Milk May Help Shed Weight

January 5/Peshawar, Pakistan/Right Vision News -- Milk can be a useful source of nutrition which can reduce risk of many diseases in human body and may also magically help in shedding weight, finds study. In a two-year weight loss study, milk drinkers had an advantage over those who skipped the milk.

Researchers found that adults who drank nearly two glasses of milk daily, which provided the highest vitamin D levels at six months, lost more weight after two years than those who had little or no milk or milk products-nearly 6kg weight loss, on average.

More than 300 overweight men and women aged 40-65, took part in the study. Regardless of diet, researchers found participants with the highest dairy calcium intake six months into the study (averaging about 580mg daily -- the amount in nearly two glasses of milk) lost about 6kg at the end of the two years, compared to about 3.5kg for those with the lowest dairy calcium intake (averaging about 150mg, or about half of a glass). Beyond calcium, the researchers also found that vitamin D levels independently affected weight loss success and, in line with previous research, milk and milk products were the top contributors to vitamin D in the diets of the study participants.

Despite the potential health benefits, many people are still not getting the recommended 400 international units (IU) of vitamin D daily -- the amount in four glasses of fat-free or low-fat milk. Other research shows that women who eat a lot of red meat may be putting themselves at increased risk of stroke, a new study in more than 30,000 Swedish women hints. The study team found that those in the top ten for red meat consumption, who ate at least 102g, or 3.6oz, daily were 42% more likely to suffer a stroke due to blocked blood flow in the brain compared to women who ate less than 25g (just under an ounce) of red meat daily, a private news channel reported.

Diets heavy in red meat have been linked to a number of ill effects, including an increased risk of certain cancers, heart disease, and high blood pressure. Yet just three studies have looked at red meat and stroke risk. One study found a link, but the others did not.

To investigate further, Dr. Susanna Larsson of the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm and her colleagues looked at 34,670 women 39-73 years old. All were free of cardiovascular disease and cancer at the beginning of the study, in 1997. During 10 years of follow-up, 1,680 of the women (4%) had a stroke.

Stroke caused by blockage of an artery that supplies blood to the brain -- also known as "cerebral infarction" -- was the most common type of stroke, representing 78% of all strokes in the study. Other types of strokes were due to bleeding in the brain, or unspecified causes.

When the researchers divided women into five groups based on how much red meat they reported eating, they found that those in the top five, who ate at least 86g daily (3oz) were at 22% greater risk of cerebral infarction than women in the bottom fifth (less than 36.5g, or 1.3oz, daily).

Women who ate the most processed meat (at least 41.3g, or 1.5oz, a day) were at 24% greater risk of this type of stroke than women who consumed the least (less than 12.1g, or less than half an ounce, a day).

However, there was no link between consumption of red or processed meat and risk of other types of stroke, nor was there any relationship between fresh meat consumption or poultry consumption and any type of stroke.

From the January 10, 2011, Prepared Foods E-dition