All Types of Milk and How to Select Milk for Everyone

Nowadays, with the development of the economy and the diversification of vegetables and fruits, a dramatically increasing number of people begin paying attention to having a much healthy and diversified diet, which is especially noticeable for parents picking milk for their children.

The discussion about milk types and their nutrients never ends.

It’s common to see questions on Reddit or Quora about how to pick suitable milk for children, which has become a hot topic among young parents recently. At the same time, their concern has changed from which brand of milk contains much rich nutrition to which kind of nutrition is beneficial for children’s health.

Up to now, there are three leading kinds of milk available on the milk market, that is, whole-fat milk, low-fat milk, and skim milk respectively. However, most people fail to figure the main differences between the three kinds of milk. If you are a member of this group, you cannot miss reading this article.

The Leading Differences between Different Types of Milk

Fat Content

The fat content of pure whole milk is about 3%-4%, while the common whole milk on the market is usually 3%. Low-fat milk, also known as semi-skimmed milk, is about 1%-1.5% fat; skim milk, which is centrifuged to remove most of the fat in the milk, has only 0.5% fat.

Nutrient Content

Whole milk, low-fat milk, and skim milk basically have the same amount of protein and carbohydrate content but behave differently in both fat content and vitamin content. Whole milk is rich in fat and without the process of fat removal. Meanwhile, so its fat-soluble nutrients, such as vitamin A, D, E, and K are relatively high. Since vitamin normally exists in fat, as the fat content of low-fat milk and skim milk usually goes down in the process of degreasing, the healthy fat-soluble vitamins will be dissolved. That won’t occur to whole-fat milk, however.


In fact, the reason why milk has a special fragrance all relies on the volatile components of fat. Without it, the fragrance of milk will be reduced or even become tasteless. That is the reason why whole milk is thick and flavorful, low-fat milk slightly less flavorful, and skim milk watery.

So, according to the above, you may learn that milk fat is an important component of milk. To be honest, besides the above functions, some components in milk fat have antibacterial, anticancer, and antioxidant properties.

Now that fat milk is so important, why are low-fat milk and skim milk produced? The fact is milk fat contains a lot of heat and sugar (generally lactose), and these components are bad for weight loss, so these two kinds of milk are usually a good choice for dieters.

Different Types of Milk Work for Different People

Whole Milk

Whole fat milk contains all the ingredients of milk, features the best taste, but also has the highest calorie content, so it is suitable for children, pregnant women, and the elderly.

Low Fat Milk

Low-fat milk is mass consumption milk and is more suitable for middle-aged people.

Skim Milk

It suits those who are asked to limit fat intake and want to maintain a body shape, or those suffering from hypertension, hyperlipidemia, thrombosis, or other cardiovascular diseases because most of the fat has been removed so that it retains milk protein, vitamins, minerals, and trace elements. In addition, skim milk is also a good option for diabetes and obesity.

How to Choose a Proper Milk for Different People

Choose Milk for Children

It is suggested parents pick up suitable milk for their children from the following aspects:

Whole milk is preferred.

Whole milk has much fat that is more important for kids than it is usually believed. It not only provides energy for a kid’s body to grow rapidly but also provides essential fatty acids for rapid brain development.

  • Healthy children over the age of 1 drink whole milk.
  • Children who are overweight, obese, or have a family history of obesity, hypertension or heart diseases should drink 2% reduced-fat milk when they are 1 to 2 years old, while over the age of 2, they should drink 1% low fat or skim milk.
  • If your 1-year-old kid does not like plain milk, it is okay to eat the same number of dairy products, like cheese and unsweetened yogurt to help your child get enough calcium.
Choose one with simple ingredients

Generally, milk with only “raw milk” in the ingredients list can be selected, but it can also be chosen with extra nutritional enhancers added, such as vitamin D or vitamin A in accordance with National Food Safety Regulations, or DHA in accordance with the new resource food list.

Choose a nearby milk source

From the perspective of transportation, it is recommended to choose the nearby milk source, because fresh milk has a very high requirement for the quality of milk source, production chain, and the whole process of cold chain transportation. If you are looking for fresh pasteurized milk, it is suggested to order milk from a local dairy source.

Choose Milk for the Old

It should be learned that for the old, drinking milk every day benefits them a lot, because milk can not only offer them protein, minerals, fat, carbohydrate, vitamin, and water but helps them prevent osteoporosis. In addition, milk can also strengthen their physique, and improve life quality. However, it does not mean that any kind of milk suits the elder, so choosing proper milk for the old is very important.

Choose a variety of milk and dairy products

It is advised that the old should drink different kinds of milk, especially whole milk, or take a diversifying combination of dairy products. For example, 150g-200g fresh milk with 150g yogurt, 25g-30gwhole milk powder with 150g yogurt, 150g-200g fresh milk with 20g cheese. By the way, the old with high blood sugar, the yogurt should be sugar-free.

Choose milk according to nutrition list

When choosing milk from the market, the old should see and buy milk with the following ingredients:

  • High-content Vitamin D and CPP.
  • Deep sea fish oil and phospholipid.
  • Inulin and other substances rich in cellulose.
Choose a good milk source

Milk source is the key to determining the quality of dairy products. The quality and safety of milk raw materials are directly determined by the level of systematic management of milk source pastures and dairy cattle breeds.

Choose Milk for the Pregnant

The pregnant is a special group because the foods they take every day can affect not only themselves but the baby in their belly. Pregnant are recommended to choose whole milk in general. Here are some useful tips for pregnant to choose milk.

Choose milk with a short shelf life

Longer shelf life means more additives, and these additives will be accumulated in the pregnant mothers’ bodies, thus harming maternal and child health for a long time.

See the content of protein

The reason why the pregnant should drink milk is to supple protein, so it is advised that the pregnant should choose milk with more than 3g protein.

Choose milk according to the component list

The pregnant should buy milk with only fresh milk on its component list because only the milk with only fresh milk has the real nutrition value. Some other milk, like this kind of milk with the milk powder, though has a good taste, can only be deemed as a milk beverage, which contains less nutrition value.

Which Type of Milk is Fit for Intermittent Fasting?

There is no doubt that milk is suitable for those who are fasting now.  Although milk is famous for its high content of heat and fat, skim fat milk is a good choice for fasters, which contains much less fat and heat, but can still meet their nutrition requirement. Skim milk is removed fat harmful to the human body, and maintain much beneficial nutrition, such as protein, mineral, vitamin, and trace elements.

In order to have a much better weight loss effect, fasters are advised to eat a lot of vegetables and foods and do some exercises when drinking skim milk.

For fasters, there are some principles when choosing skim milk

Identify fake milk via ingredient list

In most cases, the shorter the list, the safer the milk. In addition, if there is only milk in the list, it is pure milk or fresh milk, if milk is in the first position, but more additives, modified milk, and if the water is in the first position, milk beverage.

Choose milk according to the content of protein

It is usually better milk, which contains 3g protein every 100ml milk. Besides that, whether the content of protein is more than 2.9g/100ml is a good standard to judge the quality of milk.

Choose some famous brand of milk

It is usually believed that famous brands of milk have a much better milk source and technology of sterilization, in addition, the additives are relatively few and healthy for the human body.

Bottom Line

  • Different types of milk contain different content of nutrition, and milk fat, which makes them suit for different people.
  • For children, it is recommended to drink whole milk, for its high content of energy, fat, and healthy components.
  • For the elderly, it is recommended they should choose whole milk, for its high content of nutrition.
  • For the pregnant, it is recommended that they should take whole milk, which has only fresh milk on component list.
  • For intermittent fasters, it is recommended that they should drink skim milk, which has much less content of fat and heat.

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