‘Real’ milk improves health

Published 12:00 am Sunday, May 11, 2003

Suffolk News-Herald

Heritage Point Holsteins is a dairy farm milking an average of 140 head of registered Holstein cows.

Registration with the Holstein Association, headquartered in Brattleboro, Vt., is a mark of honor for the farm owner, meaning that he has a pure-bred herd of the best in the Holstein breed.

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Williams follows in the footsteps of his retired father, Richard Williams, a dairyman who worked the family farm for most of his 84 years. He and his wife, Margaret, are now enjoying retirement, but visit Heritage Point often. The land has been family-held for more than 100 years, and Roger and Candi Williams’ two sons, Michael and Clayton stand as the future.

Roger Williams is proud of his heritage and of being affiliated with the &uot;check-off&uot; program for American Dairy Farmers. For every 100-pounds of milk produced on his farm, he contributes 15 cents toward research and development for dairymen across the nation.

Williams is also pleased with the product he’s producing, in spite of the bad press milk has previously suffered.

&uot;The latest research shows that all previous findings were full of error,&uot; said Williams. &uot;What they are now finding is that milk and dairy products are one of the best deals when it comes to health and protecting yourself from cancer as well as bone density loss. It also shows one other amazing fact.

&uot;Research shows that women who consumed at least three servings of low-fat dairy foods per day were at the lowest risk of becoming obese, according to a study in the Journal of Nutrition. In fact, there was an 80 percent reduction in risk for any given level of calorie intake.

&uot;It’s tempting to cut out the dairy foods when you want to lose weight, but when you do this, the Journal says it sends a signal to your body to conserve calcium, which in turn creates higher levels of the hormone calcitriol. It’s calcitriol that triggers the production of fat cells. When the calcitriol levels are boosted, fat cells expand and store themselves in the body. Translation: You get fat. But when you eat dairy foods, you get more calcium. And calcium suppresses the calcitriol. That in turn breaks down more fat.

&uot;The best foods to eat are &uot;Real&uot; dairy products-milk, cheese, and yogurt-rather than calcium-fortified foods because the real deal contains more vitamins and minerals. Previous research has shown that dairy products also reduce the risk of osteoporosis, high blood pressure, and possibly colon cancer. Now they’ll help you lose weight.&uot;