Are Dairy Products Good For Me?

milkDairy products are one of the most highly allergenic foods in the grocery store and tolerated by very few people. Now a result of commercial farming and modern food processing, dairy products are an entirely different product today from what our grandmother’s cow used to provide.  Modern diets for cows, combined with drugs and lack of exercise, followed by the processing methods of pasteurization, homogenization and fortification convert what could be a healthy food into an artificial food substance. Our bodies no longer recognize dairy as a friendly food source and cannot efficiently digest, absorb and assimilate it which results in multiple digestive problems. As well, the intestines, pancreas and liver commonly reject dairy products as a foreign invader and the rejection process creates varying degrees of inflammation anywhere in the body.

It is no wonder then that common symptoms of dairy intolerance include mucus congestion, asthma, ear infections, skin problems, joint pain, mood swings (especially children), fatigue, and hormonal problems, including PMS and menopause.  Dairy is also commonly associated with gastrointestinal problems such as bloating, constipation, irritable bowel, colitis, gas and/or diarrhea.  Dairy products include milk, cheese, sour cream, ice cream and yoghurt, although small amounts of butter are usually tolerated since it contains very little allergy-causing milk sugar or protein. Don’t try to bypass a dairy intolerance by drinking milk that has digestive enzymes in it to break down lactose (milk sugar). This has no effect on milk protein (casein) digestion, does not improve intolerance nor does it lessen most negative reactions.

You are what you eat.  Any animal that lives in unhealthy conditions or in cruel circumstances will be passing their negative energy into you if you consume them.  Dairy cows in commercial operations are rarely exposed to daylight and are discouraged from exercise.  They are kept lactating through various forms of manipulation, including artificial insemination and hormone supplements.  They never see the calves they give birth to.  They stand on concrete and are confined in crowded spaces.  Their weakened legs are unable to hold them, they frequently fall and require mechanical means (a tractor) to get them standing again. In a natural environment a cow can live to about 20 years, an industrial dairy cow lives just 5 or 6 years. The raw milk in a tanker truck travels long distances (often 500 km or more) to be processed and packaged then travels long distances again to come back to your local store. To be clear, the processing of milk products, i.e. pasteurization and homogenization, is not done to improve your health; it is done to increase the shelf life of the final product.

What about calcium? A balanced diet does not require dairy products for calcium intake.  Calcium is readily available from many other foods that are low fat, non-acidic, unprocessed and uncontaminated:  green leafy vegetables, legumes (beans), sesame seeds, flax seeds, organic soy products, kelp, salmon, broccoli, almonds, dried fruit and oranges.  Bear in mind though that many children often don’t or won’t eat a variety of different foods.  It may be necessary therefore to supplement them with extra calcium.

And be sure to avoid calcium antagonists:  those substances that deplete calcium levels and encourage bone loss.  If you eat lots of beef, drink caffeine (coffee, tea, coca cola, chocolate) or phosphorus-containing soda drinks such as pop you will need to increase your calcium intake.

We have been misguided into believing that milk is good for us through powerful associations supporting the industry. Learn where your food comes from, nourish yourself with life-giving foods and insist on having all animals raised in a healthy and happy environment.