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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Wyndmoor, Pennsylvania » Eastern Regional Research Center » Dairy and Functional Foods Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #309056

Title: Dairy products and health: recent insights

item Tunick, Michael
item Van Hekken, Diane

Submitted to: Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry
Publication Type: Literature Review
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/15/2015
Publication Date: 11/4/2015
Citation: Tunick, M.H., Van Hekken, D.L. 2015. Dairy products and health: recent insights. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. 63:9381-9388. DOI: 10.1021/jf5042454..

Interpretive Summary: Dairy products provide calcium and protein to the diet, but are thought by many to also increase the risk of heart disease. A review of recent scientific literature reveals that these fears are unfounded, as milk, cheese, and yogurt have been shown to lower blood pressure and low density lipoprotein cholesterol. Moreover, studies have indicated that dairy products may help prevent diabetes, cancer, obesity, tooth decay, and other common health problems. Organic milk and probiotics offer even more benefits. The advantages of consuming dairy products outweigh any negative health effects.

Technical Abstract: Milk, cheese, yogurt, and other dairy products have long been known to provide good nutrition. Major healthful contributors to the diets of many people include the protein, minerals, vitamins, and fatty acids present in milk. Recent studies have shown that consumption of dairy products appears to be beneficial in muscle building, lowering blood pressure and low density lipoprotein cholesterol, and prevention of tooth decay, diabetes, cancer, and obesity. Additional benefits might be provided by organic milk and by probiotic microorganisms using milk products as a vehicle. New research on dairy products and nutrition will improve our understanding of the connections between these products, the bioactive compounds in them, and their effects on the human body.