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January 2nd 08, 08:29 PM
Skim milk is the latest sacred cow to be (possibly) put out to
pasture.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080102/hl_nm/nonfat_cancer_dc

EXCERPTS

The consumption of low-fat or nonfat milk may increase the risk of the
malignancy, according to the results of two studies published in the
American Journal of Epidemiology.

....

Dr. Song-Yi Park, from the University of Hawaii in Honolulu, and
colleagues, analyzed data from subjects enrolled in the Multiethnic
Cohort Study. This study, conducted between 1993 and 2002, included
adults between 45 and 75 years old, were primarily from five different
ethnic or racial groups, and lived in California or Hawaii.

A total of 82,483 men from the study completed a quantitative food
frequency questionnaire and various factors, such as weight, smoking
status, and education levels were also noted, Park's group said.

During an average follow-up period of 8 years, 4,404 men developed
prostate cancer. There was no evidence that calcium or vitamin D from
any source increased the risk of prostate cancer. This held true
across all racial and ethnic groups.

In an overall analysis of food groups, the consumption of dairy
products and milk were not associated with prostate cancer risk, the
authors found. Further analysis, however, suggested that low-fat or
nonfat milk did increase the risk of localized tumors or non-
aggressive tumors, while whole milk decreased this risk.

January 2nd 08, 10:07 PM
Take a look at the exact analysis - do not take their word that their
analysis is accurate. I'm not suggesting that their statistics are
wrong, but that their reasoning is. For example, did the lowfat/nofat
group consume the same amount of fat overall? If so, they were likely
consuming more unsaturated fatty acids, and the molecular-level
evidence makes clear that a fatty acid that is very common in many
peoples' diets these days, linoleic acid, is basically a cancer
initiator as well as a "cancer fuel" (through metabolization).
Otherwise, there is the possibility that fat stores are being tapped
by the body (if on a low fat diet), but the key point I would make is
that a no fat milk has no (or hardly any) lipids, and the lipids cause
the cancer - there's nothing else in the no fat milk that is different
from full fat milk that could cause more cancers. As usual, a food
item is being blamed for something it simply can't do. Rather, it's
the dietary context, and that is something these
"epidemiological" (statistical) studies are not capable of
addressing. It's also crucial to distinguish between low fat milk and
no fat milk (due to what is known about lipids). Did they do that?
It doesn't sound like they did.