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Debunking the Milk Myths.

First fact, DairyMilk is for a baby calf, NOT a human! (Cow’s milk is custom-designed for calves, weighing around 100 pounds at birth). 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 compared to that of human milk contains.

Second fact, milk depletes the calcium from your bones!

I can understand how milk was promoted as a high protein and calcium-rich drink, supporting overall health and in particular bone health. Milk DOES contain calcium. Many scientific studies have shown an assortment of detrimental health effects though, the most surprising is, not only do we barely absorb the calcium in cow’s milk, it actually increases calcium loss from the bones. Why? Milk acidifies the body’s pH which in turn triggers a biological reaction, calcium is an excellent acid buffer, calcium is stored in the bones, therefore its leached from the bone. So the very same calcium that our bones need to stay strong is utilized to neutralize the acidifying effect of milk. Statistics show that countries with the lowest consumption of dairy products also have the lowest fracture incidence in their population. The body is designed for survival, so it sacrifices bone density to protect the kidneys and urinary tract from high acidity.

Third fact, milk doesn’t protect you from fractures!

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. The countries with the highest rates of osteoporosis, are the ones where people drink the most milk. The connection between calcium consumption and bone health is actually very weak, and the connection between DAIRY/MILK consumption and bone health is almost nonexistent.

Fourth fact, 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.

So let’s separate Fact from Myth

YOU have always heard that you must drink milk to have healthy bones, right? And you need the protein in milk for growth and building muscle, right? Did you know the dairy industry spends millions of dollars every year on advertising to convince us of this?

Myth: You need dairy for strong bones.

Truth, your bone health depends on a balance of factors from your diet and lifestyle. Your body needs adequate calcium, protein, vitamin D, vitamin K, magnesium, potassium, and vitamin C to build bones. You don’t need dairy products for healthy bones and calcium. You need the right balance of nutrients for your bones. Plenty of plant sources give us plenty of calcium. And the same plants give us the other required nutrients like protein, vitamin K and C, potassium, and magnesium. You can get vitamin D from fortified nut milks, supplements and SUNSHINE. So the truth is, you don’t need dairy to protect your bones. Instead, you can simply eat a variety of the following: black beans, kidney beans, and navy beans. Bok choy, turnip, mustard, collard, kale. Soy: tofu, tempeh, edamame, fermented soy milk … Seeds: sesame, tahini, almonds, almond butter … Fruits: figs, raisins, calcium-fortified juices. Fortified nut milks: almond, coconut and hempseed

Myth: Dairy is a necessary source of protein!

You need enough protein to fuel growth based on your age and activity level. But protein deficiency is practically nonexistent in Western countries. Cow’s milk contains more protein than we need. In fact, it contains three times more protein than human breast milk.

Myth: Children need dairy!

Human breast milk, is the ideal food for infants. Human breast milk contains antibodies, easily absorbable fat, protein, and more than one hundred other compounds not found in cow’s milk. Childhood obesity rates are skyrocketing, plant-based diets are proving to be the best way to combat this epidemic. They are high in fiber, and vitamins and minerals, and low in saturated fat. Children eating plant-based diets tend to be leaner, especially in adolescence. Growing children need adequate amounts of carbohydrates, fat and protein. Your children will exceed their nutritional needs with a diet of eggs, fish, grains, legumes, vegetables, fruits, avocados, nuts and seeds, a plant-based diet. They will also develop tastes for healthier whole-foods.

Myth: Organic Milk is better!

While organic milk might not contain synthetic hormones like rBST, it is still chock-full of sex hormones. Dairy cows are "milked three hundred and five days per year. They are artificially inseminated so that they are kept pregnant and lactating almost all the time. That's why all milk contains a significant amount of the sex hormones estrogen and progesterone, the two pregnancy hormones, whether it's organic or not. Just like other dairy cows, organic cows are artificially inseminated and kept pregnant and lactating for the majority of their lives. While conditions are slightly better — they have to have access to grazing in the summer and exercise twice a week — organic cows suffer mastitis and premature death at just as high a rate. When their productivity decreases, they are also killed for meat.

Myth: Milk Is Good for You!

In reality, milk actually has far more health risks than benefits. As we saw above, studies show that milk appears to increase your risk of developing certain types of cancer. Three-quarters of us actually lack the enzyme to properly digest cow's milk and thus suffer digestively even if we're not lactose intolerant. Milk also contains allergens and is one of the most common food allergies.

Myth: Cows need to be milked anyway and don’t know any other way!!!

Female cows produce milk for the same reason human females do: to nurse their young. The sad truth is, whether the milk you drink is organic, local, or chock-full-of-rBST, it is the result of baby calves being torn from their mothers so that you can drink the milk instead. In order to produce enough milk to meet human demands, dairy cows are kept pregnant or lactating for the majority of their lives. It is anything but natural. They do not give milk because they are happy. They do it because we force them to. cows would naturally nurse their young for six to nine months, weaning their babies gradually. Heifer (female) cows stay with their mother for life, on modern farms, newborn female calves are immediately taken away, the mothers often cry in grief, some mothers will even break through fences and wander for kilometers in search of their babies. Cows are intelligent beings with feelings, who experience loss and pain, just like us.

Myth: Eating Local Dairy from The Farmers' Market Is Good for the Environment!

The dairy industry in any form is huge, cheese has the third-highest carbon footprint of any food, second only to lamb and beef. As most of us know, grazing cows emit a huge amount of methane, and there are far more dairy cows emitting the gas while producing milk for us than there are cows being slaughtered for meat. Like in my other article, if we all went plant based for three days a week, we could significantly reduce our carbon footprint, water consumption, deforestation, and more.

Do you need milk? The answer is yes — ONLY if you’re a calf ;)

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