What You Need to Know About 2% Milk and Your Health?


Kurt Olsen

Your taste receptors may have a predilection for milk, but the wish to make healthier dietary decisions may get in the way. Most of your life, you’ve undoubtedly been taught that drinking low-fat milk is healthier for your health. While selecting reduced fat types of this traditional beverage has advantages, whole milk may not be as terrible as you’ve been made to think. If you’re unsure whether you should consume whole or low-fat milk, speak with a trained nutritionist who can advise you on which is best for your specific health and nutritional requirements.

Comparing the Nutrition

One of the first things to consider when choosing whether to consume whole or 2% milk is the nutritional composition, which compares calories, cholesterol, and other important nutrients. It should come as no news that whole milk contains more calories and cholesterol than 2% milk. However, the changes aren’t that significant. One cup of whole milk contains 150 calories and 8 grams of fat, while one cup of 2% fat milk contains 120 calories and 5 grams of fat. Both contain the same quantity of carbohydrates and protein per cup, 12 and 8 grams, respectively.

The nutrient and mineral composition is also comparable, though 2% milk contains slightly more vitamin A and calcium. It’s essential to observe that some of the vitamin A in low-fat milk is added because removing the fat removes some of the fat-soluble vitamins.

Milk Fat and Heart Health

Because saturated fat is related to increased cholesterol levels and heart disease, the American Heart Association suggests limiting your consumption to no more than 11 to 13 grams per day on a 2000-calorie diet. One cup of whole milk contains 4.5 grams of saturated fat, while one cup of 2% milk contains 3 grams of saturated fat. This is one of the main reasons why most doctors suggest low-fat milk over whole milk.

A 2016 observational research published in “The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition” showed that milk lipid consumption, whether from whole milk, low-fat milk, or cheese, did not raise the chance of heart disease. It did not, however, reduce danger. However, the research discovered that substituting animal and dairy fat with veggie fat, as well as almonds instead of cheese, reduced the chance of heart disease by 10% or more.

Milk Fat and Diabetes

According to the American Diabetes Association, diabetes affects more than 30 million Americans and is the seventh top cause of mortality. According to a 2016 research released in “Circulation,” choosing whole milk over 2% milk may help prevent you from developing this persistent disease. Higher blood levels of dairy fatty acids were linked to a reduced chance of diabetes in this observational research. While the researchers aren’t sure why milk fat guards against diabetes, they suggested that it may help decrease hepatic fat synthesis and increase insulin sensitivity. While this appears to be encouraging for whole milk, clinical trials are required to prove the link and effect.

Contact Us

For more information or to make comments and suggestions, please contact:
Kurt Olsen
Dairy Development Coordinator, Missouri Department of Agriculture
Phone: (573) 291-5704
E-mail: [email protected]