Full cream versus low fat: the winner is...

19 April 2022
David Beckham Got Milk ad

David Beckham in the famous "Got Milk?" advertising campaign / Fair Use

Is low fat milk is healthier than full cream milk? If you’re fanatical about this because you think one is healthier than the other, let me set you straight:

1. Whole-fat dairy food intake is inversely associated with obesity prevalence. "Odds for global obesity (body mass index ≥30 kg/m(2)) and abdominal obesity (waist circumference >102 cm for men and >88cm for women) were determined based on total dairy food intake as well as intakes of individual low- and whole-fat dairy products (milk, yogurt, and cheese). Total dairy food intake was inversely associated with the likelihood of global obesity and abdominal obesity. Participants in the highest tertile of whole-fat dairy intakes (milk, cheese, yogurt) had significantly lower odds for being obese compared with those in the lowest intake tertile, after full adjustment for demographic, lifestyle, dietary, and cardiovascular risk factor variables."

Translation: if you consume full cream milk, you are less likely to be fat.

2. Because eating fat is satiating (that feeling of being satisfied or “full” after eating), eating foods with a high fat content encourages you to eat less. This is kind of like people who smoke cigarettes with lower nicotine content end up smoking more than those who smoke cigarettes with a high nicotine content.

3. There is no difference in blood pressure between those who have full fat dairy versus low fat dairy or limited dairy intake. "In men and women with metabolic syndrome, a diet rich in full-fat dairy had no effects on fasting lipid profile or blood pressure compared with diets limited in dairy or rich in low-fat dairy. Therefore, dairy fat, when consumed as part of complex whole foods, does not adversely impact these classic CVD risk factors."

4. Because fat is removed to make low fat milk, the protein content of the milk increases slightly, but so does the sugar. Low fat milk has 47g sugar per litre versus 45g per litre for full cream milk. Don’t believe me? Read the product labels.

Frankly, I don’t care who’s correct. I prefer the taste of full cream milk; and even better if it comes straight from the cow.

low fat versus full cream product labels

Low fat versus full cream product labels

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