How do dairy fats influence the risk of type 2 diabetes?

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New Delhi, October 14, 2018:  The debate on whether dairy and dairy-derived fats are good or bad for health has been going on for many years. However, recent data seem to suggest that milk, cheese, and yogurt may be more beneficial than harmful. A new international study corroborates evidence that dairy fats may lower the risk of diabetes.

Recent studies have been suggesting that the consumption of dairy products may have various health benefits.

For instance, one study covered on Medical News Today last month argued that full-fat dairy could help maintain cardiovascular health.

Still, not everyone agrees with these findings, and some countries — including the United Kingdom and the United States — have proposed dietary guidelines that encourage people to choose low-fat or fat-free dairy products according to medicalnewstoday.com.

Now, an international research team led by scientists from the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom, and from Tufts University in Medford, MA, has conducted a pooled analysis of various prospective cohort studies, looking at the relationship between dairy fat consumption and the risk of type 2 diabetes.

 The researchers analyzed the data collected from 16 prospective cohorts from 12 countries, including the U.S. and Australia, which amounted to 63,682 participants in total. Their findings appear in the journal PLOS Medicine.

In explaining why they chose to conduct this analysis, the authors write that the “effects of dairy fat on type 2 diabetes are not well established.”

“While dairy fat contains palmitic acid that could increase risk of [type 2 diabetes], it also contains several other types of fatty acids and further reflects specific foods, such as cheese or yogurt, that could reduce risk,” they note.

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