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High consumption of dairy foods 'lowers diabetes risk'


People who take eight or more portions of high-fat dairy produce each day are at a lower risk of developing diabetes than those who have only one portion a day, Swedish research shows.

A study of almost 27,000 people aged between 45 and 74, 60% of whom were female, showed that those who increased their intake of foods including cream and high-fat milk had a 23% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

While there was an increased risk with a greater intake of meats, that risk became higher for those who took meat containing less fat, according to the study by Dr Ulrika Ericson and her colleagues at the Lund University Diabetes Centre in Malmo.

Dr Ericson said the research, presented at this year’s annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes in Vienna, showed fats specific to dairy products “may have a role in prevention of type 2 diabetes”.

She said: “Our observations may contribute to clarifying previous findings regarding dietary fats and their food sources in relation to type 2 diabetes.

“The decreased risk at high intakes of high-fat dairy products, but not of low-fat dairy products, indicate that dairy fat, at least partly, explains observed protective associations between dairy intake and type 2 diabetes.

“Consumption of dairy products can form part of a healthy diet, but it’s important to be aware of the amount you consume”

Richard Elliot

Dr Richard Elliot, research communications manager at Diabetes UK, said more research is needed and warned people against adding high fat dairy products to their diets in a bid to protect against type 2 diabetes.

“Consumption of dairy products can form part of a healthy diet, but it’s important to be aware of the amount you consume as they can be high in calories which can contribute to becoming overweight, and therefore increase your risk of type 2 diabetes,” he said.

“More research will be needed before we change our advice that the best way to reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes is by maintaining a healthy weight through increased physical activity and a balanced diet that is low in salt, saturated fat and sugar and rich in fruit and vegetables,” he added.



Readers' comments (3)

  • michael stone

    I'll 'run with this one' - I like cheese, I'm not overweight.

    I'm still waiting for the definitive research, covering the question of 'exactly how bad for your health is it, if you stress-out about whether you are managing to follow all of the latest dietary health advice'.

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  • Saturated fat link with heart disease questioned, 3 November 2013.

    Saturated fat good for you, expert claims,
    23 October 2013.

    Tomorrow may bring something different, so what does one believe. Sounds like a bit of what you fancy does you good (maybe)!!

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  • michael stone

    What you fancy, might not do you good, but you will probably enjoy it.

    Who was it, who effectively commented that 'If you stick to all of this['puritanical'] 'healthy guidance', you might not live longer, but it will certainly feel as if you do'.

    In the sense of Einstein's 'a second of sitting on a pin, feels much longer'.

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