Skim Milk Doesn't Help Childhood Obesity

6:45 PM

Finally! Everyone is talking about it! All it took was TIME Magazine to publish the study's results:

Choosing skim milk does not help prevent childhood obesity, evidenced by a lengthy study of over 10,000 children at the University of Virginia.

In fact,
  • When comparing the "heavy" kids to the "normal" weight kids, more of the heavy ones chose 1% milk (over higher fat options)
  • Children drinking 2% milk had lower BMIs than those drinking 1%, and
  • Children choosing low-fat milk had a 57% higher chance of being overweight or obese by age 4, than those who chose higher fat milk
Thank you!

I have never been a fan of this weird skim milk craze. Number one, it tastes like cloudy water. I can't help but think it's a scam by the dairy industry to skim off the expensive cream and sell us the watery leftovers for the same price.

How did fat even become such a bad-guy? Well, it doesn't help that it shares the same name as a jiggly stuff on our middle-sections. Just on nomenclature alone, people assume that dietary fat, in food, must translate to extra pounds on their body. Not the case. As well, it has 9 calories per gram instead of the typical 4, like carbs and protein. And then lastly, it doesn't have the same effect on our fullness that fibre and protein do (eat 200 calories of quinoa, feel full; eat 200 calories of butter, feel hungry).

This is all silly because there are so many types of fat that you can't paint them all with the same brush. And what's more, you're more likely to be clinging to those last pounds you want to lose because of a fat-deficiency, not an over-abundance. I'll explain. Your body needs fat - it's essential. And when you don't give it those healthy fats, it takes whichever fats it can get and keeps them. So if you've been slacking on your walnut intake this week but you're more than willing to spread CheeseWhiz on everything you eat: your body will convert the CheeseWhiz fat to a storage form. If you'd just fill up on healthy fats, your intake of less-healthy fats would be used for energy. No more jiggles.

There's also the issue of vitamin absorption. Every bag of milk you buy (sorry, jug, to my American readers) has some sort of claim about Vitamin A! And Vitamin D! Hurray! But wait - vitamin A and D are fat soluble. They cannot be absorbed in the absence of fat. Where is there an absence of fat? You've got it: skim milk! So those healthful nutrients are literally just for show.

You may or may not be a fan of dairy at all, but I urge everyone to open their eyes about reduced fat milk. Buy some whole milk and TELL me it's not delicious. Or if you're so inclined make some homemade almond milk like I do! No skim variety available.

And if you think a child's diet needs an overhaul, rather than reduce their fats, you can simply try to include more fruits and vegetables. You can only eat so much and if you fill them with the right stuff, obesity won't be on the horizon!

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