause symptoms related to mood and skin appearance (19, 20).


The history of Bonolive®

It all started with the breakthrough research of Professor Veronique Coxam on the bone protective properties of oleuropein at the French research institute INRA. Her colleague Marie-Noelle Horcajada continued working on the joint health benefits of Bonolive® at Nestlé Health Science. In parallel, BioActor’s CSO, Dr Yala Stevens and principal scientist Maria Imperatrice have been spearheading the research on Bonolive’s bioavailability and peri-menopause-related effects. More than 150 women took part in our studies as volunteers.


How are the olive leaves sourced?

Olive leaves provide the oleuropein present in Bonolive®. The olive plantation that provides the leaves for Bonolive® is situated near Cordoba, Spain. During the pruning season, the fresh leaves are collected and stored in a special environment to preserve the oleuropein content for extraction. This is an upcycling process, with the olive leaves being a clean and environmentally friendly source of oleuropein for Bonolive®.

Who can benefit from taking Bonolive®?

Bonolive® is a high-quality, 100% clean and scientifically backed ingredient, designed for women by women. Bonolive® targets specifically women in peri- and post-menopause, who need tailored support throughout this important life stage (21). Our latest consumer study suggests that women experiencing acute symptoms such as hot flashes, mood swings, and night sweats may notice improvements after just two weeks of use (22).

Easy formulation options with Bonolive®

Bonolive® is a great addition to any product formulation targeting women’s health, specifically menopause concerns. It has a convenient clinically validated dose of 250 mg which fits quite well in capsules. This ingredient is also lipids- and water soluble and can be formulated into softgels, effervescent tablets or beverages. It is also suitable for direct compression in the form of tablets.

Current products on the market often combine Bonolive® with other minerals, vitamins and botanicals suitable to support women’s health such as calcium, magnesium, iron, vitamins B, C & D etc. Our team can also offer formulation advice and guidance according to your specific projects.


Bonolive® is a safe solution for menopause support

Moreover, Bonolive® is well tolerated and suitable for long-term consumption to support menopausal women. Bonolive does not contain oestrogens, as opposed to isoflavones. BioActor commissioned extensive safety studies with Bonolive that have been published in a peer-reviewed journal. Recently, the US FDA approved the GRAS status of Bonolive for inclusion in functional foods and beverages, further affirming its high quality and safety standards.


Nutritional strategies to relieve menopause symptoms

Nutritional strategies to relieve menopause symptoms

Last updated: March 22nd, 2024

March 16th, 2023

During and after menopause, many women experience uncomfortable symptoms such as bloating, hot flashes, and night sweats. While hormonal therapy can help alleviate symptoms, it may also have side effects. Therefore, more attention is being given to changes in diet or the use of natural supplements. This article will explore nutritional strategies that may provide relief from menopause symptoms.


Foods to alleviate menopause symptoms

As women approach menopause, a lot of changes occur. Their estrogen levels decrease, leading to various symptoms such as bloating, night sweats, anxiety, or depression.

Menopause can also increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases and bone loss, which are commonly ignored. However, making some dietary changes can be an effective and easy way to alleviate these symptoms. In this article, we will discuss five foods that can help ease menopause symptoms.

1. Fish rich in n-3 PUFAs for menopause support

Fish is a great source of healthy and essential fatty acids, including omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs) that have protective effects and anti-inflammatory actions. These fatty acids are found in fatty fish like salmon and some algae species.

Research has shown that consuming fish or fish oil can reduce depression, anxiety (1), hot flashes, and sleeping problems (2) in menopausal women. In addition, fatty fish is rich in vitamin D, which is essential for calcium absorption and maintaining bone health.

If you don’t eat fish, you can still get the benefits of n-3 PUFAs by consuming foods rich in α-linoleic acid (ALA), which our bodies can convert into these beneficial fatty acids. ALA has been shown to improve skin hydration and smoothness and can be found in foods like flaxseeds, almonds, walnuts, and chia seeds (1), as well as soy products that we’ll discuss later.

2. Olive leaf extract for menopausal symptoms

Olives contain (poly)phenolic compounds that have many positive effects, including antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anticancer properties (3).

Interestingly, olive leaves contain significantly higher concentrations of phenolic compounds than olives or olive oil (4). As a result, they may have even greater potential for exerting beneficial effects on health. In fact, research has already demonstrated that taking olive leaf extract daily can be an effective alternative treatment for reducing blood pressure in individuals with hypertension (5).

One of the key phenolic compounds found in olive leaf extract is oleuropein, which has been shown to significantly impact women’s health during post-menopause. Oleuropein has been proven to reduce cholesterol levels, lower the risk of bone loss, alleviate joint pain, improve skin health and enhance mobility (6,7).

Bonolive® is an olive leaf product that is standardized for high levels of oleuropein.

3. Soy products

Soy products, including soy milk, soybeans, and tofu, are rich in isoflavones, which are plant-derived estrogens and selective modulators of estrogen receptors in the body. These properties make soy products a promising alternative to hormonal therapy.

Soybeans contain essential fatty acids, such as ALA (α-linoleic acid), that have anti-inflammatory properties. Additionally, soy protein has been found to reduce bad cholesterol levels, which can lower the risk of cardiovascular diseases (8).

One of the isoflavones found in soybeans is genistein, which is structurally similar to female estrogen and can alleviate menopausal hot flashes. Another isoflavone, daidzein, can inhibit cell proliferation in the gastrointestinal tract, potentially reducing the risk of estrogen-sensitive cancers, such as ovary, prostate, and breast cancer (9).

4. Yogurt to support menopause

Yogurt is a nutrient-rich food that contains calcium and vitamin D, which are important ingredients to improve bone health during menopause. Bifidobacterium bifidum and Lactobacillus acidophilus, which are considered ‘good’ bacteria, are used to make yoghurt and they are also present in the final product, making yogurt a source of probiotics that can benefit gut health.

Research has shown that consuming extra probiotics in yogurt can help to reduce anxiety and stress levels, and improve overall quality of life compared to regular yogurt (10). However, regular yogurt also has similar long-term effects. Additionally, yogurt may have a role in appetite control, making it a helpful food for weight management (11).

Studies have suggested that a well-balanced diet that includes milk and dairy products, like yogurt, may also improve sleep quality (12).

How can foods help with menopause symptoms?

To summarize, consuming fish, soy products, whole grains, olive leaf extract, and yogurt can promote healthy cholesterol levels, maintain bone mass, reduce menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes and mood swings, and help regulate appetite and blood sugar levels. If you’re experiencing menopausal symptoms, these natural products are worth considering.

WEBINAR (french)- Women's Health EU Market

WEBINAR in french – Women’s Health EU market

European Women’s health market, clinical data and product concepts with Bonolive® to support women during menopause.

Webinar: 7th November 2023 – 15:00 CEWT

More than ever, nutrition and supplementation are recognized to be effective strategies to address women’s health. Watch our latest webinar to learn more about the EU market for women’s health supplements, clinical evidence supporting Bonolive®, and product formulations. Watch now on demand!


The European Women’s Health market is growing. Join our webinar to explore evolving trends with a focus on France, address needs across ages, and uncover recent developments. Experts will discuss key factors shaping women’s health, providing insights for global advancement.

Menopause is an important stage of every women’s life. It brings unique challenges due to hormonal changes. From short-term concerns like hot flashes to long-term risks like cardiovascular issues and bone loss , nutrition and supplementation are crucial for support.

Discover Bonolive® and how BioActor’s olive polyphenol-based ingredient supports women during peri- and post-menopause!

What are you going to learn during this webinar?

European Women’s Health Market & Trends in France

Presentation by Aurore de Monclin from the Healthy Marketing Team, who is going to talk about the present state of the European Women’s Health market, the key considerations for women belonging to various age groups, and the trends within the french market.
Duration: 10 minutes

Clinical Research

Presentation provided by Maria Imperatrice – our in house clinical researcher, and presented by Billie Icheva – our Marketing Officer. You will be introduced to the science behind Bonolive® and the clinical trials showing the positive effect of Bonolive® on cardiovascular health, bone health and mobility.
Duration: 10 minutes

Formulating with Bonolive®

Presentation by Tony Payet– Sales Manager Europe, who will dive into Bonolive® mode of action, a new consumer study on its effect and product formulation examples related to women’s health.
Duration: 10 minutes

Q&A session

Duration:  5 minutes


Bonolive for your women's health product

5 reasons to use Bonolive® in your women’s health product

5 reasons to use Bonolive® in your women’s health product

September 5th, 2023

Bonolive® is an extract based on olive polyphenols that contains a high amount of oleuropein, a potent phytonutrient found primarily in olive trees. Numerous studies have demonstrated the beneficial properties of Bonolive®, including mitigation of potential risks associated with menopause. In this blog, we will explore some of the scientific evidence supporting the health benefits of olive polyphenols and why you should use it in your women’s health product.

Bonolive for your women's health product

Bonolive®: Mediterranean support for women’s health

Bonolive® is a natural compound sourced from olive leaves. It’s standardized to contain high levels of olive polyphenols, specifically Oleuropein.

Developed by BioActor, its primary aim is to support women’s health during the post-menopausal phase (1). This period often introduces various health challenges, such as decreased bone density, joint discomfort, and a heightened risk of cardiovascular problems.

Numerous clinical studies consistently highlight the positive effects of supplementing with Bonolive® (1 , 2 , 3). These studies have revealed that Bonolive® plays a role in enhancing bone strength, reducing joint discomfort, balancing lipid profiles, and easing specific menopause-related symptoms.

Consequently, it contributes to lowering the risk of developing conditions like osteoporosis (brittle bones) and heart issues as time progresses.

Oleuropein: the hero compound of Bonolive®

Olive oil plays a pivotal role in the Mediterranean diet (4). The primary polyphenols in olive oil are oleuropein and its metabolite hydroxytyrosol. These polyphenols have been extensively studied and recognized for their preventive benefits against various disorders.

Researchers have unraveled their mechanisms, showing promise in reducing the risks of breast cancer, ovarian cancer, postmenopausal osteoporosis, and other health issues.

Bonolive® is standardized to contain oleuropein. Because of this, Bonolive® is a perfect match for adding to dietary supplements and functional beverages made to support women’s health during menopause.

5 reasons to use Bonolive® in your women’s health product

1. Bonolive® improves bone health and reduces joint discomfort

Bonolive® has demonstrated its positive influence on bone and joint health (1). An investigation centered on post-menopausal women with reduced bone mass unveiled a notable surge in a foundational protein that serves as the framework for generating new bone. Moreover, an improvement in bone mineral density was seen.

In a recent six-month study involving 124 participants aged 55 and above, the efficacy of Bonolive® came to light. It brought relief to joint discomfort linked to activities like walking, bending, and knee movement (2).

Consequently, a daily dosage of 250 mg of Bonolive® proves sufficient to deliver advantageous outcomes for both bone and joint well-being.

2. Bonolive® reduces menopause-related symptoms

BioActor undertook a consumer study aimed at assessing the benefits of Bonolive® among post-menopausal women. This investigation unveiled the favorable influence of Bonolive® on alleviating menopause-related symptoms in this demographic.

The study focused on women who had already gone through menopause, aiming to see how Bonolive® affected their reported symptoms. For 28 days, participants took Bonolive® regularly. After just 14 days, they felt better in terms of bloating, anxiety, mood swings, energy levels, and skin health. This improvement continued even after the full 28 days of using Bonolive®.

This reinforces the potential of Bonolive® in enhancing the well-being of post-menopausal women.

3. Bonolive® has favorable effects on lipid control

Clinical research has shown the favorable impacts of Bonolive® in managing the blood lipid profile among post-menopausal women (1). Notably, supplementation with 250mg of Bonolive® over a 12-month period led to significant improvements. Specifically, a significant reduction in LDL-cholesterol, total cholesterol, and triglycerides was observed.

4. Bonolive® has a superior bioavailability

Another study aimed to assess the bioavailability of Bonolive®. Interestingly, a more substantial increase in the levels of metabolites in the blood of post-menopausal women was observed compared to women who hadn’t gone through menopause yet. This suggests that post-menopausal women experienced higher absorption of Bonolive®.

Additionally, the study revealed that Bonolive® possesses antioxidant effects, as evidenced by its ability to reduce levels of a substance called MDA, which is a marker of oxidative stress.

5. Bonolive® is a sustainable solution

Olive trees hold the distinction of being among the oldest cultivated trees globally. However, the surge in olive oil production has taken a toll on the environment (5).

The primary waste generated during olive growth is the pruned leaves of the olive trees. Yet, these leaves contain valuable compounds of which oleuropein is one. This is why Bonolive® is made from freshly cut olive leaves, meaning it is a clean, sustainable and natural ingredient for a women’s health product.

Bonolive®: A key ingredient for women’s health

Studies have found that Bonolive® can help women stay healthy after menopause. Using Bonolive® as an olive polyphenol extract can bring big benefits to women’s health products. Bonolive® can be used in many different products and has lots of advantages. It’s a great ingredient to promote a healthier lifestyle and improve women’s well-being.

Curious to read about the clinical studies on Bonolive® in more detail? Download our white paper below!

WEBINAR - Women's Health

WEBINAR – Women’s Health

Women’s health market, clinical data and product concepts with Bonolive® to address post-menopausal-related risks

Webinar: September 26th 2023 at 9AM PDT | 12PM EDT | 6PM CEST.

More than ever, nutrition and supplementation are recognized to be effective strategies to address women’s health. Join us in our next webinar to learn more about the market for women’s health supplements, clinical evidence supporting Bonolive®, and product formulations to target post-menopausal-related risks. Watch now on demand!


The Women’s Health market is a very dynamic one. Join our webinar to explore evolving trends, address needs across ages, and uncover recent developments. Experts will discuss key factors shaping women’s health, providing insights for global advancement.

Menopause is an important women’s health topic. It brings unique challenges due to hormonal changes. From short-term concerns like hot flashes to long-term risks like cardiovascular issues and bone loss, nutrition and supplementation are crucial for support.

Discover Bonolive® and how BioActor’s olive polyphenol-based ingredient enhances women’s health in our upcoming webinar.

Meet the Speakers:

What are you going to learn during this webinar?

Women’s Health Market & Trends

Presentation by Marit Veenstra – Operations Manager & Brand Strategist, who is going to talk about the present state of the Women’s Health market, the key considerations for women belonging to various age groups, and the trends within the market.
Duration: 10 minutes

Clinical Research

Presentation by Maria Imperatrice – Clinical researcher, who will introduce the science behind Bonolive® and the clinical trials showing the positive effect of Bonolive® on cardiovascular health, bone health and mobility.
Duration: 15 minutes

Formulating with Bonolive®

Presentation by Valeria Mastromartino – Account Manager, who will dive into Bonolive® mode of action, a new consumer study on its effect and product formulation examples risks related to women’s health.
Duration: 15 minutes

Q&A session

Duration: 10 minutes


From tree to health support uncovering the benefits of olives, olive leaf and olive oil

From tree to health support: uncovering the benefits of olives, olive leaf and olive oil

From tree to health: uncovering the benefits of olives, olive leaf and olive oil

July 25th, 2023

Delve into the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet, centering on olives and extra virgin olive oil. Uncover the positive effects of oleuropein, particularly for women during and after menopause, providing natural support for overall well-being.

From tree to health support uncovering the benefits of olives, olive leaf and olive oil

The Mediterranean diet has gained widespread recognition as one of the healthiest diets globally, known for its ability to prevent diseases like heart disease and cancer.

Key components of this diet include olives and extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), which are celebrated for their health benefits.

In this article, we will delve into the composition of olives and EVOO, exploring the various health benefits associated with their consumption. Moreover, we will focus on their potential advantages for women facing post-menopausal concerns, shedding light on the natural alternatives available to alleviate their symptoms.

Olives and extra virgin olive oil: Pillars of Mediterranean health

The Mediterranean diet revolves around plant-based foods, whole grains, nuts, herbs, and spices. It encourages moderate consumption of fish, seafood, and poultry, while red meat and sugar are consumed infrequently. The main source of added fat in this diet is EVOO, which stands out for its numerous health benefits (1).

Composition of extra virgin olive oil

EVOO is derived from freshly cold-pressed olives, the fruits of the olive tree (Olea europaea). This process ensures that the beneficial components of EVOO, known as biophenols, are preserved.

The primary fatty acids in EVOO are monounsaturates, particularly oleic acid, which constitutes 55-80% of the total fatty acid content. The remaining portion consists of small amounts of saturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids.

Beyond the fatty acids, EVOO contains various minor components such as antioxidants, including carotenoids, α-tocopherol, and phenol compounds. Among these phenols, the main ones found in EVOO are hydroxytyrosol, tyrosol, and oleuropein. Oleuropein, in particular, is present in olives, olive leaves, and olive oil, making oleuropein a key player in the health benefits associated with these products.

Oleuropein: a compound from olives and olive leaves with outstanding health benefits

Oleuropein, a compound with remarkable health benefits, has been extensively studied for its potential in preventing various disorders. As an antioxidant, it effectively combats harmful compounds in the body, reducing the risk of heart problems, cancer, osteoporosis, Alzheimer’s, and premenstrual syndrome, among others. Studies have demonstrated its ability to protect cells from oxidative damage, reducing the risk of chronic diseases and contributing to the prevention of inflammatory conditions (2, 3).

Furthermore, the cardiovascular benefits of oleuropein are noteworthy, as it supports heart health by reducing LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels and lowering blood pressure. These effects, in combination with its antioxidant properties, contribute to the prevention of cardiovascular diseases such as atherosclerosis.

Interestingly, while oleuropein is present in olive oil and olives, you might be surprised to learn that olive leaves contain even higher levels of this beneficial compound. This makes olive leaves a great source for obtaining oleuropein and reaping its healthful advantages (4).

An example of an olive leaf extract that has high levels of oleuropein is Bonolive®.

Women’s health: how can it benefit from olives?

Postmenopausal women often experience symptoms such as fatigue, anxiety, and mood swings. The global population of postmenopausal women has grown significantly, leading to increased research on natural alternatives to alleviate these symptoms (5).

Oleuropein’s ability to lower blood pressure may be beneficial for women with hypertension during menopause. High blood pressure is a common concern during this stage of life, and the consumption of EVOO as part of the Mediterranean diet could help manage this condition naturally (6).

Oleuropein’s antioxidant properties are also relevant to women’s health. Oxidative stress is a contributing factor to the development of various diseases, and antioxidants like oleuropein help counteract this stress, promoting overall well-being.

Recent studies have also shown that oleuropein has positive effects on bone health, which further enhances its impact on women’s health, especially during and after menopause.

Osteoporosis, a condition characterized by reduced bone density and an increased risk of fractures, is a significant concern for postmenopausal women due to hormonal changes and declining estrogen levels. The anti-inflammatory properties of oleuropein play a crucial role in reducing bone loss and inflammation, helping to maintain bone strength and integrity.

By including the Mediterranean diet with its oleuropein-rich olives and EVOO, women can potentially safeguard their bone health and mitigate the risks associated with osteoporosis. This contributes to an overall improvement in their well-being during the post-menopausal stage.

Oleuropein and women’s health: the benefits of olives and olive leaf

The Mediterranean diet, which includes olives and extra virgin olive oil, offers many health benefits, thanks to oleuropein: a compound that helps prevent diseases and promotes overall well-being, especially in women post-menopause.

For those who may have limited olives or olive oil in their regular diet, supplements containing high levels of oleuropein might be beneficial. Bonolive®, an ingredient by BioActor, is high in oleuropein content and has been extensively studied.

To read more about these studies, download our white paper below.


What is (peri)menopause and which changes occur?

What is (peri)menopause and which changes occur?

January 4th, 2023

Menopause leads to changes in women’s bodies and marks the end of the childbearing years. It involves hormonal changes that can lead to both physical and mental symptoms that are better known as menopause symptoms. Because menopause does not occur overnight, a distinction is made between the period called perimenopause and the period that comes after, namely (post)menopause. Each of these periods comes with its issues and symptoms.


What is menopause?

Menopause is marked by the moment that no menstruation has occurred for at least 12 months. This occurs on average when women are between 45 to 55 years of age. However, this varies from woman to woman and depends on multiple factors.

Entering menopause is not an immediate process and does not happen overnight: it is a process that can last for years (1). For this reason, we make a distinction between menopause and perimenopause.

What is perimenopause?

The explicit sign that menopause has started is the definitive cessation of menstruation. This does not occur suddenly, but after a long period of irregularity, which begins to manifest itself during perimenopause.

Perimenopause is the phase in which the first bodily changes related to menopause occur. These changes are evident signs of decreasing levels of estrogen and progesterone (2).

During perimenopause, estrogen deficiency occurs that can no longer be compensated by changes in ovarian hormone production. This decline in ovarian function is a characteristic trigger of natural menopause and because of it circulating estradiol levels will go down. This reduction in estradiol levels will prevent ovulation from happening, which is thought to be the reason for irregular menstruation.

Postmenopause is the period that begins after 12 consecutive months without menstruation. From this moment on the discomforts related to (peri)menopause will become lighter.

What are the symptoms of perimenopause?

The hormonal changes associated with menopause can affect physical, emotional, mental, and social well-being. The symptoms that are experienced during and after menopause vary greatly from one person to another.

While some women suffer few to no symptoms, others may experience severe symptoms affecting their daily activities and quality of life. In some cases, the symptoms may last for various years (3).

Symptoms of perimenopause

Symptoms that can occur during perimenopause include, but are not limited to:
Irregular menstruation cycle, this is a clear sign that hormones are starting to act up.

Menstruation that is heavier or lighter than normal, which indicates a change in hormonal balance

Weight gain and a general accentuation of roundness can become a very delicate aspect to manage, also from an emotional point of view.

Changes in hair quality, most women find that their hair loses volume and length around menopause.

Headaches, the hormone changes that happen as women approach menopause mean that all types of headaches, including migraines, become more common.

Muscle aches, estrogen affects your cartilage (which is the connective tissue in joints) as well as the replacement of bone, this plays a part in inflammation and pain.

Bone issues, though it is less noticeable, bone health diminishes during menopause. For this reason, a lot of products exist to improve bone health during (peri)menopause.

Symptoms of (post)menopause

As stated before, after perimenopause starts the actual menopause, which brings its own types of symptoms. These symptoms include:

Night sweats and hot flashes are one of the most typical effects of hormonal imbalance. Many women experience such a sudden rush of feeling hot.

Anxiety or irritability. There are a lot of physical changes during menopause, but emotional changes often occur as well. This happens because the drop in estrogen and progesterone leads to a decrease in the expression of several brain chemicals that make you feel calm, happy or energetic. This can cause women to feel anxious or irritable.

Mood swings also occur due to hormonal changes. Fluctuations in estrogen and progesterone lead to fluctuations in other brain chemicals as well, leading to these mood swings.

Depression is a symptom that can occur during both perimenopause and menopause and is more severe compared to anxiety, irritability or mood swings. Changes in hormones might put women more at risk for depression and this also falls under the emotional changes during menopause.

Insomnia. Overall studies show that women in menopause have more trouble with sleeping. These disturbances include difficulty getting to sleep, staying asleep, early morning wakenings and problems with the overall quality of sleep.

Fatigue and low energy are common effects that many women experience before, during, and after this transition time. This often is a result of the sleeping problems described before, but has to do with the previously mentioned ‘energetic’ chemicals in your brain as well.

Dry skin due to decreasing estrogen levels can become less supple, smooth, and soft. Fine wrinkles, dark spots, and less elasticity are usually not far behind.

Relieving symptoms of perimenopause and (post)menopause

Menopause is a period of hormonal changes marked by physical and emotional changes. A lot of people worry about this and it can be hard to experience these symptoms. For this reason, there are several ways to alleviate these symptoms. Of course, medicinal products are available, but natural ways to relieve symptoms exist as well. Changes in diet and physical activity could be a way to relieve symptoms associated with menopause.

You can read more about Bonolive®, a product that proves to relieve post-menopausal symptoms, and women’s health on this page.


Why is bone health important and how does it work? (functions, bone metabolism and influencing factors)

Why is bone health important and how does it work? (functions, bone metabolism and influencing factors)

July 4th, 2022

Our bones play various key functions for our bodies, and it is therefore important to maintain their health. To do so, it is essential to understand how our bones work and what factors affect bone health. Bone metabolism is a lifelong occurring process where bone tissue is turned over from mature to new bone tissue. This process keeps your bones healthy and their health is influenced by several aspects, such as age, gender, family history and several risk factors such as tobacco use, physical inactivity and diet.


Bone health, menopause, and dietary supplements

Menopause is the permanent cessation of menstruation naturally occurring in females at an average age of 51 [1].

Importantly, menopause leads to a decrease in estrogen levels and consequently increases bone loss. Estrogen is a hormone responsible for menstruation and known to have protective effects on bone loss and reduce inflammation.

Bone tissue in women is generally thinner than in men, and bone density has been reported to markedly decrease after menopause (post-menopause). Women can lose up to 20% of their bone density in just 5-7 years due to these hormonal shifts and experience increased joint pain [2].

The rise in use of dietary supplements, especially by post-menopausal women, who are at risk of bone loss, is growing tremendously as advances in research are made, and the benefits of multiple natural ingredients are proven [3]. For example, Bonolive®, an olive leaf extract that reduces menopausal symptoms.

How does bone metabolism work?

Bone metabolism, also known as bone remodelling, is a lifelong process where bone tissue is turned over from mature to new bone tissue. Bone resorption is the process where mature bone tissue is removed by osteoclasts and ossification is the formation of new bone tissue executed by osteoblasts [4]. These processes are responsible for replacing and reshaping bone following injuries such as fractures, but also micro-damage occurring during normal activity.

In the early stages of life, nearly 100% of the skeleton is replaced, due to the bones needing to develop, lengthen and grow. While in adults, bone remodelling proceeds at about 10% yearly [5].

For as long as bone growth is greater than bone breakdown, adults can maintain healthy bones. Many living cells within bone originate from the same mesenchymal stem cell. These mesenchymal stem cells can differentiate into the various cell types present in bone, such as osteoblasts (bone-building cells), adipocytes (fat cells) and chondrocytes (cartilage) [6].

However, due to stress, inflammation and ageing, this differentiation shifts towards producing more fat cells and fewer osteoblasts, resulting in more brittle and fatty bones [7]. Usually, bone mass starts to decline at the age of 40 as bone loss overtakes the speed of bone growth [8].

Fortunately, there are factors at play that we have control over to mitigate this bone loss.

What are the factors influencing bone health?

Although both our genes and the environment influence bone health, there is only one we have control over. Our genes, for example, determine whether signalling errors occur and lead to birth defects, while extrinsic factors, such as lifestyle and diet, are crucial for optimising and maintaining bone health. Bone loss, also referred to as osteoporosis, affects people of all different ages and backgrounds. However, other intrinsic factors that are out of our control include:

Age: naturally as we grow older, our bone mass and strength decrease. This is mainly due to decreased osteoblast activity and an increase in osteoblast apoptosis, while inflammation increases [9,10].

Gender: osteoporosis is four times more common in women than men [11].

Body frame size: people with small body frames tend to have a higher risk of bone loss as they have less bone mass to draw from as they age.

Family history: having a parent or sibling with osteoporosis puts you at greater risk.


Fortunately, however, we do have the ability to modify extrinsic factors such as physical activity, diet choices and lifestyle choices. Here is how they can disturb bone health:

Tobacco use: smoking contributes to weak bones by disturbing the balance of bone turnover negatively.

Physical inactivity: just like muscles, bones get stronger by exercising them. Resistance exercise and weight-bearing exercise help with this.

Alcohol use: alcohol interferes with the calcium balance and affects the production of hormones, linking chronic alcohol intake to an increase in bone fractures and falls.

Diet: foods high in calcium, and vitamin D such as dairy products and green leafy vegetables should be consumed in sufficient quantities to support the maintenance of bone health [12]. Additionally, polyphenols such as oleuropein can help mitigate bone loss, especially with age, through their anti-oxidative effects reducing inflammation [13].

If you want to know more about the crucial nutrients for bone health, click here and read our article on the 8 best ingredients.


8 Ingredients proven to improve bone health during (post)menopause

8 Ingredients proven to improve bone health during (post)menopause

June 13th, 2022

Bone health is crucial to maintain, particularly after menopause. Consumption of dietary supplements, especially in post-menopausal women is on the rise, as advances in research are made and proven benefits are elucidated. Here we mention some of the ingredients that have demonstrated the ability to support women during menopause – specifically for the loss and maintenance of bone mineral density! You will also learn about which foods contain these ingredients, how they are beneficial to bone health and their recommended daily intake.


Bone health, menopause, and dietary supplements

Menopause is the permanent cessation of menstruation naturally occurring in females at an average age of 51 [1].

Importantly, menopause leads to a decrease in estrogen levels and consequently increases bone loss. Estrogen is a hormone responsible for menstruation and known to have protective effects on bone loss and reduce inflammation.

Bone tissue in women is generally thinner than in men, and bone density has been reported to markedly decrease after menopause (post-menopause). Women can lose up to 20% of their bone density in just 5-7 years due to these hormonal shifts and experience increased joint pain [2].

The rise in use of dietary supplements, especially by post-menopausal women, who are at risk of bone loss, is growing tremendously as advances in research are made, and the benefits of multiple natural ingredients are proven [3].

8 ingredients to sustain bone health in menopause.

Calcium & Vitamin D

Calcium is a critical component of bone architecture necessary for the deposition of bone minerals. Around 99% of calcium is stored in bones and teeth, making them strong and hard [4].

Vitamin D is vital for regulating intestinal calcium absorption and stimulating bone resorption to maintain serum calcium concentration [5]. There are, however, substances that can interfere with the body’s ability to use calcium, such as oxalate, protein, phytate, and caffeine.

Examples of foods rich in calcium include dairy, soybeans, and green leafy vegetables. The predominant way of ascertaining vitamin D is through our own body’s synthesis stimulated by sufficient sunlight exposure on our skin. Thus, supplementation of vitamin D3, cholecalciferol, is advocated during autumn and winter due to limited sunlight availability, depending on geography.

Women under the age of 50 should consume a daily dosage of 1000mg of calcium and 400-800IU vitamin D, while women above the age of 50 should consume 1200mg of calcium and 800-1000IU of vitamin D daily [6].


Vitamin C, B9 and B12, K

Vitamin C is important in stimulating the differentiation of osteoblasts, cells that synthesize bone matrix and coordinate bone mineralization [7].

Antioxidant effects of vitamin C have also been reported to reduce bones from cell damage and may improve left ventricular diastolic function which menopausal women often experience a dramatic reduction in [8]. Foods rich in vitamin C include citrus fruits, bell peppers, broccoli, and strawberries.

Vitamin B9 (folate) and B12 are major determinants of homocysteine levels. Thus, a deficiency in vitamin B9 and B12 leads to increased homocysteine levels, which have been associated with impaired bone health and osteoporosis, a condition concerning weak and brittle bones [9].

Vitamin B9 and B12 have also been reported to assist with reducing the severity and duration of hot flashes and other menopause symptoms [10]. Therefore, increasing folate and B12 levels through foods such as pulses, legumes, beans, brown rice and, you guessed it, leafy green vegetables, can improve bone health.

Moreover, vitamin K has been reported to assist with reducing hot flashes and other menopause symptoms [11].

The recommended daily amount for adult women according to the National Institutes of Health for vitamin C is 75mg; for vitamin B9 is 400mcg DFE; for vitamin B12 is 2.4mcg and ultimately for vitamin K is 90mcg [12].


Quercetin is the bioactive compound abundantly found in citrus fruits, green leafy vegetables, and onions. Studies show that onions reduce bone loss due to their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant flavonoid, quercetin [13].

Quercetin inhibits the genesis and differentiation of osteoclasts, preserving bone mass and health. Bone mineral density in postmenopausal women has also been reported to improve when supplementing with onion juice [14].

Quercetin at a dose of 150 mg has been shown to improve bone health metrics, which is around three servings of onion [15]. Note, that quercetin is found in the pigment and outer layer of the onion, with red and yellow ones thus having higher concentrations.

Bonolive® (olive leaf extract 40% oleuropein)

Bonolive® is an ingredient derived from olive leaf and rich in the most abundant olive polyphenol, oleuropein, tailored to women to counteract bone loss risk associated with menopause.

Clinical research in post-menopausal women has demonstrated that 12 months of supplementation with 250mg of Bonolive® can increase osteocalcin levels by 32%, promote the activity of osteoblasts (the bone-building cells), and decrease osteoclast activity involved in the breakdown and resorption of bone [16,17]. Thus the clinical dosage of 250mg is recommended.

Moreover, after 12 months, the Bonolive® treatment group displayed significant protection against bone loss, compared to the placebo group.

Additionally, chondrocytes, important for cartilage-building, are also increased while cartilage degeneration is inhibited through oleuropein. Further benefits can be ascribed to oleuropein’s anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

Oleuropein can be found in olive oil and olive leaf, although in limited quantities. Therefore, supplementation with a high-quality, standardized extract such as Bonolive® is a more convenient method of consuming this nutrient in adequate quantities.

Improve bone health during menopause

In conclusion, a well-balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, together with the right supplementations may help ameliorate bone health during menopause and promote healthy ageing and active living.

Press release new publication on Bonolive BioActor

New clinical study on patented olive leaf extract Bonolive® shows joint health benefits

New clinical study on patented olive leaf extract Bonolive® shows joint health benefits

Maastricht, Netherlands, February 8th, 2022

Press release
Therapeutic Advances in Musculoskeletal Disease has recently published a new clinical study with Bonolive®, a patented bone and joint health ingredient based on olive polyphenol. The new publication suggests that Bonolive® may improve joint functional capacity and reduce knee pain.

Press release new publication on Bonolive BioActor

New randomized clinical trial published with Bonolive®

Bonolive® is a natural polyphenol extract from olive leaves, developed by BioActor. Bonolive® was already studied for bone protecting effects in post-menopausal women and is covered by a patent on the bone health application of the extract.

A recent randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial including 124 subjects demonstrated a large and significant treatment effect of Bonolive® in improving joint discomfort and reducing pain in subjects with knee pain.

Participants in the study received either a placebo or supplementation with a 125mg capsule containing Bonolive® (40% oleuropein), twice a day for 6 months.

The conclusion indicates that Bonolive® was able to improve the KOOS score (Knee Injury and Osteoarthritis Outcome) and to reduce walking pain in subjects with knee pain.

The researchers from the Liege University Hospital suggested that oleuropein may relieve nociceptive pain triggered by the mechanical strain because of its calcium channel blocker property.

N-type calcium channels are indeed important for neuronal excitability and play a role in pain genesis. As a blocker of these channels, Bonolive® seems to produce an antinociceptive effect, thus reducing pain.

These benefits were not associated with any adverse effect after 6 months of treatment, showing excellent tolerability of the extract. Moreover, the study confirmed yet again the great bioavailability of Bonolive®. The main metabolites of the extract, oleuropein aglycone, hydroxytyrosol and homovanillyl alcool were measured and showed a rapid rise in the urine of all treated subjects.

This study was conducted in the context of a collaboration with Nestlé Health Science, aiming to strengthen the scientific evidence for the benefits of Bonolive®.

“We are proud of the results achieved thanks to this collaboration”, says Hans van der Saag, CEO and founder of BioActor. “Mobility is extremely important for the quality of life and a core indicator of healthy ageing. These new scientific insights on Bonolive® will allow us to expand its applications to mobility targeting products”.

About BioActor

BioActor, based at the Maastricht Health Campus, Netherlands, is a life science company that has developed a range of proprietary bioactive ingredients for the nutrition & consumer health industries. The company focuses on the development of plant-based health ingredients for active living and healthy ageing. The goal is to provide the nutrition & consumer health industries with clinically tested innovations that confer a real health benefit to the consumer.

Feel free to contact BioActor via for more information on the possibilities Bonolive® has to offer.

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