Cow’s Milk and Cholesterol, A Misunderstanding

Cow's Milk and Cholesterol A Misunderstanding
Cow’s milk, cholesterol, and misunderstanding (flickr.com)

Cow’s milk contains 146 calories, 5 grams of saturated fat, and 24 milligrams of cholesterol in 1 8-ounce cup.

Milk is an excellent source of protein and nutrients. Contains essential vitamins and minerals, and provides one-third of the recommended daily intake of calcium,” said Deborah Krivitsky, a nutritionist at Massachusetts General Hospitals, Boston.

Unfortunately, when it comes to cholesterol, cow’s milk has the effect of increasing cholesterol levels.

“High-fat dairy products can get you in trouble,” says John Day, MD, a cardiologist who practices at Intermountain Healthcare, Salt Lake City, Utah.

Saturated fat in food increases bad cholesterol (LDL), which increases the risk of heart disease and stroke.

The saturated fat content in cow’s milk is what makes milk quite at risk of increasing cholesterol levels when consumed.

Therefore, people who are limiting cholesterol intake should not consume cow’s milk.

If you still want to consume milk, then an alternative is low-fat milk or non-fat milk. A cup of non-fat milk contains 83 calories, 5 milligrams of cholesterol, and no saturated fat.

Apart from non-fat milk, several types of non-cow’s milk can be alternatives. Having the same healthy and beneficial ingredients, alternative dairy can be your best option besides cow’s milk.

The first alternative is soy milk. Containing 80 calories and 2 grams of fat per 1 cup, soy milk is an alternative to cow’s milk for those of you who strictly monitor cholesterol levels in the body.

The source of soy milk is a plant. This means no cholesterol and very little saturated fat.

In a cup of soy milk, there are also 7 grams of protein. Based on data from the National Institute of Health, regular consumption of 25 grams of soy protein per day can reduce heart disease risk.

The ability of soy milk is also supported by polyunsaturated fat, minerals, vitamins, and fiber content.

The second alternative is almond milk. “Almonds are heart-healthy,” says John Day, MD, who recommends this fruit for heart patients.

Almond milk contains 30 to 40 calories per 1 cup. The good news is, almond milk does not have saturated fat.

Just like soy milk, because it comes from plants, almond milk does not contain cholesterol. Plus, almond milk contains polyunsaturated fatty acids, which can lower LDL cholesterol.

Other functions of polyunsaturated fatty acids are to reduce inflammation and improve brain cognition.

With its various benefits, almond milk is indeed good for maintaining heart health.

The bad news is that almond milk is low in protein. Thus, almond milk cannot be relied on as a source of protein.