Lack of dairy indicates a future of metabolic syndrome for college students
We all know milk does the body good, but lack of milk and dairy products just may have college kids developing metabolic syndrome.
The rise in metabolic syndrome is accompanied by a decrease in milk and dairy products and an increase in sugar-sweetened beverages consumption and possibly using those sugary beverages to replace milk in the diet, according to the study’s abstract.
New this new study from the University of Illinois, researchers set out to determine if young adults were not meeting the dairy recommendations of three servings of dairy daily were at greater risk for metabolic syndrome.
For the study 339 college applicants selected from the 2009 UP AMIGOS cohort (Universities of San Luis Potosí and Illinois: A Multidisciplinary Investigation on Genetics, Obesity, and Social-Environment), aged 18 to 25 years, seeking admission to the 2010 school cycle for the Autonomous University of San Luis Potosí.
All participants underwent a health screening at the university clinic which included measures of height, weight, waist circumference and blood pressure., a medical interview and exam conducted by a physician, a blood draw following a night of fasting and a food frequency questionnaire and then evaluated for metabolic risk factors; increased waist circumference, elevated blood pressure, h hypertriglyceridemia (condition n which triglyceride levels are elevated) and low HDL-C levels and physical activity that was assessed by administering the long version of the International Physical Activity Ques- tionnaire (IPAQ).
The study revealed overall metabolic syndrome was found in 10.5% or 36 participants. Low HDL-C levels as the most common risk factor found in 51.3% of participants followed by increased waist circumference and the prevalence elevated high blood pressure in 19.5%, impaired fasting glucose 12.5% and hypertriglyceridemia in 19.8%.
The risk of metabolic syndrome for those participants not meeting the daily recommendations was 2.6 to 4.1 times higher compared to those who met the daily recommendations.
Dr. Margarita Teran-Garcia, PhD, MD, assistant professor of human and clinical nutrition, U of I, commented "And only one in four young persons in the study was getting the recommended amount of dairy.” She adds this research is important to Hispanics in the United States because many have a genetic predisposition for very low HDL (good) cholesterol. “"And obesity is now a more serious public health problem in Mexico than in the United States. According to new data from a national Mexican survey, 72 percent of adults are overweight or obese, in contrast to 66 to 70 percent of U.S. adults,"
The researchers write “In summary, Mexican college applicants who were not meeting daily dairy recommendations triplicated their risk for presenting Mets (metabolic syndrome). Our results suggest that simply meeting dairy recommendations may serve as an effective dietary prevention and intervention measure to re- duce individual risk for MetS. Adopting the USDA daily dairy recommendation as a habit early in life is a low cost approach to have a positive impact in maintaining health and decreasing metabolic disease risk.”
According to Dr. Teran-Garcia, the research team had suspected that students were substituting high-calorie sugar-sweetened beverages such as soda and juice drinks for milk, but they found that wasn't the case. Instead, a quarter of the group drank these sorts of beverages in addition to dairy products, contributing surplus calories.
In closing she adds "We are concerned because persons in this age group don't visit the doctor often, and they may not know they have problems with their weight, blood pressure, lipids, or blood sugar.”
This study is published in the journal Food and Nutrition Sciences.
The USDA recommends for those ages 14 and up has three cups of dairy daily.
My information on nutrition can be found online at Choose My Plate.