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Can Milk Help You Lose Weight?

Can Milk Help You Lose Weight?

Consumption of milk is a very controversial subject. On the one hand research suggests that milk is a rich source of calcium which has been linked with the reduced risk of osteoporosis (reduced bone density), diabetes, heart disease and even cancer. However, critics suggest that the above benefits are untrue and that consuming milk can also lead to diabetes and obesity. As a result of these criticisms many people who want to lose weight avoid dairy products. In this article I will discuss both sides of the argument and analyse whether milk really needs to be avoided as part of a weight loss plan.

There is a lot of positive evidence to support regular consumption of milk. Milk is full of calcium which is a very important mineral. This article in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association suggests that even lactose intolerant patients should try to drink a little milk with meals because of the calcium and also because it is rich in Vitamin D which helps the body utilise calcium. Milk also contains 7 other essential nutrients including potassium, protein and riboflavin all of which are very important for the proper functioning of your body. Furthermore, milk has been linked with reducing the risk of contracting a number of diseases. This study published in Diabetes Care looked at the link between type 2 diabetes and consumption of calcium & dairy products in 37,183 women who had no previous previous history of the disease. The conclusions found that consuming milk and dairy products could reduce the risk of contracting type 2 diabetes by as much as 21%. Finally, milk could actually help you lose weight according to this article suggesting that it definitely should not be avoided.

So with all this positive evidence why do people continue to criticise and avoid milk? Well critics suggest that milk is not all it’s cracked up to be. Many campaigns such as Not Milk suggest that the health benefits associated with milk are actually the result of highly effective marketing from the dairy industry. These critics even go as far as suggesting that milk can be damaging to your health. This article cites research to support claims that milk can actually increase the risk of osteoporosis, cause cardiovascular disease, lead to cancer and that it can also be responsible for a number of other health ailments. Furthermore, a number of studies such as this one suggest that consuming more milk makes you gain weight. Participants who drank more than 3 servings of milk per day were found to be 35% more likely to become overweight than people who drank 2 servings or less per day.

After reading the above information the pressing issue is should milk be avoided as part of a weight loss plan? In my opinion NO it should not. There are new studies coming out all the time promoting or criticising the consumption of milk. For every study that criticises milk you can find another that supports it. After reading this article you can probably see there are a lot of conflicting claims, opinions and studies out there. A product as popular and accepted as milk is always going to be scrutinised and there is always going to be too much evidence to come up with a definitive conclusion. However, the facts are that milk is rich in a number of important nutrients which help your body stay healthy and no study can change this.

I have drank milk for as long as I can remember and I have never suffered any adverse effects and it has definitely not made me fat. There are much more damaging foods out there including processed foods, heavily fried foods, fast foods, carbonated & sugary drinks etc. Plus, all of these foods will lead to much greater weight gain than one or two glasses of milk each day. Obviously, consuming too much milk can be bad for you just as too much protein, too many carbs, too many vitamins or too much of anything can. As long as you stick to a sensible daily amount you should have no problems and could even make a positive contribution to your health. If you are really that worried about milk making you fat then get a low fat or skimmed variety which comes in at a minimal 100 calories per glass . I for one will not be giving up milk anytime soon.

What do you guys think? Do you agree that we should carry on drinking milk? Have you given up milk? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this controversial topic.

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Tom is the owner and operator of Free Fitness Tips and Best Fitness PLR. He has a keen interest in health and fitness and has been writing about that very topic on this website since 2007. He stays fit and healthy by going to the gym at least four times a week and eating fresh, natural foods most of the time. You can find out more about Tom by clicking here. Alternatively, you can follow Tom via Facebook, , Twitter, Pinterest and YouTube or follow this blog via RSS.

Comments

  1. Milk will indeed help one to lose weight but only if one consumes milk that is unpasturized. If one buys the traditional “milk” at the grocery store all one is getting is milk juice because all the good stuff has been pasturized out of if. Nothing is wrong with unpasturized milk but we as a society have been brain washed into thinking that we’ll become sick, develop milk intolerance/allergies or worse, die by drinking unpasterized milk. People allergic to milk or who are considered lactose intolerant can actually drink milk that has been unpasturized because the things in the milk are there that make the milk digestable, but when it’s pasturized, all that is taken out, and people can’t stomach it. Then allergies occur or people become lactose intolerant.
    Unpasturized milk is hard to find, and won’t be found in the traditional grocery stores. It is more expensive than moo juice. However, there are places that do see real milk. It will help you to lose weight if used as part of a regular diet high in protein and fat, low in carbs. I can’t speak too much about losing weight because I’m still quite over weight (obese) myself.

    I recently tried unpasturized milk for two months. My whole GI track thought I was playing tricks on it. It certainly wasn’t used to the real thing. After the shock of drinking “real milk” I actually enjoyed my milk a whole lot more. It was so creamy, tasted so much better in cereal, and in my morning coffee. But it has so many more benefits. Not sure of this, anyone can check out this same information at HSI.com (Health Science Institute). They report on the real facts as well on what isn’t being told to the american people concerning our food, medications, etc.

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    Tom Reply:

    Hey Beverly – Thanks for the heads up. I’ve not really done any research into unpasteurised milk but it is definitely a topic for the future.

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  2. Milk in small quantities does definitely help you to lose weight!

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    Tom Reply:

    Thanks for the comment Andreas but please refrain from linking within your comment unless it is relevant.

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  3. Hi, I drink 8 oz of 1% milk every morning, and have a carton of yogurt later in the day, and i am not fat! I am 5′ 5″,and weigh 144 lb with a flat tummy.I sometimes have a small cup of cocoa made with milk at bedtime, and that doesn’t cause me to gain weight either. I won’t give it up any time soon! Our 3 teenage kids drink 2 glasses a day, and they are not fat either. One of the boys is so thin you would think I don’t feed him!!!!

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    Tom Reply:

    Thanks for the comment Denise. Glad to hear you are a fan of milk.

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  4. I too read a lot of conflicting research about milk. Some say milk is mucous forming because it is hard to get digested because milk protein is not designed for humans. I personally like to take the advise of my own body. My body never sits well with milk. Although, I haven’t had any adverse intolerance problems, I do have some issues with lactose. I agree with Beverly though. I bet unpasteurized milk has a lot of digestive friendly organisms that will actually help break down lactose more effectively.

    Natural foods are not really bad. I stick alkaline fruits and veggies, whole grains, lean meats etc for my calcium and protein requirements though.

    Navyatha.

    [Reply]

    Tom Reply:

    Thanks for your comments Navyatha. Going forward please can you use your actual name and not your website keywords when making comments. I have edited your existing comments but in the future please stick to this rule.

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  5. Alright, I’ll keep that in mind. Sorry about that. I didn’t think you would mind. Anyway, I do like the information you provide on your site. Keep up the good work.

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    Tom Reply:

    No problem Navyatha. I don’t mind giving people a link back if they make a quality comment but I want the comments to be by real people – not a bunch of keywords they are trying to rank their website for.

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  6. Brittania Thompson says:

    I avoided and eliminated ALL dairy from my diet about 2 years ago on the advice of a friend, who competes in body posing/building contests. She said that she was having a hard time getting her “six pack” to show through and her trainer told her to cut the diary from her diet. She did just that, and within 6 weeks her fat level on her abdominals drastically reduced and her abs were cut and defined and showed 10x’s better than when she was drinkind dairy. On her advice, I eliminated dairy and replaced it with Soy for 1 month. I eliminated ALL Dairy, no yogurt, cheese, ice cream, milk. It wasn’t that bad either, I really didn’t miss it. In one MONTH, I lost 7 lbs! I changed NOTHING else but the elimination of Dairy. In fact, 4 lbs of that weight loss was gone 8 days AFTER I eliminated dairy. the remaining 3 lbs came off at a rate of 1 lb a week. I didn’t work out any harder, I didnt avoid any other foods. Only dairy. I of course didn’t stick to it, and now I am seriously considering going back to a Dairy free diet. I do notice when I drink Milk or eat ice cream or eat cheese, I feel bloated, I get very gassy and my stomach hurts a little bit. I also read a article a several years ago that showed evidence that humans cannot break down Cows milk in the digestive system. I am going to hunt that article down along with the other 3 I read as well just last year. I guess its a matter of opinion and it depends on the persons body. But for me, I believe dairy plays a role in my inability to lose those “few extra pounds.”.

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    Tom Reply:

    Hi Brittania – That’s an amazing result. I’ve heard a lot of people have success with cutting dairy out of their diet. I personally try to moderate my dairy intake as it is rich in calories but I think it’s a great source of healthy fats and fat soluble vitamins, so I would never want to eliminate it fro my diet.

    As you say, it’s down to personal opinion and what works best for you. There’s no one size fits all approach when it comes to fitness and weight loss.

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