Massachusetts Dairy Promotion Board

Brought to you by Massachusetts Dairy Farmers!

Myths vs. Facts

You deserve to hear the real story about dairy products and dairy farming practices from those who know it best…Massachusetts dairy farmers! With less than 2 percent of the U.S. population involved in farming today, many people don’t have the opportunity to visit a dairy farm. This information is from hard-working Massachusetts dairy men and women who 7 days a week, 365 days a year bring dairy farm practices to life!

Myth:

Drinking milk will cause weight gain.


Fact:

Research shows that consuming 3 or more servings of dairy per day resulted in significantly lower weight, reduced body fat mass, and a decreased waist circumference.

Myth:

It is just as easy to get calcium from other foods besides dairy.


Fact:

Some fruits, vegetables and legumes do contain naturally occurring calcium. The amount of calcium in an 8oz glass of milk is 300mg or 1/3 of the daily recommended amount. To obtain that same amount of calcium, you would need to eat 18 oranges per day, or 9 cups of cooked leafy greens per day, or 8 cups of cooked pinto beans daily. Not only does dairy contain the most calcium out of any food, but it also has Vitamin D to help the body absorb calcium.

Myth:

People who take calcium supplements do not need to drink milk.


Fact:

Milk and other dairy products do not just contain calcium. Dairy is also many Americans’ primary source of both magnesium and potassium, nutrients that promote heart and cardiovascular health. Other nutrients found in dairy products include Vitamin B12, needed for making healthy blood cells, Vitamins A and D which support a healthy immune system, and riboflavin, needed for the body to produce energy. Finally, dairy contains high quality protein that is easily absorbed by the body.

Myth:

People with lactose intolerance should not consume dairy products.


Fact:

Lactose intolerance is a diagnosis that indicates the body’s inability to digest the carbohydrate, or lactose, in milk. The amount of lactose differs throughout dairy products with the most lactose in fluid milk and the least in aged cheeses. People with lactose intolerance can still consume small amounts of regular dairy products, especially aged cheeses, like Cheddar and can choose lactose-free versions of milk and yogurt to get the nutritional and taste benefits of dairy in their diet.

Myth:

Humans are not designed to drink cow’s milk.


Fact:

Domestication of cattle dates back to 6000 BC when humans first began consuming animal milk. Over time, humans developed a tolerance of lactose throughout the lifespan rather than just in childhood. The continuation of this trait indicates that consuming milk, with its unique and bountiful nutrient profile, led to an evolutionary advantage.

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Stewards of the Land

Most dairy farmers live and work on their farms, so it's important to them to protect the land, water and air for their families, surrounding communities and future generations.