If your childhood was like a lot of others kids’ experiences here in the U.S., milk was probably a large part of your daily diet. You poured it over a bowl of cereal for breakfast in the mornings, drank it along with your lunch at school, and a big glass of it with dinner was not unusual. But despite its popularity and history, there are also some milk myths floating around out there that a lot of people believe. Have you heard any of these tall tales about milk?
Have You Heard These Milk Myths?
Milk is the best source for all of your body’s calcium needs. True, milk is a good source for calcium, part of your body’s foundation for strong bones and healthy teeth. But the high levels of vitamin A and saturated fat in milk can work against that calcium intake and end up actually weakening your bones. You’re fine to limit your dairy intake a bit and get your calcium from other, less processed sources such as leafy green vegetables and beans. Vitamin D also plays a huge role in building healthy bones, too!
Drinking milk causes excess mucus. You usually hear this one if you have a cold along a runny nose. While mucus, or more specifically phlegm, usually goes hand in hand with the common cold, drinking milk won’t spark the production of any more than you would have had in the first place. This myth is most likely based simply on how milk can make the mucus feel thicker than it would have, otherwise.
Milk is good for cats. After a kitten is weaned from its mother, milk is no longer necessary for a cat. This is probably one of the more popular milk myths due its portrayal in stories and Hollywood movies, and, unfortunately, is actually bad for cats. Expect a sick cat, including vomiting and possibly diarrhea, if he or she manages to ingest some milk.
Drinking milk causes acne. The fact versus myth viewpoint on this one depends more on how you interpret the data. What it basically boils down to is that its more the cow’s own hormones in milk that can trigger the overproduction of skin oil in humans – not the milk, itself. But the cow’s hormones are naturally in the milk, so … see what I mean?
Chocolate milk comes from brown cows. Ok, so this one goes way, way back and it’s one I’m sure nearly every kid heard at one point or another on the playground or in the lunchroom. As logical as it seems, brown cows do not, in fact, produce chocolate milk. Case closed!