Learn how adding skim milk to your diet can help you build muscle, strengthen bones and maybe even lose some body fat along the way.
“Milk - it does a body good” has a new meaning for people looking to add muscle, stave-off bone loss and reduce body fat.
A flurry of research — albeit, mostly funded by the dairy industry — over the past few years has suggested that including skim milk or fat-free milk into your diet can actually help you lose weight. But aside from the weight loss claims (which we’ll take a look at later), there are additional reasons that including skim milk in your diet can keep you fit, trim and healthy.
What is Skim Milk?
Skim milk is whole milk from dairy cows that has most or all of it’s fat removed.
Traditionally, this was done by letting milk settle, and then “skimming” the fat off the top of the milk. What is left is the protein-rich, low-fat liquid below the layer of fat. In modern milk processing, the de-fatting process is done with centrifuges (basically the milk is spun around inside a big stainless steel tank and the fat is separated and drained off.)
Skim milk (also labeled as “fat-free milk” or “non-fat” milk) generally has less than 0.5 percent milk fat. Low-fat, semi-skimmed milk or “1% milk” has between 1 and 2 percent fat. For comparisons sake, whole cows milk has around 3.5 percent fat, or 7.9 grams of fat (4.6 grams of which are the “bad” saturated type of fat) in a 1 cup (16 oz) serving. In terms of calories, whole milk weighs in at 147 calories, in comparison to the 91 calories in skim milk.
Clearly choosing skim milk over whole or even 2% milk makes the most sense from a fat and calorie perspective.
But what about the difference in nutrition between skim milk and whole milk? Does the skimming process remove any nutrients?
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