Myth: Dairy is fattening.

FACT: Foods with a high calorie or fat content are often referred to as being ‘fattening’. However, individual foods should not be categorised as fattening without taking into consideration how much of the food is consumed and what the overall diet is composed of. As weight gain is directly linked to an over-consumption of calories, portion size and how frequently it is eaten is what really determines if a food is fattening.

For example, a 200ml glass of semi-skimmed milk provides less than 5% of both the calories and fat in a standard 2,000kcal diet. Therefore, dairy foods can be consumed as part of a balanced diet, without being ‘fattening’.

The Department of Health recommends three servings from the ‘milk, yogurt and cheese’ food group each day e.g. 200ml of milk, 125g of yogurt or 25g of cheese. Higher fat products such as butter and cream should be used sparingly as they are higher in calories, but they can still be enjoyed as part of a healthy diet when used in moderation.

Did you know? Low-fat dairy foods provide the same vitamins and minerals as whole milk varieties.