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Daily Yogurt Intake Linked to Lower Diabetes Risk

Update Date: Nov 24, 2014 08:47 PM EST

Yogurt consumption may lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, according to new research.

The latest findings could help prevent millions of people from developing the chronic condition. According to the study's background information, around 366 million people worldwide are suffer type 2 diabetes. Experts predict that this number will increase to 552 million people by 2030.

The latest research involves data from three prospective cohort studies that followed the medical history and lifestyle habits of health professionals. There were 41,497 participants from the Health Professionals' Follow-up Study, 67,138 from the Nurses' Health Study and 85,884 from the Nurses' Health Study II.

"Our study benefited from having such a large sample size, high rates of follow up and repeated assessment of dietary and lifestyle factors," lead researcher Mu Chen of Harvard School of Public Health said in a news release.

Researchers noted that there were 15,156 cases of type 2 diabetes during the follow-up period. While dairy consumption had no association with type 2 diabetes risk, high consumption of yogurt was found to significantly lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Further analysis linked daily consumption of 28g serving of yogurt to an 18 percent lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

"We found that higher intake of yogurt is associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes, whereas other dairy foods and consumption of total dairy did not show this association. The consistent findings for yogurt suggest that it can be incorporated into a healthy dietary pattern," said senior researcher Frank Hu, of Harvard School of Public Health, according to a journal release.

The latest findings are published in open access journal BMC Medicine.

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