From the time of birth to about one year of age almost every child that enters this world is given milk. Breast milk is essential nutrition for a baby straight from his or her own mother. But why after infancy do we continue to consume dairy from domesticated animals other than our own mothers? From an evolutionary standpoint humans centuries ago did not consume dairy from any other animals. Our ancestors did not domesticate cattle, inject them with hormones, milk them day in and day out, and then sell the milk in the village or bring it home to their families. Milk was consumed naturally from the mother in infancy and that was it.
So why has milk become such a common product? When it comes to dairy, the risks definitely outweigh the benefits. Close to 75% of the world’s population suffers from lactose intolerance and stomach problems related to dairy. Respected medical consultant, New York Times best-selling author, and leader in the field of functional medicine, Mark Hyman, M.D. advises his patients to give up dairy all together. Hyman’s recent video blog, “Dairy: 6 Reasons You Should Avoid It at All Costs or Why Following the USDA Food Pyramid Guidelines is Bad for Your Health” confirms his belief that milk does not actually strengthen the bones or prevent the risk of osteoporosis. In fact it aggravates the bowels, is linked to prostate cancer, and contains so much saturated fat that it may even increase the risk of heart disease. He argues that the pesticides, hormones and antibiotics in the average gallon of milk are contributing to the harmful effects dairy has on the body.
Dr. Hyman instead suggests getting calcium from dark green leafy vegetables and salmon, rather than milk. He recommends a diet full of whole plant foods, fruits, vegetables, nuts, beans, seeds, whole grains and lean fish. And if you looking for those strong, healthy bones, try consuming vitamin D and leave the milk to the babies!
Best Options for Diary/Milk Replacement:
- So Delicious brand Coconut Milk (Plain)
- Blue Diamond brand Almond Milk (Unsweetened Vanilla)
- Meyenberg Powdered Goat Milk (What my Grandmother gave me!)
Yours In Health,
Stella Metsovas B.S., CCN