Why Milk Could Be The Key To Keeping Your Brain Healthy

Got Milk

Over the years there have been any number of foods that have branded as the secret to success in life, whether physically or intellectually. As is often the case with these things, many of the foods that are mentioned are seldom on the bestseller list at the local supermarket, so their consumption remains something of a struggle.

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A recent paper might have come to our rescue. It’s discovered some new properties of a product that I’m fairly sure most of us not only have a ready supply of at home, but quite probably consume a lot of each day already.

The Wonders of Milk

The study suggests that a humble glass of milk contains a whole heap of good stuff that are linked with greater levels of antioxidants inside the brain. Whilst the health benefits of milk may be well known, the study goes on to reveal that we generally fail to drink the recommended amount of the stuff, suggesting that there could be an easy way to boost our performance.

“We have long thought of milk as being very important for your bones and very important for your muscles. This study suggests that it could be important for your brain as well,” the authors say.

The study revealed that people had higher glutathione levels when they also drank more milk. Glutathione is a useful chemical in that it is known to help us stave off the side effects of oxidative stress in our brains, which the researchers explain is crucial to our peak performance.

“You can basically think of this damage like the build-up of rust on your car. If left alone for a long time, the buildup increases and it can cause damaging effects,” they say.

Previous studies have revealed that oxidative stress often plays a key role in the onset of diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimers. The paper reveals that antioxidants are our bodies natural defense system to combat this damage, so the more antioxidants we have in our brain, the better equipped we are to stave off threats.

The results emerged when a group of healthy adults were tracked over a period of time, and then placed inside a brain scanner to examine what was going on inside their brains.

“Our equipment enables us to understand complex processes occurring that are related to health and disease. The advanced magnetic resonance technology allowed us to be in a unique position to get the best pictures of what was going on in the brain,” the researchers say.

How much milk should we drink?

Most recommendations from health organisations around the world suggest we should consume three portions of dairy each day, which is something many in the west fail to achieve. The study highlights how the higher levels of dairy we consume, the greater the number of antioxidants present inside the brain.

“If we can find a way to fight this by instituting lifestyle changes including diet and exercise, it could have major implications for brain health,” the researchers conclude.

How much milk do you consume each day? Do you think it has a positive effect on your health? Your thoughts and comments below please...


Dairy intake is associated with brain glutathione concentration in older adults