According to a study, published in the journal Advances in Nutrition, children who consume full-fat dairy products do not show an increased risk of obesity or heart disease.
The study reviewed 29 studies from around the world that examined consumption of full-fat dairy products in children.
What the latest study found
There was no clear link between the consumption of whole-fat dairy products and weight gain, high cholesterol, or high blood pressure in children.
Whole-fat dairy products are not associated with increased levels of weight gain or obesity.
Reduced-fat dairy is generally recommended for both adults and children over the age of two years due to its lower energy and saturated fat content. However, studies suggest children who consumed low-fat over full-fat dairy were actually replacing those calories from fat with other foods.
This suggests that low-fat dairy is not as filling as whole-fat dairy, which may lead kids to consume more of other foods. Health effects may depend on what these replacement foods are.
According to the scientists, more research is needed to inform evidence-based guidelines for parents. They said whole-fat dairy may play an important role in a balanced diet for growing children. Dairy is a good dietary source of nutrients for healthy development, including protein, calcium, potassium, phosphorus and several vitamins.