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July 9, 2007 | Comments Off on Content Niche Site Web

 

It hitches a ride

Zuzu posted a note with a curious question: why does non-fat milk contain cholesterol? It does? I raced down to my refrigerator and, low and behold, a glass of non-fat milk contains 5 mg of cholesterol. Huh. Funny. Seems counterintuitive.

To read a simple explanation provided by the Extension Service at Iowa State University, click here . They say, in part, In animals, cholesterol is part of the cell membrane structure of all types of cells. Removing the skin from chicken removes most the fat but only some of the cholesterol Because cholesterol is an integral part of animal cells, all animal muscle is similar in cholesterol content. Fish, chicken, turkey, beef and pork vary widely in fat but have fairly equal amounts of cholesterol”about 20 milligrams per ounce of meat.

In dairy, however, the amount of cholesterol depends on the amount of fat. Milk is secreted from animal cells” it is not made of cells, like meat. It has no cholesterol-containing cell membranes. But because cholesterol is fat soluble, it rides with the fats in milk and milk-based foods. The more fat a dairy product contains, the more cholesterol it will also contain.

Perhaps milk producers remove the fat during the milk skimming process but dont bother to filter out the cholesterol? Or maybe they cant remove all of it in a cost effective manner?

On a somewhat related but kooky note, read this article about scientists in New Zealand who chanced upon a cow ” they named her Marge” with a genetic mutation, causing her to produce milk that is lower in fat and higher in omega-3 fatty acids. Yes, they are now breeding a herd of cows that produce milk containing 1 percent fat (compared to 3.5 percent in whole milk.) The article doesnt mention if Marges milk contains less cholesterol, so I guess well have to wait and see. They expect the mutant milk to be on the market by 2011.

Whew thanks for uncovering such an interesting subject, Zuzu!


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