Hidden uses and nutrional benefits of milk


Kevin Perez/The Skyline View

Various cap colors seperate the different type of milks.

Milk is one of the healthiest and most nutritious beverages today.

However, it is often ignored in favor of the occasional sport drinks or soda. Even though the argument that “milk is the superior drink” has been made before, students still need to be reminded of what milk can do.

A popular misconception is that fat-free or skim milk is healthier than whole milk. This can be true when it comes to weight loss, because one will have fewer fats to work off. However, the dietary fats that are in whole milk can help certain individuals with specific regimens and health conditions. For example, if a person plans to bulk up from their work out, the extra fats in whole milk will help.

The fatty acids essential to our bodies, like omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, are slashed out of whole milk by a significant amount. Comparing the nutrition facts data found in nutritiondata. self.com, 183 mg of omega-3’s are in a cup of whole milk contain, as opposed to fat-free milk’s measly 4.9 mg.

The same story goes for omega-6’s in whole milk, with whole milk containing 293 mg of the fatty acid compared to fat-free milk’s 12.4 mg. Omega-3 and omega-6 goes hand-in-hand in promoting brain function, and normal growth and development.

According to a medical reference guide created by the University of Maryland Medical Center called “Complementary and Alternative Medicine Guide”, a healthy diet requires a balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. It also states that omega-6 can be useful for the following health conditions: diabetic neuropathy, rheumatoid arthritis, allergies, breast cancer and other multiple health conditions.

However, do not discount fat-free milk out of your diet just yet. Fat-free milk has slightly more vitamin A and calcium, while having less Vitamin D than whole milk.

Right now, we are only discussing milk of the “cow” variety but let’s focus on another bovine; the buffalo. Buffalo milk, compared to cow’s milk, has more calcium as well as a better balanced amount of omega-3’s and omega-6’s; at the cost of more calories.

However, there is something in buffalo’s milk that may catch people’s attention; its ability to prevent cancer.

According to the study by Robert G. Jensen called “The Composition of Bovine Milk Lipids: January 1995 to December 2000” buffalo milk has the largest amount of Butyric acid compared to fellow bovine and other animals; that includes humans as well. Based on a study called “Bovine milk in human nutrition – a review,”, Butyric acid is a well-known modulator of gene function, and may also play a role in cancer prevention.

Buffalo milk also contains a small amount of caprylic acids that has been reported to delay tumor growth. The problem about buffalo milk is that it is mundane to the North American market and is typically ignored. There is also the question accessibility of the product.

Different kinds of milk have different kinds of effects. You must know which milk is right for you and must not dismiss the more exotic types of the liquid. It may be essential to be familiar with all the types of milk that is available to us and knowing their benefits is definitely something to be aware of.