Is Full Fat milk better than Skim??

This week I wanted to discuss the theories about full fat vs low fat or skim milk.

The first theory

Processing adds more sugar to skim/low fat milk. This is completely untrue, for flavoured milks, but for skim milk, completely different.

Let me show you two nutrition panels.










Look at the ingredients that are written. Full fat or skimmed milk – no additional ingredients have been added other than vitamin A and D, which I will discuss why in the following theory.

What is different is the fat/protein/carb content. As the fat has been taken out of the product both the protein and carbohydrate (lactose) will increase as a result (by 2g), thus increasing the protein and carbs in serve. This is why both protein and carbohydrate has slightly higher.

Number one busted! There is no additional sugar added to milk!

The second theory

The next one I want to address is full fat is healthier option than skim milk. Well it depends what your goal is, for me, when I break down the nutritional content of the diet, I look at all vitamins and minerals including the protein/carbohydrates and fats per meal.

For FF milk, Vitamin A & D are fat soluble vitamins which are stored in the fat content of the milk. When the milk is skimmed, these nutrients are removed from the product, but the manufactures add the Vitamin A & D into the product. Even for the minimal losses, typically these are found in consuming a good diet of fruits and vegetables and spending 10 minutes a day outside in the sun.

I Look at it as, if you are not looking to lose body fat, then go ahead and consume Full fat milk. However if you are looking for weight loss, cutting out the fat from the product takes out a good portion of calories which could be used elsewhere.

Not only this, if milk is in the post workout meal in a smoothie for example, the fat will slow down the digestion of the protein and carbohydrate. Post exercise, we need the protein as fast as possible to help begin the muscle repair process, and the carbohydrates are needed to fuel that process. So it is vital that the body digests these proteins/carbs as fast as possible. As a result, fat is not the best nutrient at this time of day.

Skim milk is also lower in saturated fat (bad fat), which if consumed in quite a large/excessive amount each day, then may not assist in maintaining healthy triglyceride/cholesterol levels. However, if you only consume milk in small amounts each day, you should be fine, unless your diet is significantly high in other animal proteins.

Pre Training Nutrition

Fueling your body appropriately around training can make quite a difference on your training, recovery and stamina throughout the training session. So today I want to discuss nutrition prior to exercise.

Prior to training, I always focus on a combined protein and carbohydrate source around 1 hour before the session begins. Why? Well think about it this way. Say you decided to drive from Brisbane to Sydney, and you decided not to fill up your car with fuel, how far do you think you would get? Probably not a very far away! The same goes for training, if you haven’t eaten anything in a few hours, or if you did eat and it was something low in carbs. I guarantee you will only hit your training session hard for a very short time period, maybe one or two movements of your strength work, or get halfway through a cardio piece and feel like giving up? Does that sound familiar?

If you do not fuel your body and prepare it for your exercise a couple things will happen.

  1. You will not burn as many calories on a full tank of food rather than empty. The more energy you have the longer the intensity of the session will remain. The faster you will run, concentrating will become easier, weights will not feel as heavy because you have a greater capacity to move it.
  2. The harder you work the more muscle cells you will damage. This means when you refuel your body post training you will have the opportunity to increase muscle mass and it will also be of a better quality. The more muscle mass you have the faster your metabolism will be and the more you can eat 😉 WINNING!

The types of food I like to suggest prior to training are typically Low GI, which means the carbohydrate is digested slowly in order to give the body a nice sustained fuel source.

For example:

  • Muesli (carbohydrate) and Chobani (protein) plain yoghurt – add a tsp of honey if you do not like the tart taste of the yoghurt
  • Tuna/salmon/chicken breast (protein) sandwich – wholegrain (carbohydrate)
  • 1-2 Raisin toast + 100g of low fat cottage cheese
  • Homemade protein balls – protein, dates, nuts and fruit
  • Oats with sultanas, honey, low fat milk and small serve of protein powder
  • Large piece of fruit (mango/banana/apple/pear) + a protein shake or

If you are someone who trains first thing in the morning – try a piece of toast or piece of fruit! Last resort drink your carbs instead (100% juice/coconut water/smoothie)

Pick an option that works for you, have it an hour prior to exercise if you can and I guarantee if you do not normally have much prior, you will see a big difference in your training session!

Chow Mein Mince

1 tbl olive oil

1 brown onion, sliced

1 large carrot, peeled and grated

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 small knob ginger, crushed

100g snow peas, sliced

1/4 – 1/2 small head green cabbage, shredded

500g chicken mince ( turkey breast/extra lean beef mince)

1.5 tb fish sauce

4 tsp curry powder

salt, pepper

1 spring onion, sliced, for garnish



Prepare all vegetables as directed. Heat the olive oil  in a large frying pan or a wok over a high heat until hot. Add the onion, carrot, garlic and ginger and sauté for 3-4 minutes until softened but not browned. Add the cabbage and cook for 3-4 minutes more.

Add the mince and the snow peas and continue cooking for around 5 minutes, stirring regularly to break up the mince. Add the curry powder, and fish sauce and continue to cook, stirring for another 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Garnish with the sliced spring onion and enjoy!!

Makes 5 serves – add some extra salad or lettuce if you wish – if you have exercised prior, add 1/2 C of egg noodles or 80g of vermicelli rice noodles per serve


Higher Carbohydrate options

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The muesli bars are good options for before exercise only. The wraps and bread is great for lunches or breakfast. Good option cereals, rice and noodle options. Again be careful of your portion sizes with some of these products (rice/noodles/cereal) in particular.



If you want to add sauces to salads etc. Here are the better options. Key word better! Always pick the most salt reduced products available.

I have an example below of two different soy sauces – have a look at the difference between the sodium contents. Soy sauce is definitely not the best option so please try and avoid if possible.


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The Following are a couple alright drink options. However water should always be priority one!

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Snack options

Below are great snack options that I promote for everyday consumption. However please do be careful of your portion size. It is easy to consume more than needed 332 331 330 329 328 315305 302 301 300 292