This is what you need to know before you order your morning coffee.
Fat is essentially the worst thing you can put in your body, right? Well, not quite.
There’s new research to suggest that we actually should be opting for full fat in our milk, cheese and yoghurt, instead of their skim counterparts.
According to the European Journal of Nutrition, there is little observational evidence that high-fat dairy sources increase obesity or cardiometabolic disease. In fact, this study’s researchers suggested that diets that include high-fat dairy content is inversely associated with the risk of obesity.
Additionaly, the Circulation Journal found that intake of dairy fatty acids is associated with a decreased risk of diabetes. And hey, a creamy cup of coffee is a pretty good place to start, we say!
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But before you go and devour a grande full-fat milk latte (and all of the cheese. Yes, all of it), we asked Dietitian’s Association of Australia spokesperson, accredited practicing dietitian and President of Sports Dietitians Australia, Simone Austin, whether this is all legit – and if it’s fine to step right up and enjoy.
“The biggest message [from these findings] is that milk is not a high fat food,” Austin explains. “It’s still only 3.8 per cent fat. It’s not as high in fat as something like cream, which we would still call a discretionary food at 35 per cent fat.”
So is demonising milk is a little unfair?
“What we are learning from the research, and what we need more research on, is the fact that saturated fat in milk along with all those other components (like protein and calcium) is not acting the same as saturated fat in a commercial biscuit or cake, which would more negatively affect your cholesterol.”
Basically, the way the fat interacts with the other components in milk makes it less harmful than other foods with the same kind of fat element.
Austin also adds that full cream milks are also more satiating, and can stop you from snacking on unhealthy foods. This is because full cream milks are more filling. Unless, of course, you have an allergy or an intolerance to dairy, in which case, you should follow the advice of your health care practitioner, who will be able to advise the best way forward for you.
This is also the case with cheese, which many people often cut out. Austin stresses that the Australian dietary guidelines leave room for cheese, yoghurt and milk in your diet. (Phew.)
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Of course, this is not the go ahead to eat an entire wheel of brie. Instead it’s the cue to live a little and enjoy what you like, as long as it’s within moderation.
“I think there are bigger things to worry about in your diet,” says Austin.
“So include milk – which ever one you like. Most of us don’t have enough calcium in our diets, anyway, so it’s really important to not cut this out.”
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October 26, 201610:10am
nutrition | body+soul
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