How Milk May Contribute to Childhood Obesity

 

We’ve known that breastfed infants may be protected against obesity later in life for more than 30 years, but why? It may be the formula.

Giving infants formula based on cow’s milk presents an unusual situation. Cow’s milk is designed to put nearly two pounds a day onto a growing calf, 40 times the growth rate of human infants (see Formula for Childhood Obesity.)

The perfect food for humans, finely tuned over millions of years, is human breast milk. Remarkably, among all mammalian species, the protein content of human milk is the lowest. The excessive protein content of cow’s milk-based formula is thought to be what sets the child up for obesity later in life.

And then, instead of being weaned, we continue to drink milk. The question thus arises, as to whether consumption of a growth-promoting substance from another species throughout childhood fundamentally alters processes of human growth and maturation. Continue reading “How Milk May Contribute to Childhood Obesity”