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Science Brief: Whole and Reduced-Fat Dairy Foods and CVD

Dairy foods, such as milk, cheese and yogurt, are foundational foods in healthy eating patterns recommended by the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA).

DGA recommendations to reduce saturated fat by choosing low-fat or fat-free dairy foods were intended to help reduce risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD), the leading cause of death in the United States.

Recent observational and trial evidence, however, indicates eating dairy foods—regardless of fat content—is not associated with higher risk for CVD. Emerging research also indicates that saturated fat intake on its own may be a poor metric for identifying healthy foods or diets.

For more information, download our report, “Science Brief: Whole and Reduced-Fat Dairy Foods and CVD Risk.” This brief explores a growing evidence base that supports reassessing the role of whole and reduced-fat dairy foods in healthy, calorie-balanced eating patterns.