1 . Why is milk called nature’s wonder drink?
Milk is one of the most important, complete foods available. It is recommended that everyone, regardless of age, gender or fitness level, include milk or milk products in their every day diet.
Milk and milk products are available in various forms, such as fresh milk (full cream and low fat), powdered milk (full cream, skim and filled), cheese, yoghurt and cream.
2 . What vitamins and minerals does milk contain and why are they important for our bodies?
Milk products not only provide energy, but are also a good source of protein and carbohydrates. The proteins in milk are high quality because they contain amino acids needed for normal growth and body maintenance. These amino acids also form antibodies which fight infections. Milk is also a great source of minerals, namely calcium and phosphorous, and a range of vitamins.
The calcium provided by milk is well absorbed by the body and is vital for strong bones and teeth. Calcium is also necessary for blood clotting, muscle contractions and relaxation for normal nerve transmissions inside the body. If one does not get enough calcium in the diet, it can cause weak and brittle bones later on in life.
Vitamins are essential for the normal functioning of our bodies. Vitamin A is an important nutrient as it helps to protect the body against infection, promotes a healthy skin and helps maintain vision in dim light. The vitamin D found in milk on the other hand, when combined with calcium and phosphorus, assures healthy teeth and bones. The B vitamins found in milk (B 1, B 2, B 1 2) help produce energy in the body, aid in growth and repair of body cells.
3. Why do we need powdered milk?
Fresh cows’ milk is made up of 10% solids and 90% water. Milk powder is produced by removing the water from the milk. Milk powder can be packed and stored between 12 to 24 months depending on the quality of the packaging methods, allowing for economical transport and distribution of the product. Milk powder is therefore the undisputed value for money dairy product widely available to consumers.
In many countries, it is difficult to store grocery items that require refrigeration. Dehydrated food products, such as powdered milk, therefore offer a valuable alternative to fresh products, as they do not require refrigeration and offer a substantially longer shelf life.
The water that has been removed in the production process can easily be added back to the milk powder by the consumer, resulting in the consumer drinking reconstituted milk which has the same nutritional benefits as fresh cows’ milk.