The Case Against Low-fat Milk

Lacey McConnell

Article Summary

The author of the article is Alice Park and was found on the TIME magazine website. The article was published on April 4, 2016.


In this article, the author compares the relationship between low-fat dairy milk (skim) and full-fat dairy milk (whole). She starts off by stating that dietary guidelines urge people to go for the low-fat diary milk choice and to steer clear of the full-fat diary choice, but there is some research that is calling this into question (TIME, The Case Against Low-fat Milk is Stronger Than Ever). There are two research studies that the author uses to support her statement. The first study was done on the analysis of blood over the span of 15 years. This study done by Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, found that individuals with higher levels of by-product found in full-fat dairy had a 46% lower risk of developing diabetes. Another study was done on the analysis of low-fat and full-fat dairy on obesity in women. The findings from this study show that women who consumed full-fat dairy in their diets had an 8% lower risk of becoming overweight or obese.


Although it is not known exactly why a full-fat dairy diet lowers the risk, the author gives a couple of potential reasons. One of those being that individuals who eat low-fat dairy might consume more sugars or carbohydrates, both of which have increasing effects on diabetes risk (TIME, The Case Against Low-fat Milk is Stronger Than Ever). The main point to take away from this article is that healthcare professionals should stop focusing on one nutrient recommendation and instead start looking at the whole diet and all the foods in it when giving out dietary guidelines.

Article Critique

The author of the article is Alice Park. She is a staff writer at TIME magazine and has been there since 1993. Her work mainly focuses on health and medical issues, which she has written thousands of articles on. She also has a book published on stem cell medicine. Alice Park has no advanced degree in nutrition. When an individual wants to know nutritional information, the best person to seek information from is a registered dieticain, or a nutrition professional with an advanced degree (DeBruyne, 2014, p.34).


The information that is in the article is based on scientific evidence. In the article, Alice discusses two research studies, one that was printed in the American Journal of Nutrition and the other in the journal Circulation. When examining both of these journals, the American Journal of Nutrition is a professional journal that has many nutritional studies published. The journal Circulation is located on a website with a .org. Information that is on a "government agency, volunteer association, consumer group, or professional organization provides the consumer with reliable health and nutrition information" (DeBruyne, 2014, p.335). Both of the studies that were presented in this article are from reliable sources, one being a professional journal and the other being a professional organization.


The article in question is well written. The author does not use big medical terms that confuse or trick the reader into thinking that she must know what she is talking about. Also in the article the author does not state any causal relationships. She simply states the evidence that is given from the studies that were done. Another thing that the author does not do is make recommendations to the reader about their diet. She makes a recommendation that health care professionals and nutritionists look more into research on nutritional claims, and to start looking at all claims and how they relate to each other. A point that she stresses is that individuals should not go out and consume vast amounts of full-fat dairy products in the hopes that they will lower their risk of diabetes and lower their risk of becoming overweight or obese. I think this is a very important piece of the article and attests to its validity. Even though Alice Park has no advanced nutrition degree, I think this article gives valid information. The article gives valid information in my opinion because she is not telling individuals to go out and eat this or don't eat this, and also it it only gives scientific evidence that comes from reliable sources.

References

DeBruyne, L.K., & Pinna, K. (2014). Nutrition for health and healthcare (5th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth


TIME. The case against low-fat milk is stronger than ever. Retrieved from http://time.com/4279538/the-case-against-low-fat-milk-is-stronger-than-ever/ on April 6,2016.