Diet - Is Dairy Food Good For Us?

Can we trust the Dairy industry claim that in order to get strong bones we need to absorb a sufficient quantity of their products. Is that claim justified or not?

The dairy food industry is spending huge amounts of money to make us believe we are doing our body a lot of good by eating/drinking their products. But, what is the truth?

It is interesting to notice that human beings are the only animals on this planet that keep on drinking milk after they have been weaned off their mother's breast milk. In the words of Dr Michael Klaper MD:

"It's not natural for humans to drink cow's milk. Human milk is for humans. Cow's milk is for calves. You have no more need of cow's milk than you do rats milk, horses milk or elephant's milk. Cow's milk is a high fat fluid exquisitely designed to turn a 65 lb baby calf into a 600 lb cow. That's what cow's milk is for!"

Why is it that we believe that because something is good for a new-born calf, it is good for us? Don't we realise that the genetics of a calf are different from ours?

* It takes 45 days for a calf to double its weight and cow's milk is 15% protein.

* It takes 180 days for a human to double its weight and mother's milk is only 7% protein.

* The protein in cow's milk is mainly casein. This is poorly assimilated in the human body.

According to Dr. John R. Christopher, N.D., M.H., there is up to 20 times more casein in cow's milk than human milk which makes the nutrients in cow's milk difficult (if not impossible) for humans to assimilate.

Another factor is that to absorb calcium properly, the body needs a similar quantity of magnesium. As dairy does not contain a sufficient quantity of magnesium, only 25% of the calcium is absorbed. The body uses calcium to build the mortar on arterial walls, which becomes atherosclerotic plaques. The surplus calcium is then converted into kidney stones. Excess of calcium also leads to arthritis and gout.

Does milk prevent bone fractures? Let's get this most commonly asked question out of the way.

Many people believe that if they stop eating calf's food, their bones will collapse in a heap. There could be nothing further from the truth.

In a 12 years Harvard study of 78,000 nurses who drank three or more glasses of milk per day did not reduce fractures at all. An Australian study showed the same thing.

The fact is that the more dairy people consumed, the more likely they are to suffer hip fractures. People in North America and Northern Europe break two to three times more bones than people in Asians and Africans countries who have the lowest calcium intake. Europe and North America consume the highest levels of dairy foods in the world.

In the USA, one in two women and one in eight men over age 50 break a bone because of osteoporosis. In China where people eat less than half the calcium recommended by the USDA and seem healthy. Among women over 50, the hip fracture rate appeared to be one fifth as high as in Western nations.

The problem is not so much that we do not get enough calcium. It is that we lose too much calcium. This happens when we eat regular portions of meat, poultry, eggs or dairy products. All these products increase acidity in the body and.. one of the body's way of getting rid of this acid is to draw on its reserve of calcium and other minerals from bones and teeth to make the blood more alkaline.

Vegetarians will need about 50% less calcium than meat eaters because they lose much less calcium in their urine.

Dr Joseph Mercola offers an explanation for this on his web site:

"Your bones are a mineral bank for your body storing 99 percent of the calcium, 85 percent of the phosphorus and 60 percent of the magnesium. When mineral levels are low in the blood, osteoclasts break down bone to free up these minerals and deposit them in the blood. Excessive animal protein intake increases the need for calcium to neutralise the acid formed from digesting animal protein. This means that drinking processed milk destroys bones during the digestive process".

What is the best way to prevent osteoporosis? Dark green vegetables (the darker the better), broccoli, sesame seeds will provide all the calcium you need and why not.. sea vegetables.. Cooked collard greens, cabbage, spring greens, broccoli tops and kale are especially good.

According to Dr. Neal Barnard, author of Turn Off the Fat Genes (2001) and several other books on diet and health, Calcium absorption from vegetables such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, mustard greens, turnip greens, kale, and some other leafy green vegetables range between 40 percent and 64 percent. Calcium absorption from dairy is a poor 30% and with the many problems we now know.

On milsucks com researchers report on the best way to get strong bones:

"* Getting enough vitamin D (if you don't spend any time in the sun, be sure to take a supplement or eat fortified foods).

* Eliminating animal protein (for a variety of reasons, animal protein causes severe bone deterioration).

* Limiting alcohol consumption (alcohol is toxic to the cells that form bones and inhibits the absorption of calcium).

* Limiting salt intake (sodium leaches calcium out of the bones)

* Not smoking (studies have shown that women who smoke one pack of cigarettes a day have 5 to 10 percent less bone density at menopause than non-smokers).

* Getting plenty of exercise. Studies have concluded that physical exercise is the key to building strong bones (more important than any other factor). In a study published in the British Medical Journal, 1,400 men and women were observed over a period of 15 years. It was found that exercise offered the best protection against hip fractures. It also showed that reducing dairy consumption did not seem to be a risk factor." And Penn State University researchers found that bone density is significantly affected by how much exercise girls get during their teen years, when 40 to 50 percent of their skeletal mass is developed.

* Consistent with previous research, the Penn State study, which was published in Pediatrics (2000), the journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, showed that calcium intake, which ranged from 500 to 1,500 mg per day, has no lasting effect on bone health. "We (had) hypothesized that increased calcium intake would result in better adolescent bone gain. Needless to say, we were surprised to find our hypothesis refuted," one researcher explained." What about dairy food and cancer?

A study published in 1989 showed that in Scandinavia and the Netherlands (two areas with higher milk consumption) also had higher breast cancer rates.

What else is bad in the dairy food I eat?

Milk contains no fibre or complex carbohydrates and is laden with saturated fat and cholesterol.

As read in the notmilk com newsletter on 27 February 2002: "ALL cow's milk has 59 active hormones, scores of allergens, fat and cholesterol. Most cow's milk has measurable quantities of herbicides, pesticides, dioxin's (up to 2,200 times the safe levels), up to 52 powerful antibiotics, blood, pus, faeces, bacteria and viruses. (Cow's milk can have traces of anything the cow ate... including such things as radioactive fallout from nuke testing ... (the 50's strontium-90 problem)."

ONE cubic centimetre (cc) of commercial cow's milk is allowed to have up to 750,000 somatic cells (common name is "PUS") and 20,000 live bacteria... before it is kept off the market. That amounts to a whopping 20 million life squiggly bacteria and up to 750 MILLION pus cells per litre.

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About The Author, Patrick Hamouy
Patrick Hamouy teaches various forms of "Alternative Therapies" at his school in West London and Brighton (UK). Topics include Indian Head Massage, Reiki Healing, Anatomy and Physiology, Emotional Freedom Therapy (EFT), Oriental Diagnosis, Diet and Psychic Development. He gives consultations in Macrobiotic Diet, Emotional Freedom Therapy (EFT) and advises on the removal of toxic products from the home environment. Full information at: http://www.therapies.com