In a recently published study, females who consumed the most milk and dairy products as teenagers had a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes as adults.

The study, reported in this month’s issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, involved 37,038 women who had completed a food-frequency questionnaire during high school. Those in the highest quintile of dairy consumption during high school had a 38 percent lower risk of type 2 diabetes later in life.

“Our data suggest that higher dairy product intake during adolescence is associated with a lower risk of T2D (or type 2 diabetes),” said the researchers, some of whom are from the Harvard School of Public Health, Harvard Medical School, and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Mass.

Read the abstract here.

It is further affirmation of the role that dairy foods play in a healthy diet.  

“Recognition of the science in this report is very positive for dairy and builds support for the role of dairy foods in a healthy diet that reduces risk of chronic diseases,” said Greg Miller, executive vice president of research, regulatory and scientific affairs at Dairy Management Inc. and the National Dairy Council.

And, according to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans report released last January, there is moderate evidence that  intake of milk and milk products is associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes and with lower blood pressure in adults.