What is Skim Milk?

It is amazing how many different types of milk are out in the market these days. It is true that picking the right one can be quite confusing because each one is labeled differently and the grocery’s aisle for milk offers so many options.

A lot of people say that skim milk is a good option. But what is skim milk? What makes this different from other types of milk? Would it be beneficial for your health if you switch to this one too?

Skim milk looks slightly different from other types of milk. Yes, it has the same fluid consistency. However, the color is faintly bluish. Do not worry that the milk may be spoiled if you notice its color. This bluish hue is a result of the processing.

How it is made

The main reason why it is called skim milk is because of the process involved in making it. Traditionally, skimming milk takes plenty of time. After milking, this is left to sit for a while in a clean and sterilized container. Because of its natural composition, the tendency is for fat to rise on top. Then, the bottom part would be purely milk.

what is skimmed milk

photo credit: flickr.com/f_shields

The fat that will rise is removed carefully, leaving only the milk. This would not be rendered useless though because this fat is used for making other dairy products like butter. The remaining milk can then be processed further so it can be drank or made into cheese.

Since manufacturers these days need to produce skim milk in bigger volume, they do not simply let it stand and wait until the fat rises. There are machineries and heavy-duty centrifuge which allows the fat and the milk to separate in a much shorter time.

Health Benefits

How come skim milk is considered as a healthier option? There is no doubt that people these days are becoming more and more careful about the amount of fat that they ingest on a daily basis. If you are also lowering your fat intake, skim milk is a good option.

The process of separating milk fat from the rest of the components is an effective way of reducing the total fat content. Technically, it can only be considered as skim milk if it has 0.5% fat or less. This is much lower than whole milk which has 3.5% fat.

In some countries, skim milk is also labeled as fat-free. This does not mean that there is absolutely no fat in it. It is only labeled as such because as a rule, if the fat content is insignificant, it can already be labeled as fat-free. However, as means of protecting consumers, some countries require manufacturers to label their products as skim milk and indicate the amount of fat in it. That way, consumers would not be misled.

Skim milk is preferred by many because of the reduced fat content. It has to be noted though that this type of milk may have a different taste. Because of the absence of fat and the processing involved, the flavor may no longer be as rich.

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