Thursday, April 15, 2021
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The Health Journal: The great milk debate

The See Results  series has covered proper exercise, eating good foods, nipping cravings and keeping an eye on ingredients. In the final installment, we will consider how milk plays a critical role in seeing results.

Some professionals are at odds whether milk is good for people trying to lose weight. If it is good for weight loss, what kind of milk is most beneficial?

There’s a wide variety of milk to choose from. Almond, soy, rice and coconut milks are taking homes by storm these days. But, even those who choose to stick to old-fashioned cow’s milk seem to be torn over whether to drink whole, 2 percent, 1 percent or skim.

UMKC personal trainer Shannon Hutsler believes  plant-based milk is best.

“Breast milk was made for babies,” she said. “Cow’s milk was made for baby cows. There are a lot of hormones in cow’s milk that I wonder if humans are supposed to be drinking. I mean, we don’t give breast milk to adults, either. I’m a coconut milk drinker.”

The theory makes sense, but Tiffany Moran, clinical supervisor of Truman Medical Center’s Women Infants Children (WIC) program in the Grandview location, disagrees.

“Cows are living creatures just like humans,” Moran said. “Plants are alive, but they’re just that: plants. Because they’re of a different species, plant-based milks like coconut, almond and soy are not going to have all of the nutritional values that we as people need. They’re lower in calories, but they don’t all have the nutritional value as cow’s milk.”

UMKC Director of Strength and Conditioning Paul Arndorfer said that chocolate milk is a great post-workout protein supplement for muscle repair and to ensure the calorie goal is reached.

He said the body has 20 minutes to repair the muscle, and  protein supplements are safe if an athlete isn’t going to be able to eat before the 20 minutes run out.

“[It’s] much cheaper than buying protein shakes and supplements,” Arndorfer said.

For weight loss, there are diverging professional opinions.

To find out what’s right for you, consider the goals. Analyze how the nutritional factors, calories and sugars may affect what is to be achieved.

Start trying different milks and pay attention to how you feel and how your weight is altered by the different choices until you find one that is most beneficial for your body’s needs.

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