So, back to the milk. Is cow’s milk good for you? These are the questions I encourage you to ask yourself:
1) Who/what kind of animal is cow’s milk designed for? (a cow)
2) Are YOU a cow? (I hope not)
3) Do cows continue to drink milk after they are mature/weaned? (no)
4) Are YOU grown? (notice I didn’t say “mature”…I hope you still like acting like a kid sometimes :))
5) Do cows, or ANY animal you can think of, drink milk from another animal, and continue to do so post-weaning? (no, no, NO!))
Each species of mammal creates milk specially designed for that species’ growth needs, at birth and until weaning. Cow’s milk is designed to DOUBLE a calf’s weight in fifty days. I doubt you would enjoy the same affect! It also contains almost three times as much protein as human breast milk. The differences are many more than I will list here.
Besides the differences in the chemistry between human milk and that of cow’s, or any other species, a significant argument for excluding or minimizing cow’s milk in your family’s diet is the fact that it is heat processed (pasteurized). Heat denatures proteins & enzymes; in other words, you are not going to get the “good stuff” from the milk because it’s been “killed”. Also, the typical dairy farm compromises the cow’s lifestyle. They may be fed stale grains, grown in nutritionally depleted soil. Unless they are free to roam, they get no exercise. They often are pumped with hormones to get them to produce more milk, and given antibiotics since they are unhealthy, due to their lifestyle. These chemicals come out in the milk.
Many people are “lactose intolerant”. This is actually a NORMAL condition, because our bodies do not produce the enzyme lactase which is needed to break down lactose after early childhood (because it’s not expected that we would still be breastfeeding) !
“What about calcium?” you ask. While it’s true that milk has lots, it is also so high in protein that your body cannot absorb the calcium it gets at the same time. Not only can't you get calcium, but the high protein content actually causes your body to REMOVE calcium from your bones to act as a buffer in your blood. That’s right, drinking milk actually causes you to LOSE calcium from your bones. The best place to get calcium is from dark green leafy vegetables. If you are concerned you are not getting enough of those, I highly recommend JuicePlus+ to help you get what you need. Almonds are also a good source of calcium; this fresh almond milk is what we use most of the time instead of cow's milk.
As far as osteoporosis, there is NO evidence that increased dairy consumption decreases the occurrence of osteoporosis. In fact, the countries with the highest milk intake also have the highest rates of osteoporosis. This probably is because of what's stated above: your body REMOVES calcium from your bones to deal with the milk you put in. The dairy council has done a number on us! Not that I blame them.
What to drink instead of milk? Well, water is what should be drunk on a regular basis. But as far as milk alternatives, many options exist.
See my post on Making Fresh Almond Milk for milk alternatives.
This made me laugh so much that I had to include it!
Here is a very good article about osteoporosis: http://www.betterbones.com/osteoporosis/top10myths.aspx
And this is a fantastic site with detailed articles on many physical conditions and how they relate to milk consumption: http://www.notmilk.com/