Background: The purpose of this study was to examine lifestyle and health patterns of yogurt consumers in order to enhance the analysis between yogurt consumption and health outcomes. Methods: We assessed the socio-cultural and behavioral characteristics of 2,173 consumers and 1,223 nonconsumers of yogurt in a sample of postmenopausal women participating in the Observational Study (OS) of the Women's Health Initiative (WHI). Results: Mean yogurt consumption was 1.3 cups/week (standard deviation, 2.0). Thirty-six percent of the sample did not consume yogurt. Yogurt consumers were, on the average, younger, taller, lighter, wealthier, better educated, and were more likely to be white and married than nonconsumers. They also exhibited healthier behavior including being more physically active, having a lower rate of smoking, and consuming a healthier diet, notably a significantly higher intake of calcium, fiber, vitamins A and D, lycopene, fruits, and vegetables and lower intake of total and saturated fats. Conclusions: This study found significant differences between yogurt consumers and nonconsumers-notably younger age, higher level of income and education, and overall healthier lifestyle. These characteristics should be considered when investigating the relationship of yogurt consumption to overall health.
- Women's health