Drinking Milk May Raise Parkinson's Risk in Men

The above mentioned headline arises from the April 6, 2004 Reuters Health reporting on a study published in the medical journal Neurology. New research shows that middle-aged men who drink a glass or two of milk daily might be increasing their risk of developing Parkinson's disease. The research notes that the risk doesn't include women. This new study supports the outcomes of an earlier report linking high consumption of milk products with an elevated risk of Parkinson's disease among men. In this recent study 7504 men between the age of 45 and 68 years, were signed up for the Honolulu Heart Program and followed for 3 decades for the development of Parkinson's disease.
Of all of the participants a total of 128 developed Parkinson's disease during follow-up. Dr. R. D. Abbott, from the University of Virginia Health System in Charlottesville, and colleagues noted that the risk of Parkinson's disease increased with rise in the quantity of milk consumed daily. The ultimate statistical analysis demonstrated that heavy milk drinkers were 2-3-times more prone to develop Parkinson's disease than non-milk drinkers. In all, researchers found out that the risk of Parkinson's disease was small. The study noted that over a period of a year, 6.9 cases of the disease would normally be expected among 10,000 people who did not drink milk each day. That number rose to, 14.9 cases per 10,000 people who drank more than 16 ounces of milk per day. The authors ruled out calcium as the contributing factor as they could find no relationship that calcium either from dairy or non-dairy sources, had any effect on the risk of Parkinson's disease. They concluded that some other component in milk has to be accountable for the rise in the cases of Parkinson's.

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