Studies by the Harvard School of Public Health show that men consuming higher levels of dairy foods had a nine-percent less risk in developing Type 2 diabetes. Forty one thousand men were tracked for twelve years. They had no prior history of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, or cancer. They filled out questionnaires, surveys on other health related topics, and exercise to discover if consuming more dairy foods reduced the risk for diabetes. They found that men who ate higher levels of dairy products had a lower risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
Of the 41,000 plus men who took part in the survey, just over 1200 were documented as new cases of diabetes. The study also determined that these men were not having two servings of low fat dairy products each day.
This is significant, because there are an estimated 41 million Americans who have a weakened glucose tolerance which lead to a higher risk of diabetes. This inability to tolerate glucose will continue to rise as our population ages, we grow heavier, and we don’t get the right exercise levels.
Two servings of dairy products a day resulted in a nine-percent drop in risk of diabetes for each serving consumed. The study decided the most benefit came from consuming products that were labeled low fat. Two servings are recommended for most individuals who do not have other health issues that involve dairy products.
Skim milk made a significant difference in the statistics but other low fat products as well as ice cream contributed to the lower risk percentage. Just think, low fat ice cream and reducing the risk of diabetes! Many dairy products on the store shelves today that are labeled low fat and still have wonderful taste. Take a moment to roam in the ice cream section of your favorite grocery store. Look at labels, and then pick a low fat product up and take it home. You may be pleasantly surprised at the quality and taste of the product.
Other considerations for reducing the risk of developing diabetes will depend on your over-all diet, exercise plan, and weight related precautions. Since diabetes is largely associated with overweight and obesity, it pays to look at ways that will not only help us lose weight but decrease the risk of developing this disease as well.
Type 2 diabetes currently affects over 16 million people just in the United States and about 135 million people around the world. Managing the disease takes time, care with diet and usually medications. The primary need for lowering the statistics of diabetes is prevention. Taking proper steps to remain healthy, eating the proper foods, getting the required amount of sleep, and exercising at least five times a week goes a long way toward preventing diabetes.
The role of dairy products in our diet is well documented. Studies will continue in this area to supplement the reports already gathered. The nutrients found in dairy products are important to our over-all health, and as this study concludes, could reduce the risk of Type 2 diabetes, especially for men.