Milk is much more than a way to compliment a families'
cookie recipe. Milk is one of the most nutritious beverages to drink at any
age since it offers around 300 milligrams of the essential nutrient,
calcium. As the body's most abundant nutrient, calcium is stored in the
bones and teeth with smaller amounts in the blood and muscles. Calcium is used
in the human body to help develop strong bones and aids in muscle functioning.
The consumption of calcium is also necessary for growing baby and adult teeth.
This calcium also helps to prevent tooth decay once teeth are fully formed.
It is extremely important to consume enough
calcium during adolescence since this is the time when most bone mass
develops. A lack of a calcium rich diet as a teenager can lead to
osteoporosis--a disease where the bones become fragile and easier to break.
Released by the USDA,
shows that children aged 2 to 9 years old should consume two servings of low-fat
milk and dairy products. The benefits of milk do not decrease with age. It is
recommended those 9 years of age and up get 3 servings of dairy a day. As proper
bone development at puberty is vital, many experts often recommend teenagers
consume an extra glass each day
include calcium, but milk also provides protein, a source of energy for the
cells in the body. The addition of Vitamin D in milk helps the body to absorb
calcium and is necessary in maintaining bone health. As a
potassium source, regular milk consumption aids in maintaining blood vessels
and other functions of the nervous system. Riboflavin and Phosphorus in milk
help in releasing energy from fat and protein.
As we age, milk can help
to prevent colon caner, hypertension and other serious conditions. Milk can also
help in maintaining a balanced diet. Women have used milk as a beauty aid to
increase skin's softness for centuries. A warm glass of milk even works as a
gentle sleep aid.
A common complaint among children is disliking the
taste of milk. To make the drink more kid friendly, chocolate or strawberry
syrup can be added to the beverage. Moms can also turn to banana or
strawberry smoothies and other blended drinks to help their children get the
recommended serving. Kids are also more likely to drink milk with a sweet treat
on the side. After baking up their favorite
cookie recipe, offer a glass
of milk on the side for dunking.
For those who are concerned about the
fat and calorie content, low fat or fat-free milk offers a lighter alternative
but the same necessary nutrients.
Lactose intolerant individuals can indulge by choosing lactose free milk.
Though soy milk is becoming increasingly popular among health conscious
consumers unfortified versions do not have as much calcium as milk. So next time
you prepare those sugar cookies, fix a tall glass of creamy cold milk on the