Eating cheese, yoghurt or eggs twice a day could help lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, according to new research.

A Canadian team say consuming two servings of dairy everyday might also help reduce blood pressure and other medical issues related to heart disease.

The trial, carried out by the McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada, involved looking at data from the Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE) study. This has recorded information for more than nine years from 140,000 people and 21 countries.

All participants were aged between 35 and 70 and had provided data on their medical history, including prescription medicines, smoking and measurements of weight, height, waist circumference, blood pressure and fasting blood glucose. They were also asked to complete a survey on their dietary habits.

Having studied the data, the research team say they found an association between dairy intake and the reduction of metabolic syndrome (MetS), which is the medical term for heath conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure (hypertension) and obesity.

Infact, eating two portions of dairy a day was found to reduce the risk of MetS by 24 per cent. That percentage dropped even lower to 28 per cent among those who opted for the full fat dairy options.

The researchers said: “Higher intake of whole fat (but not low fat) dairy was associated with a lower prevalence of MetS and most of its component factors, and with a lower incidence of hypertension and diabetes.

“If our findings are confirmed in sufficiently large and long-term trials, then increasing dairy consumption may represent a feasible and low-cost approach to reducing (metabolic syndrome), hypertension, diabetes, and ultimately cardiovascular disease events worldwide.”

The findings have been published in the BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care journal.

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