Lower Risk of Stroke with Low-Fat Dairy Foods

If you want to raise a glass and make a toast to good health, do yourself a favor: fill it with low-fat milk.

It turns out that eating low-fat dairy foods can reduce your risk of stroke. Indeed, researchers found adults who ate low-fat dairy foods had a 12 percent lower risk of stroke and a 13 percent lower risk of ischemic stroke when compared to people who ate high-fat dairy foods. The study was published in Stroke, a journal of the American Heart Association.

Researchers said the benefits are likely attributed to vitamins and minerals contained in low-fat dairy foods such as: calcium, potassium, magnesium and vitamin D.

“This is the largest study to date to examine the association between consumption of total, low-fat, full-fat and specific dairy foods and the risk of stroke in adult men and women, said Susanna Larsson, the study’s first author, in a news release from the AHA. Larsson is an associate professor of epidemiology in the Division of Nutritional Epidemiology, National Institute of Environmental Medicine at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm.

“From a public health perspective, if people consume more low-fat dairy foods rather than high-fat dairy foods, they will benefit from a reduced risk of stroke and other positive health outcomes,” Larsson said.

Eating low-fat dairy foods is one part of the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension diet – DASH – which aims to reduce blood pressure. Having high blood pressure is a major risk factor for stroke, according to the release.

+ Read More about Preventing Stroke

+ Learn about Nutritional Analysis

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