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Is Fat Free Milk Healthy?

Apr 22, 2010

Many milk drinkers look to the fat free variety to get their thirst quenched and because milk is low in fat grams and overall calories. However, does a low-fat content mean some of milk's natural health attributes are missing from the final product? There are many good reasons to drink milk, but is the fat free version healthy?

The answer is...yes it is. Fat free milk, otherwise known as skim milk, is the logical choice if you want to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Let's take a closer look at why fat free milk is healthy.

Taste

The first thing a person who does not like skim or fat free milk says is, "I don't like the taste." It can be a tough switch. The different taste is due to the lack of saturated fat. This should lead milk drinkers to ask themselves a crucial question. Should I sacrifice taste for health? Look no further than the American Heart Association (AHA) for the answer. The AHA recommends including 2-3 servings of fat free milk to a healthy, daily diet. Keep your heart in mind as you grow accustom to the different taste. Remember, it is fat that makes that whole milk taste "better."

Saturated Fat Content

The main reason fat free milk is healthier is in its name alone. Low or no fat products are usually better for the body in the long run. The process of making milk fat free involves filtering out all of the fat from the liquid and then putting back a little for taste and nutrition. This careful procedure keeps in mind the potential harmful effects of a high fat diet. According to the USDA, whole milk has a butter fat content of 3.25%. Fat free is 0-0.5 %. The result of a diet that is rich in saturated fat is coronary heart disease and high levels of cholesterol in the body.

Nutritional Value

The milk drinker loses no nutrients or essential proteins by drinking fat free milk. Milk contains protein, calcium and nutrients like potassium, magnesium and vitamins A, B12, D, and K. We spend our entire lives benefiting from milk. Our bones and teeth are stronger because of it. And so are our hearts and eyes. None of these benefits are left out of fat free milk. A normal serving of fat free milk will have 90 calories and less than a half of gram of fat, but it will still have 8 grams of protein. In addition, each vitamin or nutrient is high enough in each serving that a couple glasses of milk a day can help the overall daily values needed for a healthy diet.

Is it Healthy?

The first taste we have as a child is milk and as life goes on we are reminded again and again why milk is key to the overall diet. However, we are also reminded that a diet high in fat is not good for us. With these two considerations in mind, it only makes sense to choose fat free milk. This type of milk remains as the more sensible option when reaching for that glass of milk.

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