T Nation

John Berardi--dairy and insulin

In a recent post you wrote that most dairy products have a low GI but cause high insulin release so, “the carbs dont dump into the blood very rapidly. In fact it might be an advantage because insulin goes up but only gets a controlled amount of carbs per unit time”

Two questions: (1) Does this contraindicate eating dairy foods while dieting, since when insulin is up, utilizing body fat is inhibited? (2) Does this contraindicate eating other carb sources with dairy foods while dieting, since the dairy will drive the insulin up and the other carbs will provide the material, even when lactose is lagging behind?


You bring up some interesting points…1) you may do better without dairy during dieting. in fact when i first started competing, most popular gym folklore stated that milk should be avoided on contest diets. we never knew why though. maybe that anecdotal evidence was correct and the insulin response to milk was bad for fat loss. no studies have been shown on this however so it’s still only speculation. 2) since the answer to 1 is yes, then the answer to 2 should be the same. again, im not certain if this would be a problem, but because of the high insulin release, it seems that milk might not be a great diet food.

Is this really significant if only small amounts is consumed at a time ?

I drink a large glass of skim milk with 3 out
of 5 daily meals right now and I seem to lose
fat as the same rate as with a non-dairy diet.
However, I´ve read that insulin-sensitivity is
realated to bodyfat, and I was at 9,5 % when
I -started- dieting…

Could it be that for very lean individuals carbs (whatever source) isn´t that big a problem ?

Would this apply to things like cheese as well?

And what about casein powder, or a casein-whey mixture? Do they cause high insulin output?

Complicating the whole issue is that Mario DiPasquale recently wrote something on his site about dairy maybe aiding weightloss. He cites a study (Journal of the American College of Nutrition 2000;19:754-760) that has woman with higher calcium intakes from dairy foods losing more weight, and he also mentions that dairy foods have CLA. The female hormonal situation might react to dairy differently.