The British journal of nutrition | 2021
Consumption of dairy products and cardiovascular disease risk: results from the French prospective cohort NutriNet-Santé.
In France, dairy products contribute to dietary saturated fat intake, of which reduced consumption is often recommended for cardiovascular disease (CVD) prevention. Epidemiological evidence on the association between dairy consumption and CVD risk remains unclear, suggesting either null or inverse associations. This study aimed to investigate the associations between dairy consumption (overall and specific foods) and CVD risk in a large cohort of French adults. This prospective analysis included participants aged ≥ 18 years from the NutriNet-Santé cohort (2009-2019). Daily dietary intakes were collected using 24h-dietary records. Total dairy, milk, cheese, yogurts, fermented and reduced-fat dairy intakes were investigated. CVD cases (n=1,952) included cerebrovascular (n=878 cases) and coronary heart diseases (CHD, n=1,219 cases). Multivariable Cox models were performed to investigate associations. This analysis included n=104,805 French adults (mean age at baseline 42.8 years (SD 14.6)), mean follow-up 5.5 years (SD 3.0, i.e. 579,155 persons years). There were no significant associations between dairy intakes and total CVD or CHD risks. However, the consumption of at least 160 g/d of fermented dairy (e.g. cheese and yogurts) was associated with a reduced risk of cerebrovascular diseases compared to intakes below 57 g/d (HR=0.81 [0.66-0.98], p-trend=0.01). Despite being a major dietary source of saturated fats, dairy consumption was not associated with CVD or CHD risks in this study. However, fermented dairy was associated with a lower cerebrovascular disease risk. Robust randomized controlled trials are needed to further assess the impact of consuming different dairy foods on CVD risk and potential underlying mechanisms.