Got Milk?

The calcium in milk is crucial for maintaining good health—are you getting enough?

By Camille Chatterjee, published on May 1, 1999 - last reviewed on January 14, 2007

Got milk? Most women don't get enough, though the calcium it
contains is crucial to preventing osteoporosis. So scientists are looking
at why people buy milk—in the hopes that they will buy more.

Alma Blake, assistant professor of nutrition at the
University of Maryland, surveyed 100 women to find out what kinds of milk
they drank and their attitudes about the different types. Almost one
in four drank no milk at all, and of the rest, most bought the healthiest

The breakdown: Forty-two percent claimed to buy skim, while 36 percent chose milk with 2 percent
fat and 27 percent chose 1 percent milk. And only 18 percent reported purchasing whole. Women
don't enjoy the light taste of skim; and most said their families favor the
flavor of fattier milks, with 41 percent of households preferring whole milk and 44 percent
choosing 2 percent milk. Still, the women deem skim "good for me" and "low calorie."

While the women met the 800 mg RDA for calcium, they fell short
of the daily recommended intake: 1000 to
1300 mg of calcium for adults age 25 to 50.