Before milk is bottled, all the cream is removed by centrifugation, a spinning process that separates the denser fat from the milk.
There are more choices than ever in the dairy aisle. Besides the abundance of plant-based beverages disguised as milk, cow’s milk options are plentiful. Nutritionally, cow’s milk is hard to beat. One cup provides eight grams of high-quality protein and 30 percent of our daily calcium need. Milk also has potassium, B12, B6, magnesium and vitamin A and is fortified with vitamin D.
Before milk is bottled, all the cream is removed by centrifugation, a spinning process that separates the denser fat from the milk. Later, the cream is added back to the right concentration: 3.5 percent cream for whole milk; 2 percent cream for reduced-fat or 2% milk; 1 percent cream for low-fat or 1% milk; and less than .2 percent cream for fat-free or skim milk. None of the milks are “watered down” or diluted. Regardless of fat content, these types of cow’s milk all contain the same essential nutrients and vary only in fat content. Because cream floats to the top, commercial milks undergo homogenization to break the fat into smaller molecules so the cream stays suspended throughout the milk. Homogenization is not a chemical treatment and does not add anything to the milk.
All commercial milks are pasteurized to kill harmful bacteria that can be in raw milk. Pasteurization is a process in which the milk is heated to 161 degrees, held for 15 seconds and then quickly cooled. Pasteurization does not change the milk nutrient composition or add anything to the milk.
Here are some cow’s milks that you are likely to see in the dairy case, including a couple of newer products.
Lactose-free milk has been a staple in most stores for years. Lactose is a natural sugar found in milk. Our bodies make an enzyme called lactase to help digest lactose in our diet. If your body doesn’t make enough lactase, you may not be able to digest milk properly, causing gastrointestinal discomfort. It’s estimated that as many as 65 percent of adults are lactose intolerant. To make lactose-free milk, an enzyme is added to the milk that breaks down the lactose for you. Lactose-free milk has the same essential nutrients as regular milk but tends to taste a little sweeter.
Organic milk comes from cows that graze on pastures at least 120 days a year. If you buy organic milk, make sure it is marked USDA certified organic. Organic milk may have slightly more omega 3 fat content, depending on the cow’s diet, but it is not a significant source of this nutrient and otherwise the nutrition is the same as regular milk.
Ultra high temperature (UHT) milk undergoes a special pasteurization and packaging process that gives the milk a shelf life of several months. Once opened, the milk has the same shelf life as refrigerated milk, seven to 10 days. Nutritionally, it is the same as regular milk.
Fairlife milk is one of the newer milks on the market. This milk is ultra-filtered by a patented process that separates milk into its five parts: water, vitamins/minerals, lactose, protein and butterfat. The parts are then recombined in a way that makes the final product lactose-free with 50 percent more protein, 30 percent more calcium and half the natural sugar as regular milk. It also has a longer shelf life. This might be a good choice for someone wanting to increase the protein or calcium in their diet.
A2 milk is the newest addition to the dairy case. Milk has two main types of milk proteins. One protein, beta casein, comes in two forms: A1 and A2. The A1 or A2 content can vary with the breed of cow producing the milk, but most milk contains both A1 and A2 proteins in about the same proportions. New studies indicate that some milk intolerances may not be due to lactose intolerance but rather to an allergy or intolerance to the A1 beta casein protein. A2 milk comes from cows that produce only the A2 protein, making the milk easier to tolerate for some people. The nutrition of A2 milk is the same as regular milk. Although the studies are limited, A2 milk might be worth a try if you do not tolerate regular milk.
It is recommended that adults get three servings of dairy daily. A serving of dairy would be one cup of milk, one cup of yogurt, or one and a half ounces of cheese.
Source: Lake News Online