What type of food products contribute to, or lower, the risk of type 2 diabetes (T2D) has until now not been entirely clear. A long-term Swedish study presented at this year's annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) in Vienna, Austria, revealed that consumption of high-fat dairy products is associated with a lower risk of developing diabetes.
For their study, the researchers at the Lund University Diabetes Center, Malmö, analysed data of 26,930 individuals (60 percent women), aged 45-74 years, from the population-based Malmö Diet and Cancer cohort. During 14 years of follow up, 2860 incident T2D cases were identified. Participants were classified depending on food intake, and divided into five groups, which the scientists used to calculate the diabetes risk.
They found that high intake of high-fat dairy products was associated with a 23 percent lower incidence of T2D for the highest-consuming quintile of participants (median=8 portions/day) compared with the lowest consuming quintile (median=1 portion/day). Particularly cream and high-fat fermented milk reduced the risk of developing diabetes, whereas there was no association found between intakes of low-fat dairy products and risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
High intakes of meat and meat products were, regardless of fat content, associated with increased risk, but the increased risk was higher for lower-fat meats, with risk of type 2 diabetes for high-fat meats being 9 percent higher, and for low fat 24 percent higher.