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Recent Study: Whole-Milk may Prevent Strokes

2018-09-06 09:16 Thursday

Traditional dietary guidelines have maintained that whole milk can contribute to heart disease and strokes, and that it is less healthy than skim or semi-skimmed milk. However, a recent study suggests the opposite, conventional wisdom is not true in this instance, and that whole milk is in fact the healthier option.

The study, conducted by The University of Texas Health Science Center, found that not only does fat in dairy products not cause heart disease or strokes, but that it may actually help prevent strokes from occurring.

whole milk

Professor Marcia Otto, who led the study, said there was growing evidence that dairy fat did not increase the risk of heart disease or overall mortality in the elderly. In addition, the results showed that a fatty acid in dairy products can reduce the risk of death from cardiovascular diseases such as strokes.

The study began in 1992, when researchers took blood samples from 2,907 adults over 65 without a history of cardiovascular disease, and measured for plasma levels of three different fatty acids from dairy products. Over the course of 22 years, the researchers periodically collected samples and checked the participants' health status in a final follow-up survey.

The researchers concluded that none of the measured fatty acids were significantly associated with participant mortality rates. In contrast, whole milk products were found to be more helpful than harmful. The results also showed that those with higher levels of fatty acids, especially from whole milk products, had a 42% lower chance of dying from a stroke.

Full-fat dairy products

Professor Otto noted it is necessary to review current dietary guidelines for full-fat dairy products, in the wake of the study’s findings. Full-fat dairy products are rich in nutrients such as calcium and potassium, which are essential for human health, both in children and the elderly, who are vulnerable to osteoporosis. Furthermore, low-fat products often compensate for the loss of flavor by adding more sugar, which can lead to health consequences.

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