Whole Milk Linked to Slimmer Kids

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children switch from whole milk to a lower fat milk at age two. The conventional wisdom is that getting children used to reduced fat milk will help keep them at a healthy weight. Skim, 1%, or 2% milk has fewer calories per cup. It just makes sense, doesn't it?

So here's where things gets confusing. A new study of preschool-aged children published in the Archives of Disease in Childhood, a sister publication of the British Medical Journal, finds that low-fat milk was associated with higher weight.

That's right, kids drinking low-fat milk tended to be heavier.

"We were quite surprised" by the findings, Dr. Mark DeBoer told me in an email. He and his co-author, Dr. Rebecca Scharf, both of the University of Virginia, had hypothesized just the opposite.

But they found the relationship between skim-milk drinkers and higher body weights held up across all racial/ethnic and socioeconomic groups. DeBoer says their data also show that low-fat milk did not restrain weight gain in preschoolers over time.

This is not the first study to show such results, but the authors call for further research, as this study did not take into account what types of food the children were consuming or their total caloric intake. And scientists say sugary drinks make a bigger difference in overall child obesity. Link

(Image credit: Flickr user David Goehring)


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Fat is not the devil as we've all been told.
Just read up on Primal or Paleo eating. Most of the people that have success with it eat loads of yummy healthy fats and are nice and fit.
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Or, consumption of whole milk, which has more fat, leads to early satiety, which would curb further eating/drinking. Or, skim milk, lacking fat, has a higher % of calories from milk sugars; together with the missing effect of fat on satiety, kids drinking skim would be taking in more sugar right then.

Why would it be considered paranoid to give your kid skim milk instead of whole? Why would it not simply be reasonable, given that parents who aren't in the relevant research fields wouldn't know that the data would be surprisingly contradictory to the common notion that fat is "bad"?
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I can tell you the reason for this. Whole milk tastes good and kids like to drink it. Skim milk tastes like crap and kids don't want it, they want soda and kool-aid instead. So they gain more weight than the kids drinking whole milk. Parents stop being paranoid and give your kids whole milk. It's nutritious, delicious and healthy. And keep them away from soda for as long as possible.
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