Livestock News

New USDA data deepen milk’s role in healthy nutrition

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For years milk has been a staple for many families when they are looking something delicious and nutritious. But now there’s even more good news to share about real dairy milk.

New information based on updated U.S. Department of Agriculture databases shows milk packs 13 essential nutrients in every serving, including zinc, selenium, iodine and potassium, plus nine more vitamins and minerals contributing to health, immune function, and strong bones and muscles.

“Milk has always played a critical role in health and wellness as a powerhouse beverage, but new information shows milk provides more benefits than we ever knew,” says Karen Doster, Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin director of youth and school programs.

This is great information for consumers looking to eat a healthy diet and is an added bonus for everyone who enjoys milk. It’s also important for dairy farmers to share with consumers while discussing the many benefits of milk and dairy products as part of a healthy, balanced diet.

Dairy farmers continue to produce the same wholesome product they always have, this new information simply means there’s even more wellness in every serving of milk than previously understood. Milk is still milk and provides the balanced nutrition a body needs. Compared to the alternatives on the market, real dairy is also more nutrient dense. 

Dairy wellness

The new data offers additional proof dairy milk has a natural nutrient content level few other single foods or beverages can compete with.

“Milk delivers multiple benefits through a mighty combination of natural nutrients aiding in muscle repair, rehydration and replenishment, while also helping to build strong bones and support immune health,” says Doster. “And it does so without the added sugars, colors and flavors which may be found in other beverages.”

Better than the rest

Milk packs a powerful punch in every serving. Milk’s unique, natural nutrient package includes:

  • A natural source of high-quality protein to build, repair and maintain lean muscle
  • Vitamin A, zinc and selenium to support a healthy immune system
  • Four B vitamins — riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), pantothenic acid (B5), and vitamin B12 to help convert food into energy
  • Calcium, vitamin D, phosphorus and protein to build and maintain strong bones and reduce the risk for stress fractures.
  • Iodine to help regulate metabolism and is linked to cognitive function.
  • Potassium to help maintain normal muscle function and regulate the balance of fluids in the body

Thanks to its healthy goodness and the dedication of dairy farm families, milk is an accessible, affordable way to include essential nutrients in human diets, including many which are critically needed and often under-consumed.

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