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Milk, Nature's Best Drink

Updated on September 30, 2020
Pamela99 profile image

After 22 years as an RN, I now write about medical issues and new medical advances. Diet, exercise, treatment, and lifestyle are important.

Drink Your Milk


Cow and Goat Milk Nutrients

Different types of milk products have greatly increased in number and variety. There is a big difference in nutrients and fat content in different milks. Whole milk contains 3.25% milk fat with 146 calories in one cup. It also contains saturated fat of 5g which is 23% and cholesterol of 24g at 8% volume.

The most important ingredient is calcium at 28%, with Vitamin A at 5%. This milk also contains sugar of 13g and protein at 8g. Of course, a good cold glass of milk goes great with some warm cookies fresh out of the oven. While we need protein and calcium, there are better choices with regards to calories and saturated fat. Skim milk for instance has only 90 calories, no saturated fat but still contains 12g of sugar.

The AHA recommends 2-3 servings of fat-free or low-fat dairy products for adults, and children should have two or more servings with teenagers and older adults having four servings. Of course, for babies breast milk is always the best choice.

8 Surprising Goat Milk Health Benefits

Types of Milk

Some of the regular milk choices are:

  • Fat-free, zero fat, no-fat or nonfat milk
  • ½ - 1% low-fat milk or light milk
  • Nonfat, skin milk or low-fat dry milk powder
  • Evaporated fat-free milk
  • Buttermilk made fat-free or 1% fat milk
  • Fat-free or low-fat yogurt
  • Frozen fat-free or low-fat yogurt or yoghurt
  • Drinks made with fat-free or 1% fat milk and cocoa (or other low-fat drink powders)
  • Low-fat cheeses (including dry curd cottage cheese, cottage cheese, low-fat natural cheeses or processed cheeses made with nonfat or low-fat milk with no more than 3 grams of fat per ounce)
  • Fat-free or low-fat ice cream (no more than 3 grams of fat per ½ cup serving.

  • The recommended servings of milk per day are higher now to reflect the revised need for calcium intake. The daily calcium intake for all adults should be 1000 milligrams, and for those above 50 years of age it should increase to 1200 milligrams. For vitamin D the recommended intake should be 400 I.U.s for anyone age 51 and over, and it should be 600 I.U.s for those over 71 years. This is to prevent osteoporosis for olderadults. Children need the calcium and vitamin D for bone growth.

    Goat’s milk is another alternative that is widely used throughout the world and is becoming more popular in the U. S.

    Whole goat’s milk contains about 10 g of fat per 1 cup as compared to cows 8-9 g. It is difficult to find low-fat goats milk. However, the milk does contain more of the essential fatty acids that are easier to digest. It contains less lactose, 13% more calcium,25% more vitamin B6, 47% vitamin A, 134% more potassium and three times more niacin. So, goat’s milk sounds healthierthan cow’s milk.

Substitutes for cows milk

Other Types of Milk Products

I don’t drink milk or eat ice cream because I have asthma and it causes more lung congestion. Many people are also lactose intolerant or have a milk allergy, so they must look for other options. Fortunately there are several other good choices.

Organic Soy milk contains 105 calories in one cup. It only has 2% saturated fat and it has 30% calcium, 9% vitamin A, 6% iron with 9g of sugar. This is clearly a healthier choice, used by many vegetarians or those that can’t tolerate cow’s milk.

Enriched rice milk has 120 calories in 1 cup. There is no saturated fat, and it has 30% calcium, 25% vitamin D, vitamin A 12%, Phosphorus 15%, vitamin B12 25%, iron 4% and sugars 10g. This is clearly another healthy choice.

There are several brands of almond milks on the market. One cup only has 70 calories, with total fat at 2.5%, but none is saturated. It contains 1 g of protein and omega fatty acids. It also contains manganese, selenium and vitamin E. I did not find almond milk that contained calcium.

Coconut milk is becoming very popular. It is a raw a (liquid expressed from grated meat and water). The calories for 1 cup are 552 so obviously this wouldn’t be ideal for weight loss. It has 254% saturated fat, dietary fiber 21%, calcium 4%, vitamin C 11% and iron 22%. It is a nutrient dense food containing omega 3 fats, protein and fiber. When you cook with coconut milk the chemical composition of the oils don’t change, so it doesn’t lose its nutritional benefits like some oils. Since the calories are so high, you might want to take a tbsp. a day to enjoy the benefits of omega 3 fats.

Children Need Milk

How to Make Almond Milk

Ways to Get Milk into the Diet

If you have a family that will not drink much milk there are many recipes that contain milk, such as puddings, like banana cream, rice, etc, custards, macaroni and cheese, cream soups and sauces. There are also smoothies, milk shakes and protein shakes. Look for other recipes to supplement the milk they refuse to drink. Of course, calcium pills that contain vitamin D are available. It is very important to get enough calcium and vitamin D intake at any age.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.


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