Timeless Nutrition Tips...
Milk is often referred to as a complete food and is one of our most widely used ingredients. Milk, cheese and yogurt provide essential nutrients such as calcium, potassium, vitamin D and protein. These nutrients help build and maintain bone mass and may reduce risk for the bone-thinning disease, osteoporosis.
According to government estimates, dairy foods (excluding butter) provide the following percentages of nutrients available in the nation’s food supply.
- 73 percent of the calcium.
- 33 percent of the phosphorus.
- 31 percent of the riboflavin.
- 19 percent of the protein.
- 16 percent of the magnesium.
- 21 percent of vitamin B12.
- 17 percent of vitamin A.
- 10 percent of vitamin B6.
- Appreciable amounts of vitamin D (if fortified) and niacin equivalents.
Milk and other milk products contributed only 9 percent of the total calories available. These foods are nutrient-dense foods, providing a high concentration of many nutrients in relation to their calories.
The nutrient content of flavored milk products such as chocolate milk is similar to that of the corresponding unflavored milk. The major exceptions are the higher contents of carbohydrate and calories in chocolate milk due to the addition of sucrose and other nutritive sweeteners. In general, chocolate milk products have about 60 more calories than their unflavored counterparts. For information on the nutrient content of other milks, refer to USDAs Nutrient Database.
Calcium Rich Milk
The main milks that we consume are cow’s, goat’s and sheep’s milk. Nowadays we have the option of using “milks” that are non-dairy such as soya, rice and oat milks. Skim milk contains only half the calories of full fat milk but is nutritionally much the same. Coconut milk is made using regular milk. To make your own coconut milk, take 1 cup non fat milk, 1 cup water and 1 cup grated, unsweetened coconut and combine in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave 3 minutes at medium heat. Let cool, then strain through a fine sieve, pressing hard on the coconut.
Specific Health Benefits of Milk Products
- Intake of fluid milk has been demonstrated to reduce the risk of osteoporosis, hypertension, and colon cancer.
- Drinking milk may help to reduce the risk of kidney stones. A recent epidemiological study of more than 81,000 women with no history of kidney stones links intake of nonfat milk with decreased risk of colon cancer.
- Milk intake may help to reduce the risk of tooth decay by acting as a substitute for saliva. In addition to providing moisture which helps clear cavity-promoting substances (simple sugars) from the oral cavity, milk buffers oral acids. It reduces the solubility of tooth enamel, and helps to re-mineralize tooth enamel.
- Consuming chocolate milk improves children’s nutrient intake. Moreover, there is no scientific evidence that chocolate milk, because of its sugar content, contributes to dental caries. On the contrary, because chocolate milk is liquid and cleared relatively quickly from the mouth, it may be less cariogenic than other sugar-containing foods (raisins, candy) that adhere to tooth surfaces. Also, several components in chocolate milk, such as cocoa, milk fat, calcium, and phosphorus, may protect against dental caries.
Easy Ways to Drink Your Milk
One of the easiest ways to get your 3 glasses a day is to drink a glass of lowfat or fat free milk with every meal. But feel free to think outside the glass.
You can add up the ounces of milk you have throughout the day - on your cereal (4 ounces), in your tomato soup (8 ounces) or in your caffe latte in the morning (10 ounces or more for a large). Or enjoy 8 ounces or more by whipping up a fruit smoothie made with milk.
- By-pass the bagel at breakfast and have a bowl of cereal and milk instead.
- Grab a carton of milk at the drive-through instead of a soda.
- Substitute milk for water in recipes. Remember, 1 cup equals 8 ounces.
- Satisfy your chocolate cravings with a glass of lowfat chocolate milk instead of a candy bar.
- Sip on a cappuccino or latte instead of black coffee.
- Order a glass of milk on ice at lunch.
- Warm up with a mug of hot chocolate.
- Whip up a smoothie made with milk, fruit and ice for an easy breakfast or afternoon snack.
- Make soups and chowders with milk.
- Milk your dessert with puddings or custards.
- At the coffeehouse order a milk steamer with a shot of syrup.
- Enjoy a banana and glass of milk for a mid-morning snack.
- Add milk to risotto and rice dishes for a creamier texture.
- Order a milk-based soup like corn chowder, potato leek or cream of broccoli soup as a first course at dinner.
- Running errands all day? Grab some milk and a granola bar.
- Freeze strawberry or banana milk in popsicle containers for a tasty "milksicle" treat.
- Having a late dinner? Drink a glass of milk to tame your appetite.
- Instead of dessert, order an after-dinner coffee drink made with milk.
- Order chai tea with milk.
- Take a break with an iced vanilla skim latte.
- Recharge after a work-out with a grab-and-go bottle of lowfat chocolate milk.
- Make a "mocktail" in a goblet with milk and sugar-free hazelnut syrup.
- Too tired to cook? Fix a bowl of whole grain cereal topped with milk and a handful of berries for a no-fuss, nutrient-packed dinner.
- Make some old-fashioned oats with milk instead of water.
Make it Quick
- Order a latte made with fat-free or low fat milk.
- Make oatmeal or tomato soup with milk instead of water.
- Stock up on cheese sticks, reduced or non-fat yogurt cups and yogurt drinks for calcium-rich snacks.
- Top fruit with your favorite yogurt for a homemade parfait dessert.
Did You Know?
Studies showed that those who drank a glass of fat free milk before lunch experienced decreased appetite and calorie intake compared to those who drank fruit juice.
Doctors aren’t sure why, but applying a milk compress to a cold sore may help it heal more quickly. Just dip a washcloth or handkerchief in milk, apply it to the sore for five seconds, then remove it for another five. Continue the process for five minutes. Repeat it every 3 to 4 hours, rinsing your skin between treatments.
Bites From History
- In 1919, milk was 15 cents a quart.
- After prohibition in 1933, milk was 10 cents a quart.