New research published in scientific journal Neurology revealed that high intake of low-fat dairy greatly increases the risk for developing Parkinson’s disease. Researchers at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston observed 80,736 women and 48,610 men, of which 1,036 developed Parkinson’s disease over the course of 25 years. Participants who consumed the most low-fat milk—three servings per day or more—exhibited a 39 percent greater risk of developing the debilitating disease characterized by tremors, impaired coordination, and muscle rigidity. “Our study is the largest analysis of dairy and Parkinson’s to date,” study researcher Katherine C. Hughes said. “Such dairy products, which are widely consumed, could potentially be a modifiable risk factor for the disease.” While consuming dairy has previously been thought to improve bone and joint health, a study published last month in the British Medical Journal found that the fiber contained in plant-based diets was key to reducing the symptoms of osteoarthritis.
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