Dairy products are a very important part of  healthy nutritional plan.  Make sure to choose fat-free or 1 percent when eating dairy products. This really helps to cut out the saturated fat. This minor change to your daily dairy choice will pay dividends with your health ... and your waist.

You have four basic choices when you buy milk; whole, 2 percent, 1 percent or skim.  We would like you to choose 1 percent or skim because the fat content is much lower in these two choices. Let’s take a look at the fat content for these four types of milk. You’ll be amazed that 1 percent  and 2 percent are a lot higher in fat than you expected.

Whole milk has 150 calories and 48 percent fat -which is extremely high in fat.

2 percent milk has 120 calories and if you can believe it has 37 percent  fat.  Yes, 2 percent milk actually comes in at 37 percent  fat ... that's because its based on the weight of the content --not the actual content.  so --it pays to start investigating labels.

1  percent milk is 105 calories and a very healthy 22 percent fat.

Your best choice is Skim milk which has only 90 calories and is fat free.

And, if you choose skim over whole milk, those 60 less calories make a huge difference day in day out.  In the course of the year, you would save 21,900 calories and 6 pounds of fat.  Not to mention that the fat in milk is saturated or an unhealthy fat!

Fitting in dairy is easy.  You could add a 1-cup (8 ounce) serving of skim or 1 % milk to your breakfast meal and a half cup or 4 ounce serving to lunch and dinner meals.

Another alternative is to try 100-calorie low-fat yogurt or homemade sugar-free pudding made with skim milk.  Other healthy choices could include Nonfat Yogurt, Nonfat Cottage Cheese, Skim or reduced fat Ricotta Cheese,  Skim or reduced fat American Cheese, or Skim Mozzarella Cheese.

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