Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Milk, It Does A Body Good!!

Did you know that milk is one of the only (if not the only) food you buy that does not have to put on the label what is in it? I read a book a few years ago (I am currently looking for my copy, so if you borrowed it, please return it) called "The Milk Book" by William Campbell Douglass II, MD. I believe the book is now called "The Raw Truth About Milk". I personally think that it should be read by every person. It exposes what goes on in the dairy industry that we can't see. It tells what happens to the milk, etc. Another good place for information on milk is Real Milk. When you have a healthy milk cow that is well taken care of, you have a gold mine. This also goes for goats, but since I don't have my goats anymore, I am talking about cow milk. =)

Health Benefits Of Raw Milk

    - 100% of milk protein remains available

    - 100% of minerals remain metabolically available

    - Rich in enzymes and contains all 22 essential amino acids

    - Rich in phosphate, essential for absorption of calcium

    - Rich source of B12, a vitamin rare in non-meat sources

    - 33% higher in Vitamin C than pasteurized milk

    - Contains enzyme-based pathogen killers (i.e., prevents growth of e-coli and listeria among others)

    - 2½ times higher in enzyme IgG, which inhibits rotavirus organisms that cause diarrhea in infants

What Happens to Pasteurized Milk

    - Heat treatment during pasteurization alters the configuration of its protein configuration, stripping it of most of its protein , nutrients, enzymes and antibodies

    - Pasteurization leads to a loss of up to 66% of Vitamins A, D, E and F

    - Vitamin C loss exceeds 50%

    - Calcium loss of 50% or more depending on pasteurization temperature (makes you wonder about why you pay more for Horizon Dairy’s “ultra-pasteurization” process)

    - Less than 10% of original enzymes remain after pasteurization

    - Pasteurized milk can actually PROMOTE allergies and autoimmune dysfunction

    - Pasteurized milk is completely stripped of phosphate, essential for absorption of calcium and development of a strong skeletal system

    - Essential fatty acids are reduced by pasteurization

    Now, there is a huge debate going on about raw milk. I first of all want to state my main point in their arguments. I should have the freedom of choice to buy raw milk for my family if I want to. "They" (the milk police) say they are trying to protect me from sickness and disease. Ok, if this is really true, why can I buy cigarettes if I choose. They have been proven to cause cancer and death. How about peanuts. I can buy peanut oil, peanut butter, plain peanuts, etc. Some people can die from eating a food processed in a factory that also processes peanuts. What about the whole big recall on lettuce that made people sick, or the huge beef recalls..... I can still buy lettuce and meat. It is not about my health. It is about money and power. The dairy lobby has both. Small farms don't have the same advantage to line pockets.

    I am blessed to have a milk cow. My family had been drinking raw milk for over 10 years. If any of you have seen my son, you know that it has not hurt him in the least. There were days where he drank almost a gallon himself. The picture below is 2 gallons of milk that I have. I am going to be taking the cream off the top for either butter or ice cream. If you click on the picture and make it big, you can see the layer of cream on the top. They did studies on the cream. They found that there is an "anti-stiffness factor" in raw cream and raw butter. It has actually helped people with arthritis. Now, I am not making any statements on here to tell anyone else what to do, or to proclaim myself an expert. I am simply sharing what my family has gleaned and experienced. (I hate having to always put that last sentence in, but I have to).

We have jersey cows. We are currently only milking one of them. Two calves nurse off of our other cow in milk. The third jersey is still just a heifer calf. Maybe next spring, she will be in milk. Our cows are grass fed. They do get hay in the winter and early spring. We have also been feeding Buttercup beet pulp because the drought has made the pasture and hay so bad. We are only milking her once a day right now. We are bucket feeding it to our other calves as well as using it ourselves. Oh, our dogs and cats get their fair share as well. If you have a milk cow, you can have your own dairy products (milk, cream, ice cream, cheese, yogurt, keifer, sour cream, etc.) plus you can raise other animals on it. When we have pigs, they get their fair share. Turkey poults in the brooder also receive milk.

We are also blessed that we were able to barter with someone for a milk machine. Our son, Joshua was our milker. He can milk a cow faster than anyone I have ever seen. However, he has VERY strong hands and the cow tends to dance in uncomfortableness. He is too busy to milk for us very often, plus he will be getting married and leaving in October of this year. Michael can milk the cow out by hand and does a fine job of it, but it takes awhile. I have never milked the cow out entirely by myself. I was the goat milker. The machine makes it fairly easy. This is an older system that we bought new tubing, etc. for. It is a surge belly milker. We put a strap called a surcingle over her back and it attaches to a metal bar under her belly. Then you put the handle of the bucket (made just for this) over the bar. The milk bucket is suspended from her belly. If she moves, the bucket goes with her. Moving is not much of a problem with Buttercup. She has been the best cow ever. Here is the bucket hanging under her belly.

The milk comes in the house and is strained into jars. The jars are immediately put in the refrigerator to cool down. The picture below is looking down at the cream on top of a jar of milk.

Buttercup's cream is very thick. When you buy heavy cream, it is nothing compared to this scrumptious pudding. =) Can you tell I am a wee bit prejudice about my cow? You can see the whiter milk down in the jar, from where I have taken most of the cream off.

Once you remove the cream, you can make butter with it, use it in ice cream, whip it for whipped cream on a dessert. It tastes wonderful. I have a whole post on the home dairy.

How many of you drink raw milk or have at least tried it? What do you think?


Tracy said...

My husband and son drank some raw milk at our friend's dairy farm last year. The both became infected with campylobacter. My husband who is 6", 200 pounds lost 30 pounds in a week. If her were frail, elderly, or a child it would have killed him. He is still having problems to this day, and is now at increased risk for Crohne's disease, colon cancer, etc. I'll take pasteurized milk!





Marci said...

Tracy has a good point in the fact that you need to make sure of the cow you are drinking the milk from. Also, you need to be sure that it is handled properly. I understand her wanting pasteurized milk. However, we know many, many people (I am talking a whole lot of people) that drink raw milk and have for years with no problems.

Inkpot said...

I have never drunk raw milk but I would like to. I read a book once which described drinking raw milk from their own cow and it sounded so delicious that I've wanted to drink it since then. You're post has reinforced that desire. Maybe one day I will. :) I love the photos of your animals. Best wishes.

LadySnow said...

That milk looks delicious!

Anonymous said...

I have had raw milk and loved it! I also plan to have my own home-grown milk as soon as I can. (Probably goat.)


Jthemilker said...

I grew up on raw milk, making our own butter and such and really miss it. I STILL shake the milk I get from the store... it's habitual. I hope that some day I too might have a little jersey or maybe a guernsey for our family... This post was very well written. You share so much that reminds me of home.

Bea Elliott said...

I was a vegetarian - thinking I was "doing my part" saving animals. Never realized the milk I was drinking fostered so much cruelty on factory farms.

I was so saddened to hear that the male calves are either sent to the slaughterhouse immediately - as "bob veal" or are confined in tiny pens for a few months to become "veal". Too horrible for me.... Have since gone Vegan.

I've learned a lot of things about milk and dairy products - healthwise..... All the calcium you think your ingesting is expelled by the body. Seems that calcium is absorbed west when consumed as plant based: 1.5 cups of brocolli = 8 oz serving of milk. There's more info at:

The best part about eliminating dairy from my diet? Lost 20 stubborn pounds of "baby fat" and I feel great.

If I "had" to drink milk I'd certainly choose a small humane family run farm rather than support the brutal (unhealthy) conditions in the "modern" dairy.

Marci said...

I love this subject because it really brings people out of the woodwork to comment. That way I know people are really reading my blog. =)

Bea also had some good points. I agree that the calcium from store bought milk (it is altered) does not allow you to assimilate and use the calcium. Raw milk does however. That is one of the best ways to get calcium.

Anonymous said...

Hi Marci, I grew up on raw milk and loved it. Of course, I thought everyone drank raw milk. I've considered buying a milk goat because there is only two of us home now. That's one of my future dreams.

Bea Elliott said...

It's a shame we all don't have a farm - it's probably the only way to insure getting hormone free.

I can only speak from experience... As mentioned I was a heavy milk/dairy consumer. Within a month of eliminating dairy products my hot flashes (I'm menopausal) diminished - They went from 6 - 8 times a day (for years) to 3 or 4 a week! That by itself convinced me.

I've done some research as to the drugs pumped into these factory farm critters - not only the dairy cows, but pigs & chickens as well..... I think I lost count at 60ish - drugs for everything you can think of.

Here's a shocker: 70% of all US pharmecuticals go to livestock!
Guess that's why it's called "Frankenfood".....

TnFullQuiver said...

Thanks for the information. Our family has used raw milk in the past. It took some time to get use to, but we liked it just fine. In fact we liked it enough that we purchased a jersey milk cow. She had her calf, but we just weren't set up to milk her. We had good intentions, but we let it slip through our fingers. We will be breeding her again soon. While we are waiting we will have time to work on a small milking area. Thanks for inspiring me once again in this area.
grace and peace,