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Is Powdered Milk Bad For You?

Online sources claim that dry milk is dangerous because it contains oxidized cholesterol. What’s the truth?

By
Monica Reinagel, MS, LD/N, CNS,
November 22, 2010
Episode #115

What about Protein Powders Made from Eggs or Milk?

You don’t need to worry about protein powders made from eggs, however. These are made from egg whites, which are cholesterol free. By the same token, baked goods or other products containing powdered egg whites are not a concern. Whey protein powders, on the other hand, are usually not cholesterol-free and the cholesterol they contain will probably be oxidized.

As you probably remember, I’m not a huge fan of protein powders because as a general rule I prefer to get my nutrition from foods rather than supplements. However, if you use protein powders and you’re keen to avoid oxidized cholesterol, you’ll be best off with an egg-white based powder or a vegetarian protein powder from peas, rice, or hemp.

How Can You Protect Yourself from Oxidized Cholesterol?

Finally, even if you eliminate all sources of oxidized cholesterol from your diet, you’re still not completely protected. Remember that cholesterol also gets oxidized in your body. Perhaps the most important thing you can do to protect yourself is to eat your veggies.

I know, I know; that’s my answer to everything. But here’s why: Fresh fruits and vegetables are rich in antioxidants and antioxidants are your best defense against oxidized cholesterol. Exercise also enhances the ability of blood vessels to resist oxidative damage so if you’re not already a regular reader, be sure to check out Get Fit Guy’s Quick and Dirty Tips to Shape Up and Slim Down.

More Information About Cholesterol and Your Health

As my colleague The Housecall Doctor points out, the relationship between your cholesterol and your risk of heart disease is a complicated one. For more, see his article:  Should You Be Worried About Your Cholesterol?

And as I’ve talked about in previous articles, most of the cholesterol in your body does not come from the food you eat but, rather, is manufactured by your own liver. See also: How to lower your cholesterol levels with diet.

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Have a great week and remember to eat something good for me!

REFERENCES:   

Oxidized cholesterol in the diet is a source of oxidized lipoproteins in humans Journal of Lipid Research, 2003 

The role of dietary oxidized cholesterol and oxidized fatty acids in the development of atherosclerosis Molecular Nutrition and Food Research, 2005

Powdered Milk image from Shutterstock

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