Dairy products, especially milk, provide a significant amount of protein and calcium needed by the body. We have heard many times about the importance of dairy consumption, and nutritionists believe that everyone should include a glass of milk and 200 grams of yogurt in their daily diet. Milk consumption is far more critical in seniors. Various questions such as whether to drink low-fat or high-fat milk, drinking milk before going to bed or after waking up, or drinking milk cold or seniors pose hot. In today’s article on Living Maples Mag, we will answer all questions regarding the benefits of drinking milk for seniors.
Consumption of dairy products, especially milk, is crucial that nutritionists recommend to people who are allergic to milk to consume yogurt, cheese and curd to provide their body nutrients. But we must never forget that other dairy products can never replace milk, and milk is the best option for the calcium supply of seniors.
Benefits of Drinking Milk for Seniors
Milk and other dairy products are rich in nutrients, including proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium and zinc. For this reason, eliminating dairy is equivalent to eliminating a large group of vitamins and minerals needed by the body. Doctors even suggest seniors who take calcium and vitamin pills not neglect milk because medications cannot provide them under the pretext of taking vitamins.
Seniors on a diet should also include milk and yogurt in their diet. Seniors who do not drink milk and dairy products might face severe hair loss, nail vulnerabilities, muscle aches and osteoporosis.
Types of Milk
Suppose you are one of those who take the most available and the coolest milk from the store refrigerator when buying milk. Knowing the various components, fat content, and milk processing methods is useful. You should choose milk according to your physical condition and body needs.
Some seniors are allergic to lactose due to the lactase enzyme’s lack of secretion in the large intestine. If they drink regular milk, people with lactose intolerance experience a burning sensation in their stomach and produce gas in their gut, which is annoying. There is lactose-free milk available to these people not to be deficient in calcium.
Some seniors do not like the smell and taste of natural milk. For this reason, they refuse to drink milk. Flavoured milk with fruit compounds such as strawberry milk, cantaloupe milk, banana milk, etc., is produced for these seniors. At home, you can mix regular milk with carrots or fruits to enjoy the taste and smell of milk in addition to the vitamins in milk.
Note that it is better not to mix milk with tea or coffee! Tea and coffee alone indeed benefit the body, but their combination with milk prevents the effective absorption of calcium in milk.
- Read More: Pros and Cons of Drinking Coffee for Seniors
Pasteurized, Sterilized and Homogenized Milk
The difference between pasteurized and sterilized milk is in its shelf life. You cannot store pasteurized milk for more than 2 or 3 days because pasteurization has killed pathogenic microbes, but it did not destroy the spoilage microbes.
Due to the higher temperature of sterilization, sterilized milk’s shelf life is longer. You can keep it out of the refrigerator. Still, the critical point is that some of the beneficial substances and vitamins disappear during sterilization.
Homogenized milk is whiter and tastes better. It is also easier to digest. That is why it is a good option for seniors with digestive issues. The only drawback of homogenized milk is that they have a high price due to the process and sensitivity of the production process, and of course, they are susceptible to sunlight.
High-Fat and Low-Fat Milk
It is a misconception that some people think that low-fat milk has less calcium. It is interesting to know that low-fat milk has more calcium. However, it lacks some of the nutrients in the high-fat type. The lower the fat content of milk, the more calcium it contains. Seniors who need more calcium should drink low-fat milk. Low-fat milk also reduces the possibility of osteoporosis in seniors.
The supply of calcium needed by the body through milk leads to control and weight loss, achieving fitness, preventing colon cancer, blood pressure regulation, preventing heart disease, and reducing menopause symptoms. Calcium contributes to the rapid and proper growth of bones, teeth, and the growth of hair and nails.
It is essential to know that milk’s fat significantly provides energy and absorbs other vitamins for the elderly. High-fat milk is suitable for children and adults, but seniors should avoid drinking high-fat milk.
Women are more prone to osteoporosis than men in old age. Therefore, the need to absorb calcium is more important for women. Low-fat milk with more calcium is a better option for women.
The Best Time to Drink Milk for Seniors
It is best to drink milk an hour and a half after a meal or lunch. In this case, there is no interference in the absorption of iron and zinc and vitamins in food with calcium in milk.
Also, if you are in the habit of drinking milk before going to bed, it is better to drink a glass of milk half an hour before bed. In this case, calcium has enough time to be absorbed and does not interfere with your sleep process. It is important to point out that milk is among the best foods to help seniors sleep.
In mind milk calcium absorption, it does not matter if you drink milk cold, hot, or lukewarm. The milk temperature does not interfere with the amount and duration of calcium absorption. The choice of milk temperature depends on the taste and desire of the person. Some seniors experience nausea by drinking warm milk and suffer from the mucus in their gastrointestinal tract. Others experience bloating after drinking cold milk. In all these cases, the calcium in the milk returns to normal. Hence, it would be best to determine whether your digestive system is compatible with hot or cold milk.
Knowing the necessity of drinking milk and the importance of choosing suitable milk, include drinking milk seriously in your diet. Do not forget that none of the dairy products can replace milk. Hence, enhance your health and life quality by drinking milk.