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You Ask, I Answer: Calcium Absorption from Pasteurized Milk

image{0}[2]One of my friends said that at a wellness workshop she recently attended, a dietitian said that pasteurized milk is not nutritious because the pasteurization process renders calcium unabsorbable to humans.

Apparently, the best way to get calcium is from unpasteurized milk and cheese. 

Is that true?

— Deborah Wolper
(City withheld), IL

Wow.  I have heard my share of heinous nutrtional inaccuracies, but I think this one might take the cake.

First off, I sincerely hope this completely erroneous “fact” did not come out of the mouth of a Registered Dietitian.  If so, I want to apologize on his or her behalf.

Pasteurization has absolutely no effect on calcium levels on dairy, and much less on its bioavailability.

Even if that were true, it would still be inaccurate to then coin pasteurized milk as “not nutritious.”  Calcium aside, dairy is a very good source of protein, B vitamins, magnesium, and phosphorus.


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