Which Milk Is Best For You? – A Guide

India is the largest producer of buffalo milk and second largest of cow’s. While milk is home-delivered daily in the semi-urban area by local milkmen carrying metal containers on pickups, Metropolitan is a whole new story that mostly drinks packed milk.

Commercially a dozen type of milk is available in the market with much complex terminology that you are not familiar with. And most of the times, you pick a milk packet from the supermarket without even giving it a second look or a thought altogether.

Let’s talk about milk today, maybe it’ll make you read the labels next time when you’re off picking your daily goodness.

Pasteurised

Milk treated with pasteurisation is labelled as ‘pasteurised’. Pasteurised is the process of heating off milk and then quickly cooled down to eliminate certain bacteria. This process does not kill all microorganisms present in milk but is intended to inactivate certain enzymes and kill some bacteria.

Homogenised

Upon standing for 12 to 24 hours, fresh milk has a tendency to form a thick creamy layer on top of the milk. Homogenisation emulsifying the fat by mechanical methods for the purpose of physical stability. This process breaks the fat globules of milk into smaller droplets in order to make it suspended in the milk by preventing the cream from rising to the top. Homogenization adds to a longer shelf life of milk. that will be most attractive to consumers who favour milk without the cream layer. This is believed to have a better digestibility than untreated milk.

Before reaching your dining table, milk undergoes these two processes- Pasteurisation and homogenization. Don’t confuse homogenization with pasteurisation, as both have nothing to do with one another. Pasteurisation kills bacteria while homogenization emulsifies the fat content. Your milk can be pasteurised, homogenised or both like the picture is shown above. Organic certification doesn’t concern whether the milk is homogenised or pasteurised.

1. Full Cream Milk

Also known as whole milk due to its fat content without alteration. It is usually given to children, teenagers and body builders, given it provides 150 Kcal more than another type of milk. Whole milk has more flavour and creamier in consistency.  It comes in 2 variants:

  • Whole standardised/Pasteurised milk: Minimum fat content is 3.5%.
  • Whole homogenised milk: Fat globules are broken down to prevent the creamy layer at the top.
2. Toned Milk

It is added with skimmed milk powder and water toned. It minimises absorption of cholesterol because of its low-fat content of 3%. It contains less fat-soluble vitamins. It provides 60kcal energy, 125mg calcium and 3.1g protein per 100gms of milk.

3. Double Toned Milk

It contains 1.5% that is half the fat content of toned milk. Milk companies add skimmed milk powder and water to whole milk to make this consistency. Double toned milk is ideal for people on diet and trying to lose weight to keep calorie intake in check.

4. Skimmed Milk

Skimmed milk fat content is limited to 0.3% to 0.1%. Though skimmed milk contains almost all the nutrients found in whole milk, it has less fat soluble vitamins like Vitamin A, E, D and K because of the removal of fat content. It contains slightly more calcium but provides as much half energy of what a whole milk provides.

If we talk about real statistics, on an average, Cow’s milk contains, 3.4 g protein, 3.6 g fat, and 4.6 g lactose, 0.7 g minerals, Calcium 120 mg and supplies 66 kcal of energy per 100 grammes. Whereas Buffalo’s milk contains, 4.5 g protein,8.0 g fat, and 4.9 g lactose, minerals, calcium 198 mg and supplies 110 kcal of energy per 100 grammes.

Here’s the bottom line, if you want to stay close to nature and loved the idea of cream on your lips while getting the flavour of your milk then whole milk is for you. And if you can’t bear the cream nostalgia then go for a lesser fat solution. All in all, it all depends on how you want your milk.

Tips to remember: 
  1. Milk contains more than 16 vitamins and minerals – whole new reason to not skipping it.
  2. Drink milk before bedtime helps you sleep good, the presence of choline makes it possible.
  3. Maintain a good heart health by controlling cholesterol.
  4. Want healthy hair and skin? Try milk.
  5. Keeps anaemia at bay.
  6. Listening to antioxidants in every second commercial on TV? Milk helps in recycling body’s own antioxidants.
  7. Less the fat content in milk, lesser the fat soluble vitamins. More the water, lesser the water-soluble vitamins and minerals.

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