Recent review lends support for role of dairy foods in promoting bone, cardiometabolic, cognitive, and digestive health.
A recent review, Dairy Foods: Current Evidence of their Effects on Bone, Cardiometabolic, Cognitive, and Digestive Health, published in Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety found that dairy’s rich profile of nutrients confers some beneficial effects to these health outcomes. Yet, even in the United States, many individuals do not consume the recommended 3 cups of dairy foods a day. The study’s authors Joanne Slavin, PhD, RD , Julie M. Hess (a member of Dr. Slavin’s lab), and Satya S. Jonnalagadda, PhD, RD, MBA, suggest that development of palatable, health-promoting dairy foods is one way to help consumers meet their recommended daily servings of dairy. Check out our blog section to see how consumer perception of dairy is changing, making is a key trend in 2016.
Dairy foods have long been considered nutrient-dense and health-promoting products that offer many health benefits to their consumers. This review is an overview of the health benefits associated with them, drawing from recent research conducted on the associations of dairy food components with bone, cardiometabolic, cognitive, and digestive health in cross-sectional and intervention studies. Each section details the associations of dairy with a certain aspect of health and focuses on the benefits milk product consumption may have on the prevention and management of chronic health conditions such as osteoporosis, the metabolic syndrome, and dementia. Dairy food components, as well as the potential biological mechanisms responsible for their effects on health, are also addressed. Although several of the biological mechanisms warrant further research, current evidence suggests that dairy consumption confers some beneficial effects to bone, cardiometabolic, cognitive, and digestive health. Due to its nutrient profile and the current evidence of its benefits, at least 1 daily serving of a dairy item is recommended by the dietary guidelines of several countries. Yet, even in the United States, many individuals do not consume the recommended 3 cups of dairy foods a day. Therefore, this review concludes with a description of the current public health impact of dairy food research as well as recommendations for the food industry to formulate dairy foods that are both palatable and health-promoting for consumers.