June is National Dairy Month!
Today's blog post is written by Immaculata University's Dietetic Intern, Amanda Lentz.
Consuming dairy products provides a variety of health benefits – especially improved bone health. Foods in the Dairy Group provide nutrients that are vital for health and maintenance of your body. These nutrients include calcium, potassium, and vitamin D.
Calcium is used for building bones and teeth and in maintaining bone mass. Dairy products are the primary source of calcium in American diets.
- Diets rich in potassium may help to maintain healthy blood pressure. Dairy products, especially yogurt, milk, and soy milk, provide potassium.
Vitamin D functions in the body to maintain proper levels of calcium and phosphorous, thereby helping to build and maintain bones. Milk and soy milk that are fortified with vitamin D are good sources of this nutrient.
Dairy Health Benefits
- Intake of dairy products is linked to improved bone health, and may reduce the risk of osteoporosis.
- The intake of dairy products is especially important to bone health during childhood and adolescence, when bone mass is being built.
- Intake of dairy products is also associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes, and with lower blood pressure in adults.
If you are looking for ways to incorporate dairy into your meals, Cuisine365 offers many options like: deconstructed fruit parfait, varieties of delicious smoothies, Mediterranean Salad, & Grilled Chicken Caprese…just to name a few!
- Add fat-free or low-fat milk instead of water to oatmeal and hot cereals.
- Have fat-free or low-fat yogurt as a snack.
- Make a dip for fruits or vegetables from yogurt.
- Make fruit-yogurt smoothies in the blender.
- Top cut-up fruit with flavored yogurt for a quick dessert.
- Top casseroles, soups, stews, or vegetables with shredded reduced-fat or low-fat cheese.
- Top a baked potato with fat-free or low-fat yogurt.