A recent study shows high consumption of milk is associated with higher mortality in men and women and higher fracture in women.

A diet rich in milk products has been promoted over the years to reduce the likelihood of osteoporotic fractures.’Milk contains some major nutrients and is rich in 18 of 22 essential nutrients, including calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D; specially important for the skeleton. Intestinal uptake of these nutrients is enhanced by the enzymatic capacity to digest lactose into D-glucose and D-galactose by mutation in the lactase gene, a variant common in those with northern European ancestry.’An intake of dairy foods corresponding to three or four glasses of milk a day has been suggested to save at least 20% of health care costs related to osteoporosis’ said the researchers.

They are however of the opinion that a high intake of milk might have undesirable effects, because milk is the main dietary source of D-galactose. ‘Experimental evidence in several animal species indicates that chronic exposure to D-galactose is deleterious to health and the addition of D-galactose by injections or in the diet is an established animal model of aging ‘said the researchers .

They were able to come to this conclusion by compiling various data from three counties of central Sweden using a cohort design. Two large Sweden cohorts; one with 61,433 women of age 37-74 years and one with 45,339 men of age 45-79. They were administered food frequency questionnaire in 1997. The researchers used multivariable survival models to determine the association between milk consumption and the time of mortality or fracture.

After 20 years,15,541 women died and 17,252 had a fracture of whom 4,252 had a hip fracture. The male cohort was observed after 11 years and 10,112 men died and 5066 had a fracture with 1166 hip fracture cases.

The researchers results show that high milk intake was associated with higher mortality in one cohort of women and in another cohort of men, and with higher fracture incidence in women.’ Given the observational study designs with the inherent possibility of residual confounding and reverse causation phenomena, a cautious interpretation of the results is recommended’ said Karl Michaelsson ;the lead researcher.

More Information

British Medical Journal

A work of Professor Karl. Etal ,Dept of Surgical Sciences ,University of Sweden,

See also  Obesity and The Risk

Leave a Reply