Whole Milk Linked to ... Skinny People?

Healthy dairy choices getting more complicated
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 16, 2014 7:57 AM CST
Whole Milk Linked to ... Skinny People?
Figuring out the healthiest milk for you may be more complicated than it seems.   (Shutterstock)

Drinking fattier milk will make us fatter ourselves, right? Maybe not. New research reported by NPR suggests that whole milk is actually linked to lower weight. A study by Swedish experts found that, over a 12-year period, middle-aged men who used whole milk, cream, and butter had a lower risk of becoming obese than did peers who avoided fattier dairy products. Meanwhile, a European review of 16 studies found most of them showed a lower risk of obesity among people consuming dairy products high in fat. What's more, a study last year pointed to more weight gain in kids who drank low-fat milk.

"We continue to see more and more data coming out (suggesting) consumption of whole-milk dairy products is associated with reduced body fat," a National Dairy Council executive tells NPR. Why? It could be because we feel full more quickly after consuming whole-milk products, resulting in less eating. The phenomenon could also be tied to "bioactive substances in the milk fat," says the exec; those substances may help us burn off the fat. But you may not want to reach for the richer stuff just yet: The saturated fat in whole milk could boost heart risk, a particular concern for those with high cholesterol. In short, notes Greatist via Forbes, "Choosing between whole, skim, or low-fat milk is largely a matter of personal choice in terms of diet, use, and preference." Confused? The site offers a handy milk comparison chart. (Read more milk stories.)

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