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Dutchess_III's avatar

How important do you think it is to have milk in your diet?

Asked by Dutchess_III (42452points) January 3rd, 2017

As asked.

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30 Answers

zenvelo's avatar

Important until adolescence for humans. After that, there are better ways to get protein without all the sugar.

Dutchess_III's avatar

But what about those historical cultures that didn’t have access to milk?

SergeantQueen's avatar

It contains a ton of nutrients like calcium, magnesium, potassium and phosphorus. Each of these nutrients help the body carry calcium to the bone. It can also help keep skin and eyes healthy. (
Milk isn’t a requirement, it isn’t going to make you super weak if you don’t drink it. There are supplements you can take to get the same benefits. It’s just a cheaper way and easier because you’d have to take multiple supplements to get the same benefit versus drinking one or two glasses of milk a day. Also, there are certain proteins, such as casein, which are only found in milk.
Edit: People who didn’t or don’t have access to milk are still able to get the supplements in other ways, it doesn’t have to be in pill form. You can survive without calcium. And Casein isn’t a vital protein.

Dutchess_III's avatar

FWIW, I do drink milk.

I just wonder, in general I guess, how in the world human kind ever existed without all the suppliements and yadda yadda yadda we have today. Until quite recently, the Inuits, for example, didn’t have access to ANY fruits or vegetables, much less milk. They ate mostly fish and whale.

SergeantQueen's avatar

That’s interesting. Could be a genetic thing. Like they haven’t had access to fruits and vegetables for so long, that their body was just naturally able to function without it. I don’t know every vitamin fruits and vegetables offer, but I know some can be taken without pills and all that, like Vitamin D which you can get from being out in the sun.

Dutchess_III's avatar

And the Inuits were covered head to toe! They didn’t get much sun! But I bet there was lots of vitamin D in their diet anyway.
I wonder if they got scurvy a lot?

SergeantQueen's avatar

I wouldn’t doubt that some of them did.

tinyfaery's avatar


As a vegan, I consume no dairy products. Vegan kids do not need dairy either.

In fact, most people are lactose intolerant.

And remember, humans are the ONLY species to regularly consume mother’s milk after infancy. And it’s the mothers milk of other species. That’s just fucking weird.

Dutchess_III's avatar

All of our food is fucking weird if you give it too much thought.

Cats and dogs would drink it, if it’s available. I dated a guy in college who grew up on a dairy farm. He was about 10 before he realized cats drink something other than milk. He thought that was ALL they drank.

tinyfaery's avatar

None of my food is weird. Plant based all the way. One can say the meat substitutes are weird, but those are just a process not ingredients.

Cats are lactose intolerant. They might drink it, but they do not digest it well.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I know. I don’t feel my cat milk. It gives her diarrhea.

Mariah's avatar

If you can get calcium into your kids in another way, I think that’s safer than milk. The prevalence of lactose intolerance does seem to show that we weren’t “supposed” to drink cow milk. This is an issue I have recently changed my mind on.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, the kids like milk. We’ve never had any problems.

Mariah's avatar

I like it too but I fear it could have been the cause of my health problems. I went into my concerns more specifically over in your other milk question.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Yes. I read over the wiki description too. How awful.

marinelife's avatar

Dairy, yes, but not milk.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Dairy products are made from milk, @marinelife. Why make the distinction?

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

Important? Not much anymore. We have other foods to accomplish what milk does due to modern distribution of food throughout the continents resulting in many more choices of extra-regional nutrition sources. .

The nutritional importance of milk lies mainly in it’s comparatively high Calcium bioavailablility and vitamin D content, and the role they play in the development of growing bodies. The bioavalibility of Calcium in cow’s milk is much higher than other foods which makes it an excellent source. Vitamin D insufficiency leads to Rickets, a crippling bone disease which can lead to life-long discomfort and infirmity.

This was a huge problem in past especially after the industrial revolution and especially in the urban young living in temporate climate zones with liimited winter sunlight, high-density industrial areas where the sun was blocked by smog, and where fresh foods—especially green leafy vegetables—were unavailabe to the urban poor. Many of the very first social welfare programs in Europe and America involved providing free milk to urban children.

That being said, I love a cold glass of cow’s milk with my meals and have drank it all my life. It is considered a solid food in many dietary circles and helps filly me up. It is also a very efficient and longer-lasting way to cool off in the heat.

Jews have a much higher lactose intolerance than others, as 75% aren’t able to digest milk sugar. Asians, on the other hand, suffer the least lactose intolerance and come in at around 10%. The rest of us lie somewhere in the middle.

I’ve never met a lactose-intolerant cat but I’ve heard there are a lot of them. This seems new to me and I speculate it may be environmental. This is counter to the advertising and childrens books of the past where the finest thing one could do for kitty was to offer them a fresh bowl of milk or cream. My barn cats get as much goat’s milk as they like every morning as a reward for keeping my stalls rodent-free. They love it.

jca's avatar

I think it’s important. I have maybe close to two cups per day in coffee, plus a 5.3 oz container of yogurt per day.

My doctor told me when it comes to deficiencies that affect your bones, you often don’t realize it (unless you have regular blood tests) until your bones start breaking. Then it’s too late. I try to take supplements because my vitamin levels are often low. My calcium levels are usually good, and I believe it’s due to the milk.

BellaB's avatar

I don’t think I’ve had a glass of straight-up cow’s milk in at least 35 years, probably longer than that. I don’t like it and too many people I know have problems because of cow’s milk to even want to mess around with it.

Yogurt and cheese are in my diet – something about the processing seems to make them palatable. Kind of like chocolate milk – the processing changes it enough so some children that can’t have plain milk can have chocolate milk.

Thinking about it – I don’t think I’d offer it to anyone’s children. It’s on par with fruit juices, which I also don’t give to children.

marinelife's avatar

@Dutchess_III Because I eat cheese and Greek yogurt, but do not drink milk.

Dutchess_III's avatar

But cheese and yogurt are made from milk @marinelife. To me it’s like saying, “I eat tomato soup, but I’d never eat a tomato.”

I don’t know anyone in real life who is lactose intolerant, @BellaB. But I also hate those fakey fruit juices, like Sunny D. But I like real orange juice and cranberry juice. I make Popsicles for the kids out of them.

ZEPHYRA's avatar

As an adult, not at all. Actually it could turn out to be more harm than good.

marinelife's avatar

@Dutchess_III Chacun a son gout.

marinelife's avatar

@Dutchess_III Essentially, it means “each to his own taste.”

Dutchess_III's avatar

Oh. Ok. I started to Goggle translate, then I though you were saying something about your son having gout or something!

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