Dairy produce like milk and yoghurt can help human heart health – new global study

A fresh global research study that says that eating dairy is linked to a lower risk for heart disease was welcomed today by advocacy group Dairy Connect.

The Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE) study, published on September 11 in the Lancet magazine, spanned 21 countries and involved more than 135,000 people.

Dairy Connect CEO Shaughn Morgan said researchers had followed consumer’s dairy consumption and general health for about nine years.

“The new research suggests that in moderation, dairy products might actually lower risk for heart disease and stroke,” he said.

“The PURE study found that people who consumed more than two servings a day of milk, cheese, or yoghurt had lower rates of cardiovascular disease compared with those who ate less.

“This was true even for people who ate only whole-fat dairy.”

The researchers wrote that eating dairy products should not be discouraged and perhaps should even be encouraged in low and middle-income countries where dairy consumption was low.

People in those countries eat less dairy than in North America and Europe, they wrote.

Study author Dr Mahshid Dehghan, a researcher at the Population Health Research Institute in Canada, said people living in wealthier countries who didn’t eat much dairy might benefit from adding more milk, cheese, or yogurt to their diets.

Shaughn Morgan said that whole-fat dairy products had gained a bad reputation because they contained high amounts of saturated fat, which raised LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol levels, a risk factor for heart disease.

“The researchers pointed out that dairy contained many nutrients that are good for us,” he said. 

These included amino acids; unsaturated fats; vitamins K-1 and K-2; calcium; and probiotics.

“A great reason to purchase nutritious fresh Australian dairy produce from your local supplier today”, Shaughn concluded.