Monday, February 25, 2013

Milk isn't just for kids...adults need it for strong bones too!

“Does skim milk really taste like water?”

“If I don’t want to drink full fat milk, should I just skip it all together?”
Surprisingly, these are two of the questions my dad asked me tonight when the topic of milk came up. Keep in mind my dad isn’t from a farm and his only connection to the farm is his children (it’s the other side of the family that has the farm). He also asked if skim milk has the same nutrients as two percent or whole milk. The answer is yes. All milk—regardless of fat content—has the same nine essential nutrients.  As for the answers to the first two questions: skim milk is not as thick as whole milk, but it is much more nutritious than water; and if someone doesn’t want to drink whole milk, there are also 2 percent, 1 percent and skim options available, in a variety of flavors as well. Again, all varieties of milk contain the same nine essential nutrients.

This topic came up when dad mentioned his 89-year-old father doesn’t eat enough and doesn’t get enough protein. Milk is the first thing that came to mind. The protein in milk will help his muscles, while calcium and vitamin D help prevent bones from breaking. He’s taken a few falls in the last few years, so this is important. Dad also mentioned that grandpa loves chocolate milk shakes. My solution: whole chocolate milk. It’s creamy like a milkshake and has calcium, vitamin D, protein and five other nutrients that will keep him in good health—not to mention chocolate. Dad seemed surprised. Again, remember he didn’t grow up around farming and really doesn’t know much about it or about the nutritional value of milk. Apparently he was not paying attention during all those dairy princess speeches about milk, but that’s a story for another day.  

I was surprised this topic came up with my own family of all people, but I’m happy I was able to provide them with some facts about one of my favorite beverages.

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