Sadeghi M , Khosravi-Boroujeni H , Sarrafzadegan N , Asgary S , Roohafza H , Gharipour M , Sajjadi F , Khalesi S , Rafieian-Kopaei M. - 45649 N - Nutr Res Pract 2014 ; 8(3) : 336-41.

Cheese consumption in relation to cardiovascular risk factors among Iranian adults- IHHP Study

BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVE It is expected that dairy products such as cheeses, which are the main source of cholesterol and saturated fat, may lead to the development or increase the risk of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases; however, the results of different studies are inconsistent. This study was conducted to assess the association between cheese consumption and cardiovascular risk factors in an Iranian adult population.

SUBJECTS/METHODS Information from the Isfahan Healthy Heart Program (IHHP) was used for this cross-sectional study with a total of 1,752 participants (782 men and 970 women). Weight, height, waist and hip circumference measurement, as well as fasting blood samples were gathered and biochemical assessments were done. To evaluate the dietary intakes of participants a validated food frequency questionnaire, consists of 49 items, was completed by expert technicians. Consumption of cheese was classified as less than 7 times per week and 7-14 times per week.

RESULTS Higher consumption of cheese was associated with higher C-Reactive Protein (CRP), apolipoprotein A and high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) level but not with fasting blood sugar (FBS), total cholesterol, low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), triglyceride (TG) and apolipoprotein B. Higher consumption of cheese was positively associated with consumption of liquid and solid oil, grain, pulses, fruit, vegetable, meat and dairy, and negatively associated with Global Dietary Index. After control for other potential confounders the association between cheese intake and metabolic syndrome (OR: 0.81; 96%CI: 0.71-0.94), low HDL-C level (OR: 0.87; 96%CI: 0.79-0.96) and dyslipidemia (OR: 0.88; 96%CI: 0.79-0.98) became negatively significant.

CONCLUSION This study found an inverse association between the frequency of cheese intake and cardiovascular risk factors; however, further prospective studies are required to confirm the present results and to illustrate its mechanisms.