The scientific program was kicked off with an introduction by Chairman Prof. Raanan Shamir (Medicine Faculty, Tel Aviv University, Israel) and Co-Chair Sharon Donovan
(PhD, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, IL, US).
Jordi Salas-Salvadó (PhD Human Nutrition at the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Rovira i Virgili University, Spain) reviewed research results on ‘Yogurt & Type 2 Diabetes: overview of the recent epidemiological studies’:
- Frequent yogurt consumption is associated with a lower risk of diabetes, independent of the fat content.
- Substituting 1 daily yogurt serving with 1 serving of other “unhealthy” snack or food alternatives per day, is associated with a reduced risk of T2D incidence.
- Several mechanisms (a satiety effect, increased insulin sensitivity…) have been suggested in order to explain these associations, however more mechanistic studies are needed.
Thomas Wolever (Prof. Nutritional Science, University of Toronto, Canada) discussed research evidence on ‘Fermented dairy intake in relation to glycemic & insulinemia’:
- Yogurt has a low GI, mainly due to its lactose and protein content.
- Plain yogurt (GI = 27) < artificially sweetened yogurt (GI = 41), due to higher content of protein per carbohydrate.
- Yogurt can replace other foods, as a healthy way to reduce diet GI and to reduce the risk of developing T2D.
Li Wen (PhD Endocrinology, Yale School of Medicine, Connecticut, US) presented scientific findings on the ‘Microbiota, small intestine inflammation and Type 2 Diabetes’:
- An altered gut signature promotes intestinal inflammation and subsequently low grade systemic inflammation in T2D.
- The gut microbiota, influenced by DIET, may be linked to human T2D.
- Few studies are related to yogurt and gut microbiota, but results confirm the impact of yogurt on keeping a healthy gut microbiota.
Constance Brown-Riggs, RD and certified diabetes educator, explained more about ‘Healthy eating: an important part of Type 2 Diabetes effective prevention’:
- Delaying or preventing type 2 diabetes will help to turn the tide on the diabetes epidemic and starts with a healthy pregnancy.
- Large clinical trials provided strong evidence that prediabetes can be reversed by almost 60% through weight loss, healthy eating and increased physical activity.
- Yogurt can play a positive role in diabetes prevention as part of healthy diets.
Angelo Tremblay (PhD at the Department of Kinesiology, Laval University, Canada) continued on the subject of healthy eating with ‘Yogurt as a signature of a healthy diet & lifestyle’:
- Yogurt consumers have better nutritional intakes, healthier dietary patterns and a healthier lifestyle, and more weight stability over time.
- For all those scientific reasons, yogurt consumption can be viewed as a signature of a healthy diet & lifestyle.
Prof. Andrew M. Prentice (MRC International Nutrition Group, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK) evaluated ‘Yogurt & Type 2 Diabetes: translating epidemiological evidence into public health‘, by discussing the results from an economic model for the use of yogurt in type 2 diabetes risk reduction in the UK:
- Current data suggest that the promoting yogurt consumption could, in the long term, contribute to a reduction in the prevalence of T2D
- Reducing the risk of developing T2D through increased yogurt consumption would relieve pressure on the health care infrastructures
Azmina Govindji (RD) and Megrette Fletcher hosted a practical session on ‘Yogurt & Type 2 Diabetes – putting it all into practice’: Azmina presented simulations of yogurt swapping to help saving calories and to incease nutrient density. Megrette introduced the ‘Mindful Eating Cycle’, to use our senses and listen to our body for making the right food choices, at the right time, in the right circumstances, and in the right quantity.
Last, but not least: Hubert Cormier (RD) and Cheryl Sternman Rule (food writer and blogger) – treated the assembly with several tasty yogurt-based recipes,
Lori Shemek, Nutrition and Weight Loss expert, attended the YINI symposium at the EB congress in San Diego and interviewed Prof. Donovan on gut microbiota, yogurt and our optimal health. Read more about her key-learnings!
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