Got Milk? Are you ready for Weight Gain?

by Annie on July 3, 2008 · 20 comments

in Eating Healthy,Weight Loss & Body Image

Linday Lohan with Milk Mustache

I love the “Got Milk?” ads of a celebrity with a milk mustache. I do not know whether these celebrities are regular milk drinkers, but they sure make drinking milk look sexy. And they also reinforce the idea that drinking three glasses of milk a day will lead to weight loss. That is as true as a fairy godmother.

Milk does not help us to lose weight!
The National Dairy Council has spent more than $300 million since 2003 in advertising to make us believe that if we consume enough dairy food we will lose weight.

According to LA Times, of the 49 studies on dairy products and weight loss, only 2 studies linked dairy with weight loss and 41 studies with no effect.

The Federal Trade Commission has forced the dairy organizations to stop claiming that drinking milk will promote weight loss. As a matter of fact their new claim is that “studies suggest the nutrients in 3 glasses of lowfat or fat free milk a day can help maintain a healthy weight, plus the protein, along with exercise, helps build muscle for a lean body. So eat right, move more and milk your diet.” Are you sitting here scratching your head at their wording of “eat right and move more?” Basically they recommend you go on a diet for weight loss, but drink our milk.

But calcium might help weight maintenance in menopausal women.
A seven year study from the Women’s Health Initiative has found that menopausal women consuming 1,000 mg of calcium and 400 IU of vitamin D every day are less likely to gain weight or maintain their weight. Some of these women in the study actually lost weight.

Calcium is found in food sources other than milk.
Though we are brainwashed to believe that milk is the healthiest source of calcium, it is not. The amount of calories in a glass of milk is equal to our “treat” for those of us trying to lose weight. Even if we drink the fat free milk, the calories in three glasses will add up.

More nutritional and reduced calorie sources of calcium includes: broccoli, kale, spinach, oranges, tofu, peanuts, peas, black beans, salmon, sardines, Chinese mustard greens, and Chinese cabbage. Google “calcium food source” for more options.

Until next time and thanks for stopping by Small Steps to Health.

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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Sangeeta Sinha July 3, 2008 at 5:49 pm

Talking of milk and all its positives, I had heard a few years’ back or may be read somewhere that milk is excellent for children till 5 yrs of age and not after that.

Well, I believe days are changing, negatives are becoming positives and research works are also changing.

Sangeeta Sinhas last blog post..LOVE & COMPATIBILITY


asithi July 3, 2008 at 7:29 pm

@Sangeeta Sinha – That is the always the case with the health industry. It is a science, but things flip flop around all the time. There will be a research in the next few years stating that milk is the best source of eternal youth or something along that line. We just need to try to incorporate the current health information into our lifestyles once we have validate the claims. Thanks for commenting Sangeeta.


clockworkpink July 3, 2008 at 3:27 pm

Wow that is very deceiving!

clockworkpinks last blog post..Cassette Tape Wallet


asithi July 3, 2008 at 7:30 pm

Thanks for commenting clockworkpink.


Tom Parker July 3, 2008 at 10:28 pm

I think there’s too much conflicting evidence to definitively say whether milk is good or bad for weight loss. For example, this article

cites a study where people actually lost more weight by making dairy products part of their diet.After doing some research on both the positives and negatives of milk for one of my previous blog articles, I came to the conclusion that milk should not be avoided as part of a weight loss diet but consumed in moderation. My slant is that a product as popular as milk is always going to be scrutinised (look at the constantly changing opinions on bottled water vs tap water). However, there aren’t many other natural drinks which provide your body with the nutrients that milk does. It’s not just calcium it provides. A high concentration of valuable nutrients such as Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Vitamin B12 and Potassium (to name a few) are all present in milk.It’s not done me any harm in the past and I have drank it for as long as I can remember so I won’t be giving milk up anytime soon.Tom Parkers last blog post..The Free Fitness Tips Newsletter – June 2008


asithi July 4, 2008 at 11:23 pm

Hi Tom – Welcome back!
Re-reading my post, I realized that it sounds like I am advocating for people to stop drinking milk. That is simply not true. To clarify, I only want people to be aware that drinking the three glasses of milk as advertised by the dairy industry will to lead to weight gain rather than weight loss. I firmly believe that a particular food item should not be ban from a person’s diet, unless they have a history of abusing it. It is very hard to OD on milk. Thank you for pointing this out.


Steve v4.7 July 4, 2008 at 7:19 am

It does seem counterproductive to consume something that is intended to take a creature from birth weight to several hundred pounds in a short period of time. Does any other creature include milk as part of its’ regular diet into adulthood?


asithi July 4, 2008 at 11:33 pm

@Steve v4.7 – Not that I know of. Steve, your comment lead to this half hour discussion I had with my husband on breastfeeding on when is it the appropiate age to stop. And we do not have any kids yet. You hear these stories of women who still breast feed their six year old child. It is just too weird to breast feed your school age child and yet we drink milk from a cow. Thank you for commenting.


MizFit July 4, 2008 at 10:36 am

right or wrong Ive cut way back on the milk and upppped the TUMS for calcium.

life can be one big crapshoot huh?



MizFits last blog post..Happy 4th of July to the ‘merican Mizfits


asithi July 4, 2008 at 11:39 pm

Thank you for commenting MizFit. I hope my new post on DDR answers your questions about the game.


Sandy July 7, 2008 at 1:01 pm

I had fallen prey to the ad campaign the milk industry has been running. I’m glad you wrote this post and have entertained some interesting dialogue in the comments area. I appreciate the information provided.

Sandys last blog post..Ahhh, Summerfest


asithi July 8, 2008 at 2:48 pm

Sandy – Congrats on the new job! And thank you for your comment.


Marc David July 10, 2008 at 3:15 pm

An interesting fact from the USDA’s Economic Research Service shows a vast different between what people ate and drank in 1970 and 2005.

One to take a look at was that people today, drink 10 gallons less milk.

We see more ads but we drink less milk on average.

Wouldn’t be fair to post this comment without a source. So here it is:

Marc Davids last blog post..Poll: How Often Do You Want a Podcast?


asithi July 12, 2008 at 3:17 pm

With so many beverage choices available, that does not surprise me. Look at water. It used to be just plain tap water. Then comes bottled water, then bottled water at exotic locations, now there is vitamin water and sports water like Propel. Thank you for the comment Marc.


AtlantaLady July 5, 2010 at 4:41 pm

Three glasses of milk will lead to weight gain? On what planet? Fat free milk has 70 calories per eight ounces. Fat free Greek yogurt has 20 grams of protein and only 120 calories per eight ounces. How is this fattening? I think the author wants to propagate an urban myth that fat free dairy is somehow making people fat. That’s ridiculous. Do the math.


asithi July 5, 2010 at 9:26 pm

@AtlantaLady – 70 calories x 3 glasses/day x 30 days/month = 6300 calories for month. 6300 calories is the equivalent of 1.8 pounds per month. If someone thinks that drinking 3 glasses a day as advertised by the dairy industry will lead to weight loss, they might be in for a surprise if they do not modify their diet to account for this extra 6300 calories. I am not saying that milk is bad for you, but that the advertising is sneaky. The dairy industry wants you to think that drinking so much milk will help with weight loss when in reality it just gets you to buy more of their product. Please note that their advertising targets the adult demographic, not kids. Thanks for your comment.


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