Eating yoghurt lessens the symptoms of chronic inflammation, according to new research published in the Journal of Nutrition.
Yoghurt improves the integrity of the intestinal lining, preventing endotoxins (pro-inflammatory molecules produced by gut microbes) from crossing into the blood stream.
The study involved 120 premenopausal women, half obese and half non-obese. Half of the participants were assigned to eat 12 ounces of low-fat yoghurt every day for nine weeks; a control group ate non-dairy pudding for nine weeks.
During the investigation, among the largest human intervention studies to look at yoghurt’s impact on chronic inflammation, the researchers took fasting blood samples from participants and evaluated an assortment of biomarkers that are used to measure endotoxin exposure and inflammation.
Brad Bolling, the study’s lead author, said: ‘I wanted to look at the mechanism more closely and look specifically at yogurt. There have been some mixed results over the years, but a recent article shows that things are pointing more toward anti-inflammatory, particularly for fermented dairy.’
The results showed that while some of the biomarkers remained steady over time, the yoghurt-eaters experienced significant improvements in certain key markers, such as TNF, an important inflammation-activating protein.
‘The results indicate that ongoing consumption of yogurt may be having a general anti-inflammatory effect,’ Bolling said.