Could Dairy Consumption Lower Risk of Obesity?

Whether or not we should really be consuming dairy has been questioned by some, though it has long been considered to be part of a healthy diet. Dietary guidelines recommend a daily consumption of two to four portions of milk-based products like milk, yogurt, cheese, cream and butter.

It’s already widely known that dairy products contain calcium and other minerals that support good bone health. However, a new study has found that consuming dairy may also have beneficial effects on metabolic health, and can even reduce the risk of metabolic diseases like obesity and type 2 diabetes.

The study, conducted by researchers from CHU de Québec Research Center and Laval University, aimed to analyze whether the intake of dairy can control metabolic risk factors such as plasma glucose, plasma lipid profile, trans-palmitoleic acid level, inflammatory markers and blood pressure. Among the 254 participants, 233 had healthy metabolic profiles. All consumed roughly 2.5 portions of dairy foods each day.

The researchers discovered that trans-palmitoleic acid level was linked to lower blood pressure in both men and women, and was associated with a lower body weight in men. As this type of acid can’t be synthesized by the body, it must be consumed through cheese, milk, yogurt and butter.

Research scientist Dr. Iwona Rudkowska said in a press release, “additional well-designed intervention studies are needed to ascertain the effects of increased dairy consumption on metabolic health in healthy and in metabolically deteriorated populations.”

If you want to lower your risk of obesity, and enjoy good health, it’s important to make the right choices when it comes to the type of dairy you consume. Non-organic milk can contain traces of pesticide, whereas at organic dairies, cows are not fed with grains grown using chemical fertilizers or pesticides.

Growth hormones and unnecessary antibiotics aren’t allowed either, so they won’t show up in the milk you drink. This applies to any product made using milk, including yogurt, ice cream, butter and cheese.

Another thing to consider, is that while nearly every mainstream article on diet and nutrition recommends consuming low-fat or non-fat dairy, an increasing number of experts are arguing that it’s healthier to eat and drink full-fat dairy products. In fact, in another new study out of Sweden, researchers found that consuming high-fat dairy products could lower the risk for type 2 diabetes.

assortment of milk productsPrevious research has revealed that women who ate at least one serving of full-fat dairy each day gained 30 percent less weight over a nine-year period, as compared to women who ate only low-fat or no dairy products.

A 16-year analysis of Australian study results revealed that those who eat more full-fat dairy are less likely to die from heart disease, as well.

Also keep in mind that when food manufacturers remove the fat from dairy products like yogurt, they don’t taste very good, so they have to add other ingredients to compensate, such as sugar, high fructose corn syrup or artificial sweetener – all of which counteract the benefits you think you’re getting.

The bottom line is, consuming some dairy – particularly organic, full-fat versions – is good for your health and could even help you maintain a slimmer waistline.

-The Alternative Daily


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