What happens if you drink milk every day: benefits, harms, lactose intolerance

By Jurassic JennMay 11, 2024 14:39 PMHealth
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What happens if you drink milk every day
What happens if you drink milk every day. Source: www.mashed.com

"It's good for the body" - this iconic slogan from milk advertising sums up its many health benefits, which range from bone health to improved mood. Nutritionists say that a glass of milk, a traditional dairy product, is good for most people every day.

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"Milk is very rich in nutrients and can be consumed daily," explains Rahaf Al Bochi, a representative of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. According to her, milk contains calcium, potassium, magnesium, vitamin D, protein, and many other nutrients. Unless you are lactose intolerant, allergic to milk, or follow a vegan diet, there is no reason to avoid consuming milk every day.

It's always best to consult a dietitian about how much milk you should drink per day and what type of milk is best for you and your needs, says Al Bochi. Here's what you should know about the health benefits of milk.

Facts about the nutritional properties of milk

  • Calories: 122
  • Protein: 8,2 г
  • Total fat: 4,7 г
  • Saturated fats: 2,7 г
  • Carbohydrates 12 g
  • Sugar: 12 g (all from lactose or natural milk sugar)

A cup of milk also contains more than 300 mg of calcium - it is recommended to get from 1000 to 1200 mg per day.

Which milk is the healthiest?

The type of milk you choose - skim, whole, or 2% - is a personal choice based on your dietary needs and taste preferences, says Christine Kirkpatrick, RD, RD, a dietitian.

For example, whole milk is higher in fat, so it's best to avoid it if you're on a low-fat diet, she explains: "As with any food, there is no one-size-fits-all."

When choosing milk, Kristen Carley, PhD, a dietitian, advises reading the label and especially checking the fat, protein, and sugar content. Buy a product that meets your health needs.

Health benefits of milk

Milk has numerous health benefits.

It is good for your bones

Milk is known to promote bone health. It contains calcium, vitamin D, phosphorus, and protein, all nutrients that support bone health, according to the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium and phosphorus, and studies show that it can reduce inflammation in the body.

Helps to control weight

Milk is good for weight loss and weight management, says Kirkpatrick. It's high in protein, which, according to Al Bochi, keeps you feeling full, and the carbohydrate content provides energy throughout the day.

A study published in the journal Nutrients found that participants who included dairy products in a calorie-restricted diet lost more weight and fat without losing lean muscle mass compared to those on a controlled diet. However, a review of studies on the benefits of milk showed that it did not lead to significant weight loss, but it also did not lead to weight gain.

Can improve heart health

Research on the benefits of milk for heart health is controversial, with some suggesting that the potassium levels in milk may reduce the risk of stroke, heart disease, and high blood pressure. Other studies link milk to an increased risk of stroke because it contains saturated fat. Yet another study found a neutral relationship between dairy products and cardiovascular health.

May reduce the risk of developing dementia

There is also a link between milk consumption and a lower risk of cognitive decline. A 2021 study found that daily milk consumption can reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease.

Supports the immune system

Because milk is a good source of essential nutrients such as calcium, vitamin D, vitamin A, riboflavin, potassium, vitamin B12, and more, Carly says it can support your immune system and overall well-being.

Lifts your mood

Milk contains the amino acid tryptophan, which can help you feel a sense of calm, says Al Bochi. Studies show that a balanced diet that includes milk and other dairy products is associated with better sleep quality. A good night's sleep is associated with improved mood and can improve overall mental health. Vitamin D can also improve symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Are there any disadvantages to drinking milk daily?

Unless you're lactose intolerant or allergic to milk, most people can enjoy milk on a daily basis, says Carly. If you do have one of these conditions, consuming dairy products can trigger inflammation, gastrointestinal upset, and changes in immune function, Kirkpatrick adds.

However, some people may decide to reduce their dairy consumption for environmental reasons. According to Harvard University, dairy production uses land, water, and other natural resources, and livestock that produce dairy products produce greenhouse gases.

One thing worth noting is that some of the backlash against milk in recent years has been linked to the belief that it can cause cancer. However, the evidence for a link between dairy consumption and cancer is extremely limited, so most experts do not recommend making decisions about milk consumption based on this belief.

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