If You Get Milk, Get it Right

            Do you drink milk? If you do, raise your hand high and proud. Unless you have a disease state or condition that prohibits you from doing so, milk is good for us. I highly recommend it.

            But let me ask you another question. Which strength is your choice? Are you a whole milk drinker? How about 2%, 1%, or the non-fat skim milk version? It’s nice that we have choices, but are they all good for us? Unfortunately not.

            In every class that I teach, I ask my patients which type of milk that they drink. Responses run the gamut, as I’m sure it does for those who are reading this blog. And boy do many of us have strong feelings about our favorite choice of this white beverage.

            Here’s what I tell people about milk. If you’re over the age of 2, whole milk should be off the table and out of our glasses. It’s too high in calories and fat (146 calories and 8 grams of fat in a one-cup serving). But if you’re under the age of 2, go for it! Those who are 2% drinkers aren’t off the hook here either. It’s the same refrain as whole milk. It contains too much fat and calories (122 calories and 5 grams of fat in a one-cup serving). But never fear. There are two choices left and they’re good ones.

            If you like 1% milk, enjoy it. It’s not a bad choice with 102 calories and 2 grams of fat. And you can’t beat non-fat (skim) milk with its 90 calories and 0 grams of fat. It’s my milk of choice.

            I already hear the non-fat (skim) milk naysayers. “It’s blue and it tastes like water,” you exclaim. While I don’t see the blue color, I can understand how some may find the taste to be different from the higher fat versions. But, this doesn’t last for long. Ask any non-fat (skim) milk drinker how they now like the taste of whole milk. I guarantee you their faces will twist in the type of grimace that comes with eating something that tastes bad. They’ll likely tell you that the whole milk is “too thick and creamy.” They don’t like it anymore. They’ve lost the taste. We teach ourselves to like things and we can definitely reverse it.

            A serving size of milk is one cup or 8 ounces. So enjoy two to three servings of dairy per day. It’s good for us!

Visit Lisa Tillinger Johansen at www.fastfoodvindication.com and www.consultthedietitian.com, as well as on Facebook at Lisa Tillinger Johansen and on Twitter @LisaTJohansen

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