Scientists at Harvard School of Public Health with others have determined that the existence in the blood stream of a fat (trans-palmitoleic acid) found in milk, cheese, yogurt and butter (but not produced by the body) is associated with a significantly lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes and healthier levels of cholesterol.


Per the article:

"At baseline, higher circulating levels of trans-palmitoleic acid were associated with healthier levels of blood cholesterol, inflammatory markers, insulin levels, and insulin sensitivity, after adjustment for other risk factors. During follow-up, individuals with higher circulating levels of trans-palmitoleic acid had a much lower risk of developing diabetes, with about a 60% lower risk among participants in the highest quintile (fifth) of trans-palmitoleic acid levels, compared to individuals in the lowest quintile."

"In contrast to the types of industrially produced trans fats found in partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, which have been linked to higher risk of heart disease, trans-palmitoleic acid is almost exclusively found in naturally-occurring dairy and meat trans fats, which in prior studies have not been linked to higher heart disease risk."


The researchers have cautioned that confirmation studies are in order but the results of the current study have been published in the 12-21-10 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Replies to This Discussion

I didn't know that previous studies showed no link between the fat in dairy products and heart desease. Although I love cheese I have not been eating it because I thought it would contribute to the development of heart desease. Especially with the positive correlation between trans-palmitoleic acid (that I can only get by injestion) and lower risk of developing diabetes I think I can now partake of cheese el al of dairy without a guilty conscience.  

Thanks for the information about salt in cheese. I like cheese and want to get some of that trans-palmitoleic acid in me so I'll have to see what low salt low sugar varieties of cheese are available. I don't have a cholesterol problem and am not a diabetic but I will be 64 in February so I am becoming more aware that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
I agree completely on keeping one's self educated on health and up to date on the latest data. Tons of people don't, then get their information from dietitian's who also don't, and they diet, diet, diet till it's made them crazy and they get nowhere fast.

On the milk and weight loss point, I saw the following article recently that cites a University of Tennessee study that showed that milk is beneficial for losing weight.

Is Milk Really Healthy for You

Dairy, from what I gather, is a pretty pro food group.

I would think that if any dairy would be problem with diabetes, it would be milk.  Milk has a fair amount of sugar, in the form of sucrose, in it - 11g of of it per serving.


Oh well, I'll add this article to my list of articles that are in firm support of dairy, especially milk.  Outside of beer, nothing beats milk, which is why I drink 4-5 servings a day.   Well, coffee comes close....

I believe milk is known for having the sugar, lactose. I understand that lactose free dairy products are available. I suppose the trans-palmitoleic acid would still be in them and they probably would have fewer calories.
Woops, you're right on the lactose thing, thanks for correcting me.


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