As people have increasingly become more conscious of healthy eating over the years, milk has been literally touted as the all-in-one near perfect food laden with so much nutritional goodness. In fact, even though milk does not belong to the 6 classes of food (Carbohydrates, Fats, Proteins, Vitamins, Minerals & Water), general food guides have somehow carved out a dietary group for milk/milk products.
Over time though, more knowledge has brought the conclusion that as far as healthy eating on milk goes, the rule of thumb is: less fat, less cholesterol, less calories!.
There is the good and bad of Cholesterol (especially bad when in excess as in Hypercholesterolemia/Hyperlipidemia ). The concern over cholesterols has soared because of its central role played by abnormal cholesterol levels in the formation of atheroma/plaques (Atherosclerosis) causing cardiovascular diseases. These ultimately result is coronary heart diseases, strokes, and even peripheral vascular diseases. The key dietary sources of cholesterol are animal fats from meat, poultry and dairy products like milk and Yogurt.
Understandably then, this is official basis for the divide in the different types of dairy (cow) milk which was has practically been synonymous with milk until the advent of other non-dairy milk alternatives like Soya Milk, Coconut Milk, etc.
Now getting down to practical everyday living means that it has got to be absolutely clear, what types of milk alternatives are healthier in different health scenarios or health needs. Check out this nicely summarized slideshow on milk choices that would help to make a quick decision for cholesterol.
For instance if you:
- Are on a cholesterol diet watch: Use Soya milk, Skimmed/Less-fat dairy milk or Hemp milk
- Are on a weight loss diet: Soya milk, Skimmed/Less-fat dairy milk ,Oat milk or Hemp milk
- Want to gain some nice flesh: Whole dairy or Coconut milk (in moderation though)
- Are Allergic to lactose/Galactose: Use Rice milk and try out all others but Dairy milk.