Milkin’ It

  • 🥛Does it matter if the milk is organic? Organic milk comes from organic dairy farms. Organic means that the cows receive feed that is free of pesticides. It also means the cows were not treated with antibiotics or growth hormones. I would say yes, it matters.
  • 🥛What is ultra-filtered milk? This one is more of a loaded question, so to speak, as it is actually unloaded and loaded up :). Ultra-filtered milk starts off as nonfat milk, which is then filtered to remove about half of the milk’s water content along with about half of the lactose, or milk sugar, letting the milk protein molecules remain. What you’re left with is essentially concentrated milk — all the protein, plus half the water and half the lactose. But we're not done. This concentrate is then re-diluted with water, but still remains to have a higher protein concentration, so that it ends up with around 13 grams of protein per cup (as opposed to 8 grams per cup for ordinary cow’s milk). Fat is added back to the desired levels followed by the addition of lactase, the enzyme which breaks down the remaining lactose into its component sugars, glucose, and galactose, which are easier to digest than lactose. Then there is the addition of vitamins, with the resulting product containing half the sugars (around 6 grams instead of the usual 13 grams) and nearly twice the protein (13 grams versus 8 grams). Calorie-wise, the numbers balance out, with the added protein making up for the fewer sugars. It is a bit thicker than regular cow’s milk, similar to Greek yogurt being thicker than regular yogurt, due to the excess protein. Yes, it is a highly processed product.
  • 🥛How unhealthy is flavored milk, like chocolate or strawberry milk? These types of milk, no matter the flavor, tend to be higher in added sugar. If you crave one every so often, it surely balances out. If you are closely monitoring your sugar intake, just be sure to check the label so you know how much you are consuming in a serving.
Photo by Kim Gorga on Unsplash
  • Cow’s milk provides 13 essential nutrients per 8-ounce serving. “Essential” means the nutrients must come from your diet, as our bodies do not make them. These nutrients include protein, vitamin D, calcium, vitamin A, phosphorus, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B12, pantothenic acid, potassium, zinc, iodine, and selenium.
  • Cow’s milk is also a good source of protein. If you’re vegetarian, dairy can be an easy way to get more protein.
  • Oat milk has a very different nutrition profile than dairy milk. Oat milk provides fewer nutrients than dairy milk, and most of the nutrients it provides are fortified. That means they’re added during manufacturing, as opposed to occurring naturally. There may be added sugar as well.
  • Then there is the amount and type of protein in oat milk (and other plant-based kinds of milk) versus cow’s milk. Cow’s milk has about twice the protein as oat milk. Protein helps build lean muscle, and getting enough at each meal or snack can help you feel full and satisfied. As you can see from the charts, cow’s milk provides 8 grams of protein in every 8-ounce glass, while the same amount of unsweetened oat milk typically provides 4 grams (though the protein in oat milk varies from brand to brand, so it’s important to check the label). The protein in cow’s milk is also a source of complete, high-quality protein, which means every serving contains a full mix of essential amino acids. Most plant-based protein sources, like oats, are incomplete proteins and missing some of the essential amino acids our bodies need.

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A nutrition expert and middle child, I am writing to promote health and wellbeing, recipes and tips in a relatable, slightly rebellious fashion.

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The Rebellious RD

The Rebellious RD

A nutrition expert and middle child, I am writing to promote health and wellbeing, recipes and tips in a relatable, slightly rebellious fashion.

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