You may have heard that the ad campaigns suggesting milk can help you lose weight are ending. But did you hear about the spots?
Let’s talk about weight loss first.
A doctors’ group, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, complained to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) that the milk ads about weight loss were false and misleading.
The FTC didn’t stop the ads.
But the groups behind the “Milk Your Diet. Lose Weight!” and the “3-A-Day. Burn More Fat, Lose Weight” campaigns have agreed to end them anyway — at least until research provides more evidence to support the weight loss claims.
Now About Those Spots…
Data from a study of over 47,000 U.S. nurses by the Harvard School of Public Health showed that drinking milk was associated with a greater risk of acne. Skim milk was even worse than whole milk.
For women with the highest total milk intake — over 3 glasses a day — the increase in severe acne was 22%. This is when compared to women who drank the least milk.
For women who drank the most skim milk, the increase in severe acne was a whopping 44%!
Why Would This Happen?
No one knows for sure.
But milk comes from pregnant cows. So it’s possible that when you’re exposed to the hormones produced by the cows’ pregnancy, it may overload the hormone levels in your system.
And acne erupts.
Hormonal activity, such as menstrual cycles and puberty, is already linked to acne. So this may be true for some acne sufferers.
Yet there’s clearly a genetic link as well. I know I always drank a lot of milk. But I never had acne, even as a teenager.
A Potential Problem With The Study
The nurses were asked to “remember” what they had consumed during their high school years. So if their memories are faulty, the conclusions from the study will be wrong, too.
To confirm their findings, the researchers are analyzing information from the sons and daughters of the nurses in the original study.
But as of now, the link between acne and milk is technically unproven.
So if you or your child has acne, you may want to talk to your doctor about reducing or eliminating dairy products in your diet. Just to see if it helps.
But don’t do it without professional medical advice. You’ll need guidance on how to get enough calcium and vitamin D from other sources.
You don’t want to risk your bone or nutritional health just to get rid of some spots.