Milk and Mood
In response to low-carb and low-fat diet fads, many people have sworn off milk products. Others may be sensitive to the effects of milk on their digestive or respiratory systems.
There is a benefit to drinking milk, that those who have given it up are missing. Milk can positively affect your mood. It is high in whey protein, which is a rich source of the amino acid tryptophan. Whey decreases physiological responses to stress, can enhance your mood, and boost memory performance.
A study conducted by Dutch and Yale University researchers found that whey increases tryptophan in the brain, which in turn leads to a higher production of the chemical serotonin. This body chemical boosts your mood and has the potential to enhance your brain’s performance during stressful times.
Whey has also been found to aid in weight loss, as it plays an important role in limiting hepatic fatty acid synthesis. This means that muscle tissue burns more fat when exercising. Whey also can help with mild depression.
So, what is the best way to get milk in your diet without any negative side effects? Try adding low-fat or fat-free milk sources such as yogurt, cottage cheese, and cultured dairy beverages like kefir. You can also add whey powder to a daily smoothie. Or simply drink some milk.
Most negative effects come from drinking too much milk. An 8-ounce glass, one cup, of fat-free organic milk every few hours will boost your mood and give you a steady stream of energy for the entire day.