Why should I stop drinking whole milk?

Toby Smithson
Nutrition & Dietetics

Skim milk has all of the same nutrients as whole milk but without extra fat. If whole milk is not homogenized to reduce the size of fat particles, it naturally separates into skim milk with the cream layer on top. Skim milk has the same amount of calcium, vitamin D, riboflavin, and protein as whole milk does. However, skim milk is a better dietary choice for healthy heart and healthy weight since it has less calories, saturated fat, and cholesterol. A cup of skim milk has 12 grams of carbohydrate, 8 grams of protein, 0 grams of fat, and 128 mg of sodium. Therefore the only nutrition you are missing out from drinking skim milk instead of whole milk is fat and calories.

Edward Phillips
Physical Therapy
Getting off whole milk not only reduces saturated fat in your diet, it shaves off calories. Saturated fat drives up your total cholesterol and tips the balance of cholesterol in your body toward low-density lipoproteins (LDL), which help form coronary artery blockages, the hallmark of heart disease. While you can't avoid saturated fat entirely -- even healthy fat sources have small amounts of it -- aim to limit it to 10% or less of your daily diet. An 8-ounce glass of whole milk has 8 to 9 grams of saturated fat and 149 to 156 calories, depending on overall percentage of fat; 8 ounces of low-fat 1% milk has 1.6 grams of saturated fat and 102 calories; 8 ounces of nonfat milk has 0.3 grams of saturated fat and 86 calories.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.