Eating Low-Fat Dairy Reduces Stroke Risk: Study

Low-fat Dairy Foods

Risk of heart attacks may reduced by eating more low-fat dairy foods such as low-fat yogurt, cheese and skim milk, according to a Swedish study conducted on older adults. The study says that taking vitamin D also plays a major role. The researchers conducted study on nearly 75,000 older adults, the largest so far for this project, were tracked for ten years the eating habit of each individual after answering dietary questionnaire on the kinds of foods they eat and the frequency eaten.
It was reported that people consuming a daily average of 4 servings of low-fat dairy foods results in 12% decrease of overall stroke risks and 13% lesser risk of ischemic stroke compared to those who eat less or no dairy foods at all.
Susanna Larsson, lead author and associate professor of epidemiology at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, thought that the most probable justification is that the nutrients found in low-fat dairy foods in the likes of calcium, magnesium, vitamin D, and potassium had help lower blood pressure, which is of course the main risk factor for stroke. “If people consume more low-fat dairy foods rather than high-fat,” said Larsson, “they will benefit from a reduced risk of stroke and other positive health outcomes.”
The Swedish scientists have followed 74,961 Swedes, ages 45 to 83, starting in 1997. After ten years, the group had reported 4,089 cases of stroke of which 3,159 were ischemic, in which the causes were blood clots blocking a blood vessel supplying the brain. In ischemic strokes, the study found out that consuming more low-fat dairy foods ultimately results to lower risk of strokes. The report further added that around 583 cases were classified as hemorrhagic strokes or bleeding strokes, and 347 were considered unspecified. For ischemic strokes, the more low-fat dairy food subjects consumed, the lower the risk, the study found.
On the other hand, Adam Bernstein, M.D., research director of the Cleveland Clinic’s Wellness Institute who lately led a large study of how diverse protein sources have an effect on stroke risk, says his research did not find the similar results of how low-fat dairy benefits, but he pointed out that Swedes eat a good deal of dairy foods more compared to Americans. It was also observed that Swedes consumed some dairy foods which are not generally eaten in the United States, such as soured milk and crème fraiche. Also Swedish low-fat milk has only 0.5% fat, equivalent to U.S. skim milk, whereas medium-fat milk has 1.5 % fat, a bit less than the 2% reduced-fat milk in the United States. Furthermore, the Swedish study didn’t classify what foods the Swedish people have been eating less of, according to Bernstein, in whose own research has found linkage to both red meat and soda consumption to increased stroke risk. Possibly people who consumed more low-fat dairy foods were at lower risk of stroke since they also eat less meat or fatty foods.
The study conducted by Swedish scientists was published in April 19 in Stroke, a journal of the American Heart Association.
But at the end of the day there’s nothing compared to lifestyle change.

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