To evaluate the relation between yogurt consumption as well as cheese, milk, and total dairy, and high blood pressure (HBP) in two Nurses’ Health Study cohorts (NHS, n = 69 298), NHS II (n = 84 368) and the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study (HPFS, n = 30 512).
NHS, NHS II, and HPFS participants were followed for incident HBP for up to 30, 20, and 24 years, respectively. Hazard ratios were calculated using time-dependent multivariate-adjusted Cox proportional hazards models. Pooled risk estimates were derived from fixed effects meta-analyses.
Participants consuming at least five servings per week (vs. <1 serving per month) of yogurt in NHS, NHS II, and HPFS had 19% (95% CI 0.75–0.87), 17% (95% CI 0.77–0.90), and 6% (95% CI 0.83–1.07) lower HBP risks, respectively. In pooled analyses of these cohorts, higher yogurt consumption was linked with 16% (95% CI 0.80–0.88) lower HBP risk; higher total dairy (3 to <6 vs. <0.5 servings/day), milk (2 to <6/day vs. <4/week) and cheese (1 to 4/day vs. <1/week) were associated with 16% (95% CI 0.81–0.87), 12% (95% CI 0.86–0.90), and 6% (95% CI 0.90–0.97) lower HBP risks, respectively. After controlling for BMI as a possible causal intermediate, total dairy, yogurt, milk, and cheese were associated with 13, 10, 8, and 8% lower HBP risks, respectively. The combination of higher yogurt intake and higher DASH (’Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension’) diet scores was associated with 30% (95% CI 0.66–0.75) lower HBP risk compared with lower levels of both factors.
Higher total dairy intake, especially in the form of yogurt, was associated with lower risk of incident HBP in middle-aged and older adult men and women.