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Yogurt may be ally in diabetes fight

GENEVA -- In the fight against diabetes, yogurt may be on your side.

Eating yogurt can reduce the risk of getting type 2 diabetes by 28 percent, compared with consuming none, according to a study published yesterday by Diabetologia. Higher consumption of low-fat fermented dairy products, such as yogurt and some cheeses, also lowered the relative risk of diabetes by 24 percent overall, the study showed.

Dairy products, an important source of proteins, vitamins and calcium, also contain saturated fat, which shouldn't be consumed in high quantities, according to current dietary guidelines. Previous studies analyzing possible links between their consumption and diabetes had inconclusive findings, the researchers said.

"Specific foods may have an important role in the prevention of type 2 diabetes," lead scientist Nita Forouhi, from the Medical Research Council Epidemiology Unit at the University of Cambridge, said. Diabetologia is the journal of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes.

Diabetes afflicts 382 million people worldwide and kills one person every six seconds, according to the International Diabetes Federation. Some with type 1 diabetes have a lifelong inability to produce insulin. The type 2 variant tends to strike later in life, brought on by obesity and sedentary lifestyles, as people become resistant to the insulin their own body produces.

-- Bloomberg News

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