Chocolate milk: does a body good or harm?

The war against childhood obesity has set its sights on an unlikely new target: milk. It seems chocolate milk, a school lunch staple for generations, is the latest school menu item to come under fire for its high sugar content.

Like all milk, chocolate milk is fortified with vitamins and calcium, but it also contains about twice as much sugar as plain low-fat milk. Clearly the plain variety is the healthier choice, but its flavor is less popular than math tests with many students; if denied a chocolate option there’s a good chance thousands of kids will forgo milk all together at school. So while they’d be consuming less sugar, they’d also be getting less vitamins and calcium, which are essential for growing bodies.

Claire McCarthy, MD, a pediatrician and mother raising five children, shares her thoughts on the chocolate milk controversy, and how fixating on one part of a child’s diet or lifestyle may distract from the overall picture of a child’s health habits.

5 thoughts on “Chocolate milk: does a body good or harm?

  1. Maintain positive physical education and promote exercise from Preschool through 12th grade. It’s simple math, burn more calories than are consumed. Milk (regular, strawberry, chocolate, vanilla) is essential for kids to consume. I truly believe that more problems will result if milk consumption is diminished.

  2. As usual, Dr. McCarthy gives us a very practical and no-nonsense approach to parenting and medical practice. Thanks for your insights.

  3. Honestly I don’t like my child to drink cows milk at all unless its organic & growth hormone free. People should look into where their milk is coming from and understand corporate farming, you may forgo milk all together if you knew how it was created.

  4. I believe that as long as a child gets enough exercise runniing about outside when ever possible they will burn enough calorie that it won’t really matter wether they drink plain milk or chocolate milk. By the way isn’t it said that chocolate is good for you.

    concerned mother

  5. He’s a cutie Claire, I’m with him, I love chocolate milk, Phinn is still a bit too young for it, but I bet he’ll love it as well.

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