Benefits of Dairy
A Unique Package of Nutrients You Can Trust
Milk is a good or excellent source of protein, calcium, vitamins A and D, vitamin B12, riboflavin (B2), niacin, phosphorus, and pantothenic acid. Whether it’s fat-free, low-fat, lactose-free or flavored, the Food and Drug Administration standards mandate that cow’s milk is not only safe to drink, but that it contains all of these nutrients in every glass, every time, in every brand, from every store – you can count on that. No such standards exist for non-dairy milk alternatives.
Maximum Calcium Absorption
In addition to milk’s unique package of essential nutrients, its naturally occurring form of calcium is readily absorbed by our bodies. This is not always true of the various forms of calcium that may be used to fortify non-dairy milk alternatives.
So, when comparing non-dairy milk alternatives to real milk, it is important to consider both the quantity and the quality of the essential nutrients contained in each.
A High Quality Protein
Milk is a great high quality protein, with an average of 8 grams per cup. The protein in milk is complete, meaning it provides all of the essential building blocks for muscle development and repair, proper immune function, and many other important processes essential for good health. Plant-based proteins are not complete proteins and many non-dairy plant-based beverages have 1 gram of protein or less per serving.
Disease and Risk Reduction
Milk intake has been associated with:
- Improved bone health – especially in children and adolescents
- A reduced risk of cardiovascular disease
- A reduced risk of type 2 diabetes
- Controlled blood pressure
In fact, dairy is an important component of D.A.S.H. — Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension — a diet endorsed by the American Heart AssociationTM to lower blood pressure.
Milk is a natural product without added sugars, stabilizers or flavorings which are often found in the ingredient lists of many non-dairy milk alternatives.
Return on Investment, Guaranteed
At only $0.17* or less per cup, milk is a nutritious bargain and a great return on investment. Most non-dairy milk alternatives are twice the cost of milk, at an average price of $0.40** per cup.
* Nutritional information based on national brands of soy, almond, rice, coconut and hemp beverage available in traditional grocery stores.
**Average price per cup based on 2013 Colorado retail pricing.
Nature’s Recovery Drink
Milk serves as a great post-exercise recovery drink due its unique package of nutrients:
- Carbohydrate for replenishing lost energy
- High Quality Proteins for reducing muscle breakdown and stimulating muscle growth
- Electrolytes and Fluid for rehydration
Western Dairy Blog