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Why You Should be Drinking More Milk

Updated on November 14, 2014
A delicious glass of milk.
A delicious glass of milk. | Source

The only days in my life that I've gone without a glass of milk were the ten I spent in Hong Kong. The trip was incredible. The lack of milk was not.

When I was a kid, it was milk with every meal. (Which is why the things I ate a lot as a kid--Chinese food and pizza, as my mother was not much of a cook--just don't taste right without a good glass of milk, much to the confusion of others).

I've been amazed, in my adult life, at how few people keep a jug of milk in their fridge. The bottom line is, look: if you're not allergic or severely lactose intolerant (Lactaid is a thing, guys!) you have no excuse for not fitting milk into your diet. Here's why.

How I feel when I drink milk.
How I feel when I drink milk.

Milk has Tons of Vitamins and Minerals

So this one is the most obvious. Anyone who doesn't know milk is teeming with calcium and vitamin D is probably under the age of five, or doesn't know what the word teeming means.

Here are the nutrition facts for one cup of 1% milk.

Nutrition Facts: 1 Cup of 1% Milk
Nutrition Facts: 1 Cup of 1% Milk | Source

For women especially, calcium is crucial, more and more so as you get older. You probably know that calcium and vitamin D are the most important nutritional supporters of bone health. What you might not know is how important it is to take the two together in order for your body to absorb them properly.

Here's a video from WebMD explaining why.

Taking Vitamin D and Calcium Together--WebMD

Milk Is a Great Source of Water

It's a well-known fact that most of us aren't drinking enough water. People are always giving you tricks for how to make water more exciting. Try sparkling water! Try squeezing some lemon into it! Try infusing it with a fruit salad!

Or you can just drink milk, which is 87% water.

So it makes sense that...

Athlete drinking milk for hydration
Athlete drinking milk for hydration | Source

Milk is One of the Best Hydrators

Feeling dehydrated? The presence of potassium and a little bit of sodium in milk, along with the high percentage of water, make it a great hydrator. It's universally agreed that it's a better choice than a sports drink (since you're skipping all that sugar), but there are studies proving it's even more effective than WATER. No other beverage has been able to rival the effectiveness of water in non-critical dehydration.

Seriously, it's delicious.

Do you like milkshakes? (Who doesn't?) Then you'll like whole milk. You probably haven't had it since you were a kid, but recent studies are proving that whole milk may actually be better for you. Hooray!

Prefer your milk chocolately? Go for it, as long as you're not watching your sugar. Compare these nutrition facts to those above:

Nutrition Facts: 1% Chocolate Milk
Nutrition Facts: 1% Chocolate Milk | Source

11 more calories per cup? Yeah, you're fine.

Just Not a Fan?

There are tons of ways to sneak milk into your diet if you really can't stand a lovely refreshing glass. Pour some on cereal. Have some in a smoothie. Put it in your oatmeal. Make pudding with it. Use it instead of water in tomato soup. (It's so, so much better that way.)

So what do you think? Milk: Friend or Foe?


Do you like milk?

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