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Saturday, May 26, 2012

Debunking the Milk Myth

Milk is much more than just a drink; it’s a cultural phenomenon that can be traced back thousands of years ago. And still today, the milk myth resonates loud and clear: in 2001, the average American child consumed 104 quarts of cow’s milk.

Milk depletes the calcium from your bones

The milk myth has spread around the world based on the flawed belief that this protein and calcium-rich drink is essential to support good overall health and bone health in particular at any age. It is easy to understand that the confusion about milk’s imaginary benefits stems from the fact that it contains calcium – around 300 mg per cup.
But many scientific studies have shown an assortment of detrimental health effects directly linked to milk consumption. And the most surprising link is that not only do we barely absorb the calcium in cow’s milk (especially if pasteurized), but to make matters worse, it actually increases calcium loss from the bones. What an irony this is!

Here’s how it happens. Like all animal protein, milk acidifies the body pH which in turn triggers a biological correction. You see, calcium is an excellent acid neutralizer and the biggest storage of calcium in the body is – you guessed it… in the bones. So the very same calcium that our bones need to stay strong is utilized to neutralize the acidifying effect of milk. Once calcium is pulled out of the bones, it leaves the body via the urine, so that the surprising net result after this is an actual calcium deficit.
Knowing this, you’ll understand why statistics show that countries with the lowest consumption of dairy products also have the lowest fracture incidence in their population (there’s more on this later).
But the sad truth is that most mainstream health practitioners ignore these proven facts. I know it firsthand because when I was diagnosed with osteoporosis, my doctor recommended that I drink lots of milk in addition to taking Fosamax.

Cow’s milk is custom-designed for calves

Thanks to our creative ingenuity and perhaps related to our ancient survival needs, we adopted the dubious habit of drinking another species’ milk. Nobody can dispute that cow’s milk is an excellent food source for calves. Weighing around 100 pounds at birth, a calf typically gains approximately eight times its weight by the time it is weaned. But unlike humans, once calves are weaned, they never drink milk again. And the same applies to every mammalian species on this planet.

Also, each mammalian species has its own “designer” milk, and cow’s milk is no exception. For example, cow’s milk contains on average three times the amount of protein than human milk which creates metabolic disturbances in humans that have detrimental bone health consequences.
It’s important to bear in mind that mother’s milk is excellent nourishment for human babies, but its composition is very different from cow’s milk.

Scientific studies show that milk increases fracture risk

Many scientific studies contradict the conventional wisdom that milk and dairy consumption help reduce osteoporotic fractures. Surprisingly, studies demonstrating that milk and dairy products actually fail to protect bones from fractures outnumber studies that prove otherwise. Even drinking milk from a young age does not protect against future fracture risk but actually increases it. Shattering the “savings account” calcium theory, Cumming and Klineberg report their study findings as follows:
“Consumption of dairy products, particularly at age 20 years, was associated with an increased risk of hip fracture in old age. (“Case-Control Study of Risk Factors for Hip Fractures in the Elderly”. American Journal of Epidemiology. Vol. 139, No. 5, 1994).

And the 12 year long Harvard Nurses’ Health Study found that those who consumed the most calcium from dairy foods broke more bones than those who rarely drank milk. This is a broad study based on 77,761 women aged 34 through 59 years of age.
In the authors’ own words:
“These data do not support the hypothesis that higher consumption of milk or other food sources of calcium by adult women protects against hip or forearm fractures.” (Source: Feskanich D, Willett WC, Stampfer MJ, Colditz GA. Milk, dietary calcium, and bone fractures in women: a 12-year prospective study. American Journal of Public Health. 1997).

Milk is an acidifying animal protein

Like any other animal derived protein-rich food, milk has a positive potential renal acid load (PRAL) which triggers a protective biological reaction to neutralize all the damaging acidic protein before it reaches the kidneys.
The body is designed for survival, so it sacrifices bone density to protect the kidneys and urinary tract because the latter are essential to survival. And the most readily available source of acid neutralizer is in the bones. So even though milk contains calcium, it ends up sapping your bones of that crucial mineral.

Today’s milk is a processed food

Until the end of the 19th century in Europe and the beginning of the 20th century in the US, milk was consumed unpasteurized or raw. Later on, homogenization became the industry’s standard. These processes further alter milk’s chemistry and actually increase its detrimental acidifying effects.

Nowadays, milking cows are given antibiotics and most are also injected with a genetically engineered form of bovine growth hormone (rBGH). A man-made or synthetic hormone used to artificially increase milk production, rBGH also increases blood levels of the insulin-growth factor 1 (IGF-1) in those who drink it. And higher levels of IGF-1 are linked to several cancers.

This should not be ignored, especially in view of recent information by Samuel Epstein, MD, Professor of Environmental Medicine at the University of Illinois School of Public Health, and Chairman of the Cancer Prevention Coalition. In an article titled “Monsanto’s Hormonal Milk Poses Serious Risks of Breast Cancer, Besides Other Cancers” (http://www.preventcancer.com/press/releases/july8_98.htm, June 21, 1998) Dr. Epstein concludes that:
“Drinking rBGH milk would thus be expected to significantly increase IGF-1 blood levels and consequently to increase risks of developing breast cancer and promoting its invasiveness.”
(more about rBHG http://www.organicconsumers.org/rbghlink.cfm)

Source: http://saveourbones.com/osteoporosis-milk-myth/

All cow’s milk (both regular and “organic”) has 59 active hormones, countless allergens, lots of fat (unless it is skim) and cholesterol. Most cow’s milk also has perceptible quantities of herbicides, pesticides, dioxins up to 200 times the safe levels of dioxins, up to 53 powerful antibiotics, blood, pus, feces, bacteria and viruses (http://www.rense.com/general26/truth.htm). This milk can potentially have traces of anything the cow ate or was exposed to during its lifespan, including such things as residue from radioactive materials.

Of those 59 mentioned hormones, one is a powerful growth hormone called Insulin- like Growth Factor ONE (IGF-1). This hormone is essentially a “fuel cell” for any cancer. In fact, it has been proven that IGF-1 is the key factor in the growth and proliferation of every breast cancer; the medical world has clearly stated that IGF-1 is not only a key factor in the rapid growth and increase of prostate and colon cancers, but is suspect to promote and worsen ALL cancers, including those that are existing.

This is especially significant considering nearly 40% of women between the ages 40 and 50 have existing cancer in their breasts. IGF-1 is linked not only to rising cancer rates, but the growth of antibiotic resistant bacteria.
IGF-1 is a normal part of all milk -- and while newborns are supposed to grow quickly, what makes the 50% of obese American consumers (or any adult consumer in general) think they need substances that cause MORE growth? If the residual hormones in milk aren’t enough to scare you away from milk, surely the amount of other drugs, man-made chemicals, and dioxins are.

According to the World Health Organization, approximately 90% of the dioxins entering the human body come from dairy products and meat. Considering dioxins are some of the most toxic chemicals known to science, and the EPA has published a report confirming they are cancer hazards to humans, should we really be purposely ingesting substances known to contain them?

According to a recent study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, scientists have found through analysis that one single glass of milk can contain a delightful (or not) medley of up to 20 different kinds of painkillers, antibiotics and growth hormones. These medicinal residues, found in samples of cow, goat, and human breast milk, are from a variety of chemicals used to treat animal and human illness.
This research revealed that cow, goat, and human breast milk tested for traces of numerous anti-inflammatory drugs such as niflumic acid, mefenamic acid, flunixin, ibuprofen, diclofenac and ketoprofen -- all of which are commonly used painkillers for animals and humans.

Traces of other drugs, such as lipid regulators, anti-seizures, beta-blockers, antibiotics and various hormones (such as ethinylestradiol and estrone) were found as well.
A total of 20 pharmacologically active substances were found in the various types of milk in the study. The highest quantities of drug residues and hormones were found in cow’s milk. Researchers used an extremely sensitive testing method, called Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry, in order to ensure the testing was successful and accurate.
The amount of these drugs found in milk may have be minute; however, the research results make it entirely too clear how prevalent man-made substances, drugs, and chemicals really are in our food chain.
Researchers believe that the growth-promoting hormones and drugs are all given to cattle and cows at some point, or are often present within contaminated cattle feed.

Cow milk substitutes

Instead of cow (industrial) milk, try unsweetened almond milk, not only because it is alkalizing (as almonds are), but also because it’s delicious and tastes very similar to milk. If almond milk is hard to get, you can also try rice or soy milk. (make sure it’s not made with genetically modified soy)

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/033075_milk_chemical_contamination.html#ixzz1vurq5a9h