Shoul we drink cows` milk?

By TaylorG

Cow’s milk is a daily staple for many people and has been for millennia. While it’s still a popular food, recent studies suggest milk may have harmful effects on the body. Other research, however, points out the health benefits of dairy.

So, what’s the truth? Read on to learn about the pros and cons of milk, as well as some alternatives you may want to consider if you can’t tolerate milk or choose not to drink it.

Nutrients in milk

Milk is considered a whole food. It provides 18 out of 22Trusted Source essential nutrients.


Amount per 1 cup (244 grams) of whole milkTrusted Source

Percentage of recommended daily amount (RDA)


276 mg



12 mcg



24 mg



205 mg



322 mg


Vitamin A

112 mcg


Vitamin B-12

1.10 mcg



0.90 mg



7–8 grams (casein and whey)


Milk also provides:

  • iron
  • selenium
  • vitamin B-6
  • vitamin E
  • vitamin K
  • niacin
  • thiamin
  • riboflavin

Fat content varies. Whole milk contains more fatTrusted Source than other types:

  • saturated fats: 4.5 grams
  • unsaturated fats: 1.9 grams
  • cholesterol: 24 milligrams (mg)

Benefits of milk

Appetite control

Drinking milk hasn’t been linked to weight gain or obesity, and it may help curb appetite. A 2013 study of 49 peopleTrusted Source showed that dairy helped people feel fuller and reduced how much fat they ate overall.

Some studiesTrusted Source have shown that full fat dairy intake is associated with lower body weight. And some have shownTrusted Source that dairy intake, in general, may prevent weight gain.

Bone development

Milk may help improve weight and bone density in children, according to a 2016 study. It also reduces the risk of childhood fractures.

Research shows that pregnant women who ate a healthy diet that included plenty of dairy- and calcium-rich foods had children with better bone growth and mass, compared with women who followed less healthy diets.

Milk also provides proteins that are necessary to build and maintain healthy bones, teeth, and muscle. A cup of milk provides around 7 to 8 gramsTrusted Source of casein and whey proteins.

Bone and dental health

A cup of milk contains almost 30 percent of the daily requirement of calcium for adults. Milk also contains potassium and magnesium. These minerals are important for healthy bones and teeth.

Dairy provides almost 50 percentTrusted Source of the calcium in a typical American diet.

Most milk has added vitamin D. A cup of fortified milk contains about 15 percentTrusted Source of the recommended daily amount. Vitamin D is an important vitamin that plays many roles in the body, including promoting calcium absorption and bone mineralization.

Diabetes prevention

Type 2 diabetes is a disease characterized by high blood sugar levels. Diabetes can increase your risk for:

  • heart disease
  • stroke
  • kidney disease

Several studies have found that drinking milk may help prevent type 2 diabetes in adults. This may be because milk proteins improve your blood sugar balance.

Heart health

Milk fat may help raise levels of HDL (good) cholesterol. Having healthy HDL cholesterol levels may preventTrusted Source heart disease and stroke.

Additionally, milk is a good source of potassium. This mineral helps regulate blood pressure.

Pastured or grass-fed cows make milk with more omega-3 fatty acids and conjugated linoleic acid. These fats help protect heart and blood vessel health.

Negative side effects of milk


A 2016 study found that teenagers with acne drank higher amounts of low fat or skim milk. Dairy may also trigger adult acne.

Other studiesTrusted Source have linked acne to skim and low fat milk. This may be due to milk’s influence on certain hormones, including insulin and insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1).

More research is needed to explore the diet-acne connection.

Other skin conditions

Some foods may worsen eczema, including milk and dairy, according to a clinical reviewTrusted Source.

However, a 2018 study found that pregnant and breastfeeding women who added a probiotic to their diet reduced their child’s risk for eczema and other food-related allergic reactions.

Dairy may also be a trigger food for some adults with rosacea. On the other hand, a recent studyTrusted Source suggests that dairy may actually have a positive effect on rosacea.


Up to 5 percent of children have a milk allergy, estimate some experts. It can cause skin reactions, such as eczema, and gut symptoms, such as:

  • colic
  • constipation
  • diarrhea

Other serious reactions include:

  • anaphylaxis
  • wheezing
  • difficulty breathing
  • bloody stool

Children may grow out of a milk allergy. Adults can also develop a milk allergy.

Bone fractures

Drinking three or more glasses of milk a day may increase the risk of bone fractures in women.

ResearchTrusted Source found that this may be due to a sugar called D-galactose in milk. However, the study did explain that further research is needed before dietary recommendations are made.

Another studyTrusted Source showed that bone fractures in older adults due to osteoporosis are highest in areas that consume more dairy, animal protein, and calcium.


Excess calcium from milk and other foods may increase the riskTrusted Source of prostate cancer. Milk sugars may be linked to a slightly higher risk of ovarian cancer.

Lactose intolerance

Cow’s milk has a higher amount of lactose than milk from other animals. A 2015 reviewTrusted Source estimates 65 to 70 percent of the world’s population has some form of lactose intolerance. Most people with this condition can safely add small amounts of dairy to their diet.

Alternatives to milk

Cow’s milk alternatives for infants and toddlers with milk protein allergies include:





Best source of nutrition

Not all women can breastfeed

Hypoallergenic formulas

Produced with enzymes to break down milk proteins

Processing may damage other nutrients

Amino acid formulas

Least likely to cause an allergic reaction

Processing may damage other nutrients

Soy-based formulas

Fortified to be nutritionally complete

Some may develop an allergy to soy

Plant and nut-based milks are suitable for individuals who are lactose intolerant or vegan include:




Soy milk

Contains similar amount of proteins; half the carbs and fats of whole milk

Contains plant estrogens and hormones

Almond milk

Low fat; high calcium (if enriched); high vitamin E

Low protein; contains phytic acid (hinders mineral absorption)

Coconut milk

Low calories and carbs; half the fat

No protein; high saturated fats

Oat milk

Lower in fat; high fiber

High carbs; low protein

Cashew milk

Low calories and fat

Low protein; fewer nutrients

Hemp milk

Low calories and carbs; high essential fatty acids

Low protein (though more than other plant-based milks)

Rice milk

Low fat

Low protein and nutrients; high carbs

Quinoa milk

Low fat, calories, and carbs

Low protein

The takeaway

Milk is naturally packed with essential nutrients in a convenient and accessible form. Drinking milk is particularly important for children. It may help you and your child maintain good health.

Milk nutrition varies. Milk from grass-fed or pastured cows provides more beneficial fats and higher amounts of some vitamins.

More research is needed on the amount of milk that’s most beneficial and the effects of antibiotics and artificial hormones given to dairy cows.

It’s best to choose organic milk from cows that are free of growth hormones. Milk alternatives can also be part of a healthy, balanced diet.


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By Daniel Schriefer• 1 month 1 week ago.
Daniel Schriefer

Camel milk together with three dates three times a day is much better!

By goodlittleboy• 1 month 1 week ago.

While you took out so much time and went through the pains of posting this article, you did not bother to check the subject line which carries several grammar mistakes.

Possibly, you simply copy/pasted the article from some website and I guess your English is not up to the level where you can spot simple grammar mistakes. Keeping aside your knowledge of English grammar, if you would have used Word document to check your article, it would have pointed out the glaring mistakes in your subject line.

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