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The Skinny on Full Fat Dairy

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The news has been full of stories touting the benefits of “healthy fats”. Health conscious consumers have switched to olive or coconut oils for cooking, started adding avocados to everything (avocado toast, anyone?) and began stocking their snack bins with almonds.

Those same consumers, however, will systematically choose low-fat milk, no-fat yogurt and avoid cheese at all costs. Why?

Over the last few decades, nutritionists have studied the effect of fats on the human body. They discovered a correlation between a fatty diet and heart disease, triggering an outcry against “fats” in food.

However, recent studies have revealed that not only is full fat-dairy not bad for you, it may ultimately be more beneficial than you realize. Click To Tweet

Dairy Fats Lower Your Risk of Diabetes

According to nutritionists, full-fat dairy delays the body’s absorption of the sugar in the milk. The result? Your blood sugar rises more slowly. Even more impressive? Lower blood sugar levels also mean lower insulin levels. In fact, people who consumed full fat dairy have a 46% lower chance of developing Type 2 diabetes than those who consumed low fat products.

Dairy Fats Help You Lose Weight

This seems counterintuitive, particularly if you were raised with the idea that drinking whole milk will make you gain weight. On the contrary, full fat dairy products actually help you increase your weight loss.

A 2013 study revealed that individuals who maintain a full fat dairy diet tend to be leaner than their low-fat counterparts. The fats in dairy products slow down the release of sugars into your bloodstream. This helps to prevent overeating. An additional benefit, the fats help you feel fuller. You may end up eating fewer calories with full fat dairy products than you would have on low-fat diets.

Dairy Fats Help You Reduce Your Sugar Intake

Typically, when an individual reduces the amount of dairy fats they consume, they inadvertently increase the amount of refined sugars and carbohydrates. After removing the fats from products, manufacturers replace them with extra sugars to aid in flavor. The result? You can consume less fats and still gain weight.

Dairy Fats Improve Heart Health

After years of avoiding the cheese tray, consumers can return to their favorite fromage tray with confidence. A study released in 2012 suggests that a diet of full fat dairy within the typical patterns of a healthy lifestyle can raise healthy HDL cholesterol levels.

Dairy products contain more than 400 types of fatty acids. These acids have been shown to have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body. What does that mean? It means that full fat dairy (including cheese!) can decrease the risk of heart disease.

How to Add Full Fat Dairy to Your Diet

Replacing your low fat dairy products with full fat ones is simple. To achieve maximum health benefits from full fat dairy, however, use moderation. Look for ways to include full dairy fats in your diet.

Experiment with ghee (clarified butter) for cooking. Check out the full fat yogurts that are hitting supermarkets. Switch back to whole milk for your morning cereal. Finally, an eating trend that we can fully support!

Dairy lovers, the future is bright!

Mandeep Hans is Director of Sales & Marketing for Hans Dairy


Founded in 1997, Hans Dairy is one of the largest Ontario businesses that specialize in South Asian dairy products.