Yoghurt consumption has been linked to a reduced risk of lung cancer.
Researchers from the Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee analysed data from 1.44 million people who participated in 10 cohort studies in the U.S., Europe and Asia and looked at their intake of dietary fibre and yoghurt as well as the occurrence of lung cancer.
Accordingly, they found that those who ate a daily serving of yoghurt were able to lower their risk of the disease by 19 per cent. In addition, those who ate a high-fibre diet – which includes fruits, vegetables, nuts and wholegrains – lowered their risk of lung cancer by 15 per cent, independent of yoghurt consumption.
Participants who ate a combination of both lowered their risk of lung cancer by 33 per cent.
The researchers believe their results “suggest a potential protective role of prebiotics and probiotics against lung carcinogenesis” as prebiotics – compounds in food that inspire the growth or activity of beneficial microorganisms – can be found in a high-fibre diet and probiotics, the live microorganisms which can help improve or restore the gut flora, can be found in yoghurt.
Some probiotic strains have been found to prevent lung cancer growths as well as anti-tumour and anti-inflammatory properties.
“For the first time to our knowledge, a potential synergistic association between fibre and yoghurt intakes on lung cancer risk was observed,” the authors wrote in the study. “Although further investigation is needed to replicate these findings and disentangle the underlying mechanisms, our study suggests a potential novel health benefit of increasing dietary fibre and yoghurt intakes in lung cancer prevention.”