Got Milk? Even so that might not be good enough. You gotta love those commercials for 'Got Milk?' but the fact is that the milk you drink might be the source of many of your families health issues, especially your children. As it turns out "Got Milk?" isn't such a good idea after all, unless you "Got Raw Milk?".
Lets take a look at the over the counter pasteurized and homogenized milk sold in millions of grocery stores around the world and that just might be sitting in your refrigerator right now. The very idea that milk has to be pasteurized and homogenized suggests that there is something wrong with milk in the first place. In fact the urban rumor in some communities is that unprocessed raw milk could even kill you! Emphasis here on rumor. You could also just as easily die from brushing your teeth but its unlikely.
The process of pasteurization was invented by scientist Louis Pasteur in 1862 to improve the preservation of wine, a process now used by the dairy industry on mass. Pasteurization is achieved by heating milk to 145 degrees fahrenheit [62.7 celsius] for 30 minutes and then cooling and packaging it immediately, which according to the USA's Food and Drug Administration, "destroys harmful bacteria without significantly changing milk's nutritional value". The process slows microbial growth in milk. Pasteurization is not intended to kill all micro-organisms in milk. Instead pasteurization aims to reduce the number of viable pathogens so they are unlikely to cause disease.
In 1938, milk-borne outbreaks constituted 25% of all disease outbreaks from food and water in the USA. Today that figure is 1%, in part because of pasteurization, says Caroline Smith DeWaal, food safety director at the Center for Science in the Public Interest in Washington, DC.
Pasteurization is " one of the most significant public health successes of all time," says Michael Lynch, an expert in gastric diseases at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. These are the official statements.
However, an update of the evidence for Pasteurized Milk vs Raw Milk cast the issue in a very different light. There is now sufficient evidence via scientific research to prove that commercial pasteurization destroys beneficial micro-organisms in milk that are meant to be there and are very useful for maintaining health and a strong immune system, especially for reducing allergies or asthma in children. Research published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology in June 2006 has shown that raw milk consumption specifically reduced attacks of allergies.
Pasteurization also severely jeopardizes the calcium in milk, a critical mineral responsible for bone density, brain growth in children, and other vital functions in the body. Additionally, pasteurization completely destroys two principal enzymes, namely phosphatase (essential for calcium absorption — rendering any calcium remaining in the milk to be insufficiently absorbed in the body) and lipase, necessary for complete fat digestion. Insufficient fat digestion leads to fat build up, obesity, cholesterol issues and so on. Other enzymes, vitamins, and friendly bacteria inherently present in raw milk are also killed by commercial pasteurization. This results in making the milk extremely difficult for the body to properly digest and assimilate — a now unrecognizable and nutritionally bereft substance [commercially pasteurized milk].
Don't expect to hear it on a TV commercial but commercially packaged [pasteurized] milk is a leading cause of susceptibility to [winter] flu. I have seen it practically in India and other third world countries where people drink more raw milk, they are less susceptible to the flu. Whereas, in countries that mostly consume commercially packaged/pasteurized milk,people catch the flu that comes around every winter in almost epidemic proportions.
The primary benefits of the pasteurization of milk are for the most part intended for the dairy industry, the mega producers and packagers of commercial milk — giving the product a longer shelf life, thus eliminating the need for same day delivery to the consumer and enabling the corporate milk producers to ship their product far and wide. On the other hand, the benefits of pasteurization for the consumer are negligible and as we have pointed out, even detrimental to health.
What about homogenization? Dairy Farming Today, an organization that promotes information about dairy production, provided information about homogenizing in its article "Farm to Fridge" in December 2007. "Homogenization is a process that gives milk its rich, white color and smooth texture. Milk that has not been homogenized contains a layer of cream that rises to the top of a glass. Before the homogenization process was used, milk was shaken or mixed to achieve consistency in its look and taste. The homogenization process involves reducing the size of the fat globules into minuscule portions that are dispersed evenly throughout the milk. Homogenization usually is achieved by pumping milk through small openings under a very high pressure."
Douglas Goff, PhD, Professor of Daily Science and Technology Education at the University of Guelph, Canada, wrote on Homogenization of Milk and Milk Products  on the Dairy Science and Technology website: "Milk is an oil-in-water emulsion, with the fat globules dispersed in a continuous skim milk phase. If raw milk were left to stand, however, the fat would rise and form a cream layer. Homogenization is a mechanical treatment of the fat globules in milk brought about by passing milk under high pressure through a tiny orifice, which results in a decrease in the average diameter and an increase in number and surface area, of the fat globules. The net result, from a practical view, is a much reduced tendency for creaming of fat globules."
In effect what is being said here is that homogenization is basically for cosmetic appeal and maximizing profit margins.
If you are old enough to remember when the milkman made his morning house to house deliveries back in the old days [ before 1960] then you will remember seeing a big thick head of cream at the top of every glass bottle of milk. And before serving, your Mom or Grandmother would shake the bottle or pour off the cream to use in other kitchen preparations. Well, the milk we get today from most commercial dairies, even if not homogenized, would not yield a decent head of cream because the cream has been 'creamed' off in advance — and we got what's left, basically homogenized milk-water.
Ok, no harm done because we are all fat conscious these days and fully aware of the dangers of a high fat diet, the risk of heart attack, diabetes and a few more haunting life threatening ailments. So let the industry cream the milk and homogenize it first, its better for us anyway, right? Think again because that is not the fact. Homogenized milk turns out to be a leading cause for heart disease.
Heart disease is now well established as the leading cause of death especially in American males. Yet, less that eighty years ago it was a rare disease that didn’t rate among the six leading causes of death in the United States. Numerous causes for this have been suggested by the medical profession, including cigarettes, stress, a sedentary life style, and now cholesterol and saturated fats.
Cholesterol, that dreaded substance of our worst nightmares, is actually manufactured by the body and is vital to our well being. It is so vital that all tissues fabricate it and all cells contain it. The dysfunctional logic, which gave birth to the idea that cholesterol may be the causative agent of heart disease, is now falling apart under the weight of recent evidence, including that of the National Research Council.
In short, because cholesterol is so important physiologically, it is foolhardy to assume that the human body will self-destruct because of it. There are many people in many countries in the world who consume more cholesterol rich foods than Americans, but suffer far less heart disease. Fat and cholesterol consumption has not changed significantly in America in the last 150 years, and yet heart disease has skyrocketed. Why?
The real culprit is not cholesterol but the homogenization of milk. Milk [especially cows milk] is usually super nutritious. However, when it is tampered with by way of homogenization, it becomes a type of slow poison for the circulatory system. Milk fat contains a substance called Xanthine Oxidase (XO). This XO is usually not a problem in our system, but homogenization causes some of this XO to pass through the wall of the intestine into the circulatory system. There it creates havoc by attacking specific targets in the artery walls as well as heart tissue, causing lesions. The body responds to this attack by attempting to heal the damaged areas. Fatty tissue and cholesterol are laid over the wounds like bandaids and when these “body bandaids” build up over time they cause obstruction, stroke, heart attack and even death.
Homogenization of milk is an entirely superfluous procedure, producing only detrimental effects to health. This process simply breaks down fat globules via an extreme pressure method, so that the consumer does not have the burden of stirring in the cream that naturally rises to the top of the milk. Homogenization actually has no documented health advantages. However, homogenization has been linked to atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disfunction due to the miniature fat particles not being digested by the intestines but instead finding their way directly into the bloodstream causing the arteries to build up layers of unwanted cholesterol in an effort to protect themselves.
The enzyme XO is unwittingly being smuggled into the bloodstream by homogenized milk and is the cause of half of all heart attacks. Additionally, 30% of the heart muscle and artery walls are composed of a substance called plasma-logen. This plasma-logen is not usually found in the liver or small intestine for good reason, whereas XO serves a useful purpose in the liver and the small intestine, but destroys plasma-logen if it is present, the two cannot co-exist. In most cases plasma-logen is found missing from the heart muscles of the heart attack victim, but XO is found there in its place, when it shouldn't be.
XO in raw milk is digested, but in homogenized milk it is transported intact directly into the blood stream where it attacks arteries and the heart. When XO attacks the artery, an area is literally eaten away. The body, in its wisdom, tries to heal this area with cholesterol. As this buildup continues, the risk of heart attack is increased.
A heart attack is the product of years of arterial damage, not the result of some sudden overnight occurrence. Considerable arterial damage often occurs before the age of fifteen when the greatest volume of milk is consumed. Scarred arteries have even been found in infants after autopsy. Studies have revealed that 50% of the American children have lesions by the age of ten. The evidence also suggests that it is unwise for pregnant women to drink homogenized milk because of the potential damage to the unborn fetus. Heart attack was once rare even among the older people but now even young people are dying from it. Therefore, isn't it reasonable to question what is actually good for our health especially when studies have shown that Americans, who drink more homogenized [cold] milk than anyone, simultaneously have the greatest percentage of heart disease and death? Your life could actually depend on it.
The good news is that you have a choice of what you put on the table for your family and a choice of what they put into their stomaches. Choose wisely and live healthily. For thousands of years raw cow milk has been a crucial food staple and perennial medicine in most major world cultures. Cow domestication dates back over 8,000 years. In India's ancient medical system, the Ayurveda, milk is said to promote ojas, the subtle primordial energy of the body. Indeed, in India the cow is held in an esteemed position for being the giver of the miracle food, milk. When cow's milk is untreated by any mechanical process and consumed in its natural state only good things happen.
The nutritional profile of untreated, pure, raw milk is truly amazing. First of all it contains all eight essential amino acids which are the building blocks of protein. These amino acids are not synthesized by the body, they must be acquired through our food and are necessary for optimal health. Milk provides a duly proportionate amount of carbohydrates which are the body's main source of energy and the only source used by the brain. Lactose is the primary carbohydrate found in milk and it is digested with the aid of the naturally occurring lactobacilli bacterium. Digestion of lactose results in the formation of lactic acid which increases calcium, phosphorus, and iron absorption as well as making milk proteins more digestible.
Milk contains saturated fat, while widely thought to be undesirable, saturated fat is actually central to hormone production, energy storage, creation of cell membranes, and provides cushioning for our organs. CLA (conjugated linoleic acid) is abundantly present in milk and has a myriad of health benefits, including increased immunity, fat reduction while boosting muscle growth and heart disease and diabetes prevention. It is also a natural anti-inflammatory. Cholesterol, which is required for normal cell function, production of Vitamin D and hormones, as well as protecting human memory, is also found in milk. Present in varying degrees, colostrum, an element rich in immunoglobulins (proteins involved in stimulating the immune system), is associated with aiding many conditions including Alzheimer's disease, auto immune diseases, and asthma. Raw milk boasts an abundance of vitamins and minerals as well as enzymes, which are important for digestion and assimilation.
It is of utmost importance that people be aware of how food is produced and processed, so that they can make alimentary choices from a position of knowledge and understanding. The information presented here is simply intended to acquaint readers with the topic of raw milk as an alternative to pasteurized/ homogenized milk. We invite readers to do their own research on this subject (as it is quite extensive), talk to your local dairy farmers, and start dialogues within your own communities to gain access to raw milk.
The bottom line — raw milk is a completely safe food and if you want healthier kids, a stronger immune system, less 'headaches' and a longer fuller life, then put raw milk on the table for your family. Get the real deal, get raw milk. May your food choices engender health and well being for yourselves, humankind, the animals, and the Earth. ~ Om Shanti