Milk has long been linked to maintaining good health. Unilke popular belief, milk may be doing more harm to your body than good. Researchers have studied the benefits of milk and found that too much milk can have negative health effects for women.
The British Medical Journal published an article in their 28th October 2014 edition which suggests that women who drink three glasses of whole milk per day increase the chance they will die within twenty years as compared to women who only drink one glass or less.
Studies undertaken in Sweden found that lactose is half comprised of a sugar called D-galactose which works to increase oxidative stress and body inflammation. Studies in animals have found that D-galactose can quicken the aging process, which lowers life span. These studies would seem to clarify and perhaps contradict information issued by the U.S Department of Agriculture (USDA) who has recommended three cups of milk per day in order to maintain a regular blood pressure, boost protein and muscle mass, protect from any cardiovascular diseases and colorectal cancer. One point of clarification could be the difference of measure between a cup and a glass, but researchers in the latter studies remarked that their results potentially bring into question the validity of the USDA’s findings relating to recommending drinking a lot of milk to supplement and maintain bones.
Research on the validity of a link between fracturing bones and mortality rate linked with consuming milk found that one could not definitively state that milk is either good or bad. A study undertaken in 2005 and published in the Lancet linked milk consumption to decreasing the risk of stroke or heart attack. The study did not consider links to cardiovascular disease and milk consumption.
The US Center for Disease Control (CDC) has weighed in with an opinion on the link between osteoporosis and gaining calcium through milk, which is calcium rich and low in fat. The CDC found that consuming the recommended amount of milk daily could decrease a woman’s chances of getting osteoporosis in later life.
A study that ran for a three year period (1987-1990) used two base groups, comprised of 45,000 men in one group ranging in age between 45 and 79 and 61,000 women in the other group ranging in age from 39-74. The aim of the study was to identify whether or not their past studies on animals in this area would hold true in a human study and was aimed at determining whether milk consumption had any link, either positive or negative, to fracture rates or mortality rates. Participants in the study completed a questionnaire which gauged their eating habits relating to many different common food and drink, including milk. A cross reference based on demographic and social context including weight, height and general lifestyle was compiled within the study. The participants were monitored for several years, 20 for women and 11 for men, gauging mortality and any fracture incidence.
The results found that there was a 50% increase in hip fractures and a higher mortality rate in women who reported drinking three glasses of milk with a similar trend occurring in the male group although the results were more significant in the female population. Researchers noted that this was not a cause and effect study and as such should be interpreted cautiously and recommended waiting until further studies into the issue have been completed before changing any dietary habits. It was pointed out that based on the age groups there would be a higher rate of certain types of fractures anyway, such as hip fractures which are not uncommon in old age.