Full-fat yogurt helps lower glucose levels in people with prediabetes, finds research

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Researchers from the University of Vermont have found that eating full-fat yogurt on a daily basis may help lower fasting glucose levels in middle-age and older adults with prediabetes. The research team will present their work this week at the American Physiology Summit, the flagship annual meeting of the American Physiological Society (APS), in Long Beach, California.

As obesity and type 2 diabetes continue to be a growing epidemic in the U.S., many national health organizations, including the American Heart Association, recommend eating low- or nonfat dairy options, such as milk, cheese and yogurt, as part of a “heart healthy” diet. However, recent research suggests that—contrary to the messages the public often receives about dietary fat, weight gain and chronic disease—full-fat dairy products may be beneficial to blood glucose and fat metabolism.

The researchers studied a group of adult volunteers between the ages of 45 and 75. Most of the participants were diagnosed with prediabetes—one person had type 2 diabetes—with an average fasting blood glucose level of 101.1 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL). Prediabetes, a condition in which blood sugar is elevated but has not yet reached the level of type 2 diabetes, is defined as a fasting blood glucose level between 100 and 125 mg/dL, explained Victoria Taormina, Ph.D. student and first author of the study.

In this crossover study, the volunteers participated in a three-week block when they ate three servings of plain, full-fat yogurt each day. The same volunteers ate three servings of fat-free yogurt daily during a different three-week span. The amount of yogurt consumed daily varied for each person based on their individual calorie and nutrient needs. However, based on a 2,000-calorie diet, this was 510 grams (approximately 17 ounces) of yogurt each day. While participants followed the full-fat diet, they consumed 17 grams of dairy fat per day.

The research team found that after the full-fat yogurt portion of the study, the participants’ average fasting glucose levels dropped to 97.7 mg/dL, which is considered in the “normal” range.

“This research is part of a growing body of evidence that contradicts the current narrative in dietary recommendations of national and international health authorities to opt for low- or nonfat dairy, instead of full-fat dairy products,” Taormina said. “We’re hoping this pilot trial serves as an impetus for further research to truly clarify the relationship between dairy fat intake and blood glucose control.”

Full-fat yogurt helps lower glucose levels in people with prediabetes, finds research (2023, April 19)
retrieved 19 April 2023
from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2023-04-full-fat-yogurt-glucose-people-prediabetes.html

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