Is Milk Bad for You? Diabetes and Milk
Is cow’s milk good food for people, especially people with diabetes? The American Diabetes Association (ADA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) say yes. Given how I feel about ADA and USDA’s record on nutrition advice, I think we should check for ourselves.
ADA recommends two to three servings of low-fat milk (or other low-fat dairy food such as cheese and yogurt) each day. “Including sources of dairy products in your diet is an easy way to get calcium and high-quality protein,” according to their nutrition page.
USDA says three cups a day for people age nine and up. But what do independent experts say? And what does the data say?
Many disagree about milk’s being healthy. Dr. Mark Hyman, author of The Blood Sugar Solution, wrote,
“I typically advise most of my patients to avoid dairy products completely… From an evolutionary point of view, milk is a strange food for humans. Until 10,000 years ago we didn’t domesticate animals and weren’t able to drink milk… The majority of humans naturally stop producing significant amounts of lactase — the enzyme needed to [deal with] lactose, the sugar in milk — sometime between the ages of two and five.”
OK. So some experts disagree with the government. But we have to start at the beginning. What is milk anyway?
What milk is made of
Milk is food produced by mammal mothers to feed their young. Mammal milks are all similar, but they have important differences in the specific proteins. It may be that cow’s milk is not a good match for most human populations.
Milk has significant amounts of fat, protein Continue reading