New study may spoil your milk drinking

New study may spoil your milk drinking

“Milk. It does a body good.” A famous tagline you’ve probably heard, or were told by a parent at dinner to “drink more milk so you can grow big and strong!”

But now, a new study, published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), suggests we might need to reconsider the benefits of milk consumption.

According to the study, which tracked more than 100,000 Swedish men and women for up to 23 years, women who drank three glasses of milk or more a day (the recommended amount for U.S. adults) nearly doubled the risk of death and cardiovascular disease, compared to those women that drank one or less glasses per day.

“This study should not change anyone’s diet habit just yet,” warns Dr. Robert King an internal medicine physician with Advocate Medical Group in Westmont, Ill. “More research needs to be done in order to fully understand the impact that milk has on our bodies. There could be a number of additional reasons for these results, but it is certainly worth looking into to see if there is something in our diet that does need to be changed.”

It is important to note, this study does not say that milk is some sort of poisonous material we are placing into our bodies, but this does give cause for us to potentially reconsider the amount we consume. Many people take milk to gain calcium and other nutritional reasons. Milk is a source of calcium, but there are other options such as kale, almonds, and even Cheerios that can provide our bodies with needed calcium.

“A balanced diet is always a good choice,” Dr. King says. “I don’t know too many adults that make room for three glasses of milk or more a day, so it would be interesting to see the effect that a glass or two has on people. However, if you are concerned, almond milk is a great alternative to dairy milk.”

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  1. Calcium is so important for your daily health, but it’s quite interesting how these participants who drank three glasses of milk a day were more likely at risk of death and cardiovascular disease.

  2. Finally, a quote from an Advocate staff member that is not 100% in step with the “findings.” This is quite rare to see.

  3. Katie Renz

    3 glasses a day of milk is a lot of milk! Personally I love almond milk, coconut milk and flax milk. They taste great and have plenty of calcium.

  4. Are they drinking whole milk or lowfat? Maybe there’s a link between the calcium and heart disease, and if that’s the case, substituting other calcium sources won’t change the outcomes. They’ll have the strongest bones of the heart disease corpses.

    Studying only 100,000 people of the same culture is hardly reliable for drawing the conclusion that it’s the milk that’s the cause. I’m sure that there are numerous cultural commonalities that may be contributing factors.

    Don’t give up your milk yet!

  5. Why would we ever think drinking another animal’s milk would be good for us?

  6. Dr. Ashwani Garg

    Thanks for posting – Almond milk only has 30 calories per serving as opposed to cow milk, at 100 calories! Consider the study showed greater amount of inflammatory markers in the bodies of people who drank the most milk – milk causes inflammation, and it’s not the dairy fat that they implicated, it’s the lactose! Lactose-free milk isn’t actually lactose-free, it has lactase added to it. Consider cheese which is 70% fat, which is not good for you because it’s all saturated. So, I would tell patients to eat their oatmeal, leave out the milk, and instead of yogurt, eat oats and berries which is more filling and more healthy. Milk is not consumed by most of the world’s population. Milk also contributes to the body’s acidity and acidity is what causes our kidneys to kick out calcium and can actually lead to kidney stones. World Health Organization recognizes the “calcium paradox” and recognizes that many cultures consume very little calcium and have the lowest osteoporosis rate. Most people in the world actually are lactose intolerant, and do just fine with no milk or milk substitutes. It’s time to actually rethink dairy. Give it 1 month without dairy, and instead consume fruits, water, oats, and salad. If you must have a beverage, don’t drink tea or coffee which also kicks out your calcium and electrolytes, and acidifies your body, but drink almond or flax milk, or the other plant-milk substitutes. Your body will thank you.

  7. I grew up on milk… and gluten, and many other products that are questionable today. It is so hard to keep up with what is “healthy” to eat and drink today!

  8. Just another reminder that with anything we consume, moderation is key! Interesting information I would have never thought of with all the “Got Milk” campaigns.

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health enews Staff
health enews Staff

health enews staff is a group of experienced writers from our Advocate Aurora Health sites, which also includes freelance or intern writers.