Regular consumption of yogurt can protect against the risk of developing diabetes, says a study.
Researchers, from the Harvard School of Public Health in the US, found that eating just 28g of yogurt a day slashed risk of type 2 diabetes by 18%.
The study looked at 2,89,900 people part of three major studies including Health Professionals' Follow-up Study (HFPS), Nurses' Health Study (NHS) and Nurses' Health Study II (NHS II).
As part of the research, the participants completed a questionnaire on their health.
People with cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases plus those who didn't give information about their dairy intake were excluded from the study.
Of the total 1,94,519 participants eligible for the study, 15,156 were diagnosed with type 2 diabetes during the follow-up of the study.
At the end, researchers found a direct link between high intake of yogurt and reduced risk of type 2 diabetes.
Further research conducted on the subject confirmed that inclusion of more yogurt into the daily diet was highly effective in keeping diabetes away.
Researchers assumed that calcium, magnesium or the fatty acids present in dairy products or the probiotic bacteria present in yogurt might have provided the health benefits. The probiotic bacteria have also been found promising in improving fat profiles and anti-oxidant status in type 2 diabetic patients, the authors said while explaining the factors that helped in this occurrence.
"We found that higher intake of yogurt is associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes, whereas other dairy foods and consumption of total dairy did not show this association. The consistent findings for yogurt suggest that it can be incorporated into a healthy dietary pattern," senior researcher on the study Frank Hu, Harvard School of Public Health, said in a news release.
The current study reported in BMC Medicine, serves as a re-confirmation to a research that appeared in the February issue of Diabetologia. During that time, the researchers found that consumption of four-and-a-half pots of 125g yogurt weekly lowered risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 28%.
Apart from these, yogurt has been known to prevent colon tumour, fight acute infectious diarrhoea in children, treating inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and improve good cholesterol.