To Dairy or Not To Dairy
Dairy is one food that always sparks controversy! Some claim that dairy is healthy if it’s pasteurized, low-fat and eaten in moderation (www.mypyramid.gov). Some say that plenty of raw, full-fat dairy is a health food (www.westonaprice.org), while others insist that the only good dairy is no dairy at all (www.pcrm.org). Here are some of the issues to consider when deciding if dairy is right for you. And remember: we are all made differently (bioindividual), so what works for your friend/mom/sister/coworker may or may not be right for you.
Calcium & Bone Health
Proponents of milk say that milk is a great source of calcium, a mineral that is essential for bone health. However, studies show that countries with the highest milk consumption also have the highest osteoporosis rates. Countries with low rates of milk consumption have low rates of osteoporosis. Some say that better options for strong bones include dark leafy greens, bone broths, sea vegetables and other whole foods, combined with natural sunshine, exercise and Vitamin D.
Milk sold in stores is fortified with vitamin D2, a form that the body does not utilize as well as D3. However, raw dairy from grass-fed cows contains naturally occurring vitamin D3.
Grain and Soy-Fed vs. Grass-Fed Cows
Most dairy in the US comes from factory farms, where the animals are fed products not natural to a cow’s diet, such as grain, corn and soy. Labeling that says the animals were fed a “natural grain diet” are misleading as grass, not grains/corn/soy are a cow’s real natural diet – cows are grazing animals that naturally feed on grass. The same applies to chickens so eggs from those chickens are not natural despite the labeling. In fact, the unnatural diet makes them sick, which causes them to need antibiotics.
Studies such as The China Study suggest that consuming animal protein, including dairy, promotes cancer growth, and reducing or eliminating animal protein can stop and reverse cancer growth. (What would happen to the billion dollar cancer industry if everyone cut back or eliminated animal products and suddenly got healthy without chemo, radiation, or surgery?) Studies also show that reducing animal products can reverse other chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes.
Where do you stand in the dairy debate? Are you in the “Got Milk?” camp, do you use dairy products sparingly, or have you eliminated them all together?