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Milk and Your Perfect Match; Discovering the Right Milk for You

Milk and Your Perfect Match; Discovering the Right Milk for You

-By Aishwarya  Umesh Patil*

Milk is an essential part of the diet in India. Milk is often common in coffee, tea, desserts, and everyday foods. However, there's always controversy about which milk is the best to purchase.

The Indian market offers a variety of milk (Toned milk, double-toned milk, standardized milk and full cream milk), the main difference between these milk variants is their fat content. Regular milk is unavoidable due to its calcium and numerous health benefits. However, it also has a relatively high fat content. Determining which milk best suits your daily lifestyle often comes down to considering your personal preferences and dietary needs. The fat content can vary significantly, so it's important to understand these differences when selecting the right milk for your household.

A key factor in choosing the right milk is understanding the various types available. Buffalo milk is denser than cow and goat milk, with higher levels of protein, fat, and other nutrients (Bekere et al., 2022). However pure buffalo milk is not suitable for daily consumption due to its high content of saturated fats, though ghee and paneer can be derived from the pure form.

Toning is a native Indian process to reduce the fat content in buffalo milk (Rao, 2017). Toned milk available in the market is basically buffalo milk which is diluted or skimmed to reduce the fat content to 3% or less. Diluting milk is an effective way to reduce fat content and increase the quantity, the nutrients remain unaffected. The market has single-toned and double-toned milk variants with progressively lower fat content. Single-toned milk provides about 3% fat and 150-160 calories per glass, which is more suitable for regular consumption. Double-toned milk on the other hand has an even lower percentage of fat, around 1.5% and contains around 120 calories per glass, making it an even healthier option. If you are someone who is health conscious or needs to limit saturated fats in the diet double toned milk is a better choice to include in your diet.

Whole milk/Cow milk also known as full cream milk is nothing about cow milk in its raw, undiluted form, while the nutrients are similar in whole milk and toned milk, the fat percentage varies, providing 6% fat and approximately 150-160 calories/cup. Young children, those building muscles or trying to gain weight can benefit from the extra calories present in whole milk. Skimmed milk contains little to no fat, only around 0.1% fat and 80-90 calories per glass, making it a great choice for those looking to limit their calorie and fat intake, such as those trying to lose weight or manage health conditions like diabetes(Burke et al., 2018).

To conclude the vast array of milk choices can appear overwhelming, but understanding the key differences in fat and caloric content can help guide your selection to best meet your specific dietary and health needs. Incorporating different types of milk into your diet can help provide a balanced intake of nutrients and calories based on your individual requirements. (Paul et al., 2019)(Singha et al., 2023)

Inputs Courtesy:
*Aishwarya Umesh Patil is associated with the Venugram Hospital, Belagavi as a Clinical Dietitian. She has done her post-graduation in NUTRITION & DIETETICS from the Jawahar Lal Nehru Medical College and has published an article, Impact of social media on eating behaviour among adolescents in the KLEU journal and has also presented a research paper at an international symposium in Mysuru. She is also a Guest lecturer at Bhartesh Nursing College in Belagavi.


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