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J Am Coll Nutr. 2009 Feb;28 Suppl 1:91S-102S.

Milk products, insulin resistance syndrome and type 2 diabetes.

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Laval University, Quebec City, Quebec G1K 7P4, Canada.


A growing body of evidence suggests an inverse relationship between calcium and vitamin D status and dairy food intake and the development of the insulin resistance syndrome (IRS) and type 2 diabetes mellitus (t2DM). Observational studies show a consistent inverse association between dairy intake and the prevalence of IRS and t2DM. In a systematic review of the observational evidence, the odds for developing the IRS was 0.71 (95% CI, 0,57-0.89) for the highest dairy intake (3-4 servings/d) vs. the lowest intake (0.9-1.7 servings/d). Few interventional studies have been conducted to evaluate the effects of dairy food intake on the management of prevention of IRS or t2DM. Intervention studies that have examined the independent effects of dairy intake on specific metabolic components of the IRS including blood pressure and obesigenic parameters have shown favorable effects that support the observational findings albeit the results have been less consistent. Many metabolic and dietary factors appear to influence the degree to which dairy affects IRS metabolic parameters including calcium and vitamin D intake status, BMI, ethnicity and age. Overall, the intake of low-fat dairy products is a feature of a healthy dietary pattern which has been shown to contribute to a significant extent to the prevention of IRS.

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