Did you know?
Calcium, one of milk’s most important nutrients, is essential
to good health. Even though it is the most abundant mineral in your
body, calcium is one of the most frequently lacking nutrients in
the American diet. Did you know that if you don’t get enough
calcium, your body begins to take it from your bones? If your body
continually calls upon the bones for calcium, they become brittle
and weak. This is what leads to the crippling disease called osteoporosis.
That’s why calcium plays such an important role in building
and maintaining strong bones. But that’s not all – it
helps your heart beat, helps muscles relax, helps blood clot and
helps your nerves send messages throughout your body.
Suggested daily calcium intake is:
Calcium intake by most Americans today is far below recommended
levels. U.S. Dietary Guidelines suggest 2-3 servings of milk and
other dairy products each day, and even more for teenagers and adults
over age 51. Calcium is important in building strong bones early
in life, then keeping bones dense throughout the adult years. Children
build at least half their lifetime bone mass during their teenage
years, so intake of milk and dairy products is crucial for adolescents.
The percentage of overweight Americans, especially kids and teenagers,
has increased greatly in the last 30 years. This is due largely
to a lack of exercise, but also is caused by poor diet, including
a lack of milk and dairy products. Drinking milk instead of soft
drinks and sport drinks – which provide more than 30% of the
refined sugar in an average American diet – is an important
first step in creating a healthy lifestyle.
Milk and dairy foods long have been considered the best source of
calcium in the diet. In fact, about 73% of the calcium available
in the food supply is provided by milk and dairy products. Without
dairy foods, it is nearly impossible to meet calcium requirements
from other non-dairy food sources. Other high-calcium foods provide
less calcium, and the calcium is not as well-absorbed in the body.
|• 1,000 mg for adults
• 1,300 mg for adolescents
• 500 – 800 mg for young children
• 1,200 mg for adults over age 51
(Fat-free or reduced-fat products are recommended)
One cup of delicious milk provides:
|30% Calcium for strong bones and teeth
24% Riboflavin for healthy skin
16% Protein to build strong muscles
10% Vitamin A for night vision
A cow’s diet consists of 80 pounds of hay, corn barley, and
grass. A cow eats up to eight times per day and drinks 30-40 pounds
of water per day. A cow produces an average of eight gallons of milk
per day or around 17,200 pounds per year. After the cows are milked,
the milk is cooled to 38 degrees and stored in refrigerated tanks.