People have long believed that cow’s milk is essential in the human diet after decades of the dairy industry promoting it as a health product, essential for protein, calcium and general health. So how have we got to this place, a place where a human mother sincerely believes that baby calves’ growth milk is as good as, if not better for their baby than their own milk and what’s more, that older children and people of all ages should continue to consume this baby calves’ growth milk, for their entire lives, in order to be healthy? I mean change it around, if we were feeding a baby cow calf human milk and expecting them to grow well, would we have high hopes? So why do we have no reservations about it the other way round? Nowhere else in nature do animals drink the milk from another species. Elephants don’t raise their calf on giraffes milk and baby tigers don’t drink gorilla’s milk. In fact if I said ‘I’m planning on raising my new-born baby on elephant’s milk’ I would sound like I had lost my mind and yet what I did was so similar. I raised my baby on cow’s milk, their baby calves growth food, a specific growth food to grow a 50lb calf to a 800lb cow in eight months.
Drinking cows milk for calcium is like smoking for oxygen
Yes humans need calcium but as Doctor Milton Mills explains “drinking cows milk for calcium is like smoking for oxygen”. Dairy does have calcium but what comes with it are a host of things that are toxic for the human body. There are many other food sources that give us calcium, not even cows themselves drink it past eight months and where do they get their calcium- from eating green things, yet we have been convinced that we need milk- baby calves growth milk, into adulthood. If it was so necessary what on Earth did humans do before domesticating cows? How about the people in large parts of the world that don’t consume dairy and are lactose intolerant, how do they survive? In fact, we are finding out that the people who consume the least dairy actually survive so much better at least when it comes to illnesses such as breast, ovarian and prostate cancers, heart disease, many auto immune conditions, diabetes type 1 and 2, Alzheimer’s, osteoporosis.
Dairy’s Days are Numbered
For decades dairy has had its own special place in government’s dietary food guides across the Western world with some recommending to drink at least three glasses of cows milk per day. Through food pyramids and dietary wheels dairy has been prominent in our understanding and teaching of a healthy balanced diet, the ‘Holy Grail’, recently however Canada has chosen not to include dairy at all in its official dietary guidelines as for the first time dairy lobbyist were not involved in the decision making process and the decisions were led by the science. Dr David Jenkins, the Canada research chair in nutrition and metabolism and a professor at the University of Toronto says “I think the guide is moving in a plant-based direction, which will ruffle some feathers, but I think that’s the direction it needs to go”. We have erroneously placed “cow’s milk next to mother’s milk” in terms of its importance for human health, dairy is no longer recommended by the government health board and the food wheel suggests other ways to get the nutrients required for a balanced diet. Most recently the Scottish government is adding plant-based alternatives to milk to its free nursery milk scheme, following The Vegan Society’s campaign. Supermarket shelves are filled with plant-based milks and baristas in coffee shops are making more plant based milk cappuccinos by the day. The public are changing their dietary choices, no longer so convinced that cow’s milk plays a crucial part in their health and this coupled with the Covid-19 zoonotic pandemic and climate emergency means there has never been a better time to explore healthier and more compassionate options.’
Cheese is highly condensed cow’s baby’s growth fluid. Very high in saturated fat, that raises cholesterol levels and increases the risk of heart disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s. Cheese has high salt content which contributes to high blood pressure. But there is another reason why cheese is concerning for human health.
Casein is the main protein found in cow’s milk and is heavily concentrated in cheese. Casein is also a potent carcinogen that is more relevant to turning on cancer than any other carcinogen identified so far according to Dr. Colin Campbell, author of the China Study. He found in a study with mice that he could literally turn on and off cancer cell growth just by adjusting the levels of Casein given to them from 5% to 20% and back and forth.
Our work showed the Casein is the most relevant cancer promoter ever discovered
Addictive or Just Moreish?
What is really scary is that Casein has addictive like properties and so despite the health risks we keep coming back for more. Casein, a dairy protein releases casomorphins, which are plant compounds that trigger dopamine production in your brain. In other words, dairy protein has opiate molecules built right into it. As Neal Barnard explains this is a reason for Opiates in dairy products? What the heck are they doing there, you might ask. Well, imagine if a calf did not want to nurse. Or if a human baby was not interested in nursing. They would not do very well. So, along with protein, fat, sugar, and a sprinkling of hormones, milk contains opiates that reward the baby for nursing.
There is a very clear correlation between the Western diet’s high cheese consumption and the rise of diseases such as certain cancers, heart disease and diabetes. Dr Neal Barnard, M.D., F.A.C.C, writes in his book, The Cheese Trap: “Sky-high levels of cholesterol and saturated fat in dairy products, have been proven to increase all cardiovascular problems, yet tens of millions of government dollars are spent each year subsidising marketing and promotion of the cheesiest meals at fast-food restaurants.”
Lactose intolerant means someone is unable to digest the lactose sugar found in dairy. Whilst around 65% of the worlds’ population have this levels vary greatly with ethnicity. People in Northern Europe being 85% lactase persistent and many people in Africa and Asia being 90% lactose intolerant. Symptoms include bloating, cramping and diarrhoea. Many people are not aware that the symptoms they experience are a result of their dairy consumption. There is nothing wrong with being lactose intolerant as consuming milk is not supposed to continue into adulthood.
Dairy consumption has been positively linked to hormonal cancers such as ovarian, breast and prostate cancers. Many people have the misconception that these cancers are largely hereditary but in fact only 5-10% of diagnosed cases are hereditary and if you have the cancer gene it does not have to mutate and more healthy cells can suppress the cancer cell growth. A healthy diet is more important than anything to those at high genetic risk.
Breast cancer in women is a hormone responsive cancer and most evidence suggests that oestrogen levels are a critical determinant of breast cancer. As dairy cows are re-impregnated 6-8 weeks after giving birth and have been genetically modified to produce milk even though they are pregnant in order to be milked 10 months of the year to maximise profit, most of the milk we drink is from pregnant cows, so dairy is a product with hugely elevated levels of sex hormones like oestrogen and progesterone and its these very high hormone levels in pregnant cows that may explain the rise in these cancers. Milk from non-pregnant cows has far fewer hormones than pregnant cows. A recent study carried out by researchers at Loma Linda university health found that those women drinking 1 cup of cows milk a day increased their risk of breast cancer by 50% and 2-3 cups was increased risk as much as 80%.
Prostate Cancer is one of the most common cancers among men and high intakes of dairy products have been linked to increase risk of prostate cancer. Studies have shown according to American Journal of Clinical Nutrition that men drinking more than one glass a day of whole milk had double the risk of fatal prostate cancer and those men following a vegan diet had a 35% reduced chance of prostate cancer risk.
Cow’s milk protein increases IGF-1 levels, a known risk factor for prostate cancer. It has also been suggested that regular exposure to oestrogen in milk from pregnant cows may explain the increased risk of prostate cancer in western societies.
Bone Health and the Calcium Myth
We need to remember that some of the strongest animals in the world are herbivores and certainly don’t get their calcium from dairy! Calcium is a mineral found in the soil and is absorbed into the roots of plants, and they get it from eating calcium rich plants. So contrary to popular belief that calcium comes from dairy the real source of calcium is from the Earth and this is why a whole food plant based diets has an abundance of calcium.
The human body needs calcium for bone and teeth health and a number of other important functions however contrary to popular belief dairy products are not the only way to get calcium into our bodies and in fact may not be the best way at all. Some foods can actually deplete calcium from our bodies, foods high in animal proteins (including dairy) and salt are two of the main culprits for calcium loss. Dairy is not only very high in saturated fat, but studies have shown no evidence that diets high in dairy reduce bone fractures and in fact ironically countries with the highest dairy intake such as America and Scandinavian countries actually have the highest rates of osteoporosis and those with the lowest such as China and Japan have the lowest.
Obtaining calcium from dairy products given the incurred loss seems like an uphill battle and given that dairy products are high in saturated fat, oestrogens, casein and inflammatory, plant based sources of calcium such as leafy green vegetables where calcium is easily absorbed without loss and nutrient dense, seem like a much healthier way to go about our diets.
There is significant evidence to suggest that dairy significantly increase if not causes acne. As acne rates have increased so too has the consumption of dairy especially in western diets. Researchers are yet clear whether it is the hormones added to cows milk or the hormones already in the cows milk that aggravate the acne. Body builders who consume high amounts of whey protein have been prone to acne.
High dairy consumption has been linked to a number of autoimmune diseases like Hashimoto Thyroiditis, psoriasis, arthritis, eczema, diabetes 1, crones to name but a few. There is growing evidence to link the role western diets play in the rise of autoimmune diseases.
Early exposure to cow’s milk proteins has been linked to type 1 diabetes. It is thought that certain proteins found in cow’s milk may trigger an autoimmune reaction whereby our own immune cells attack these foreign dairy proteins, inadvertently destroying our insulin-producing pancreatic cells, thus leading to diabetes.
I found out that eggs and dairy were making me ill, and once I gave them up I felt like a new person almost overnight
Cheese is one of the single best foods for compromising health.
I know of nothing else in medicine that can come close to what a plant-based diet can do
Frequent consumption (more than once a day) of soy milk was associated with 70 per cent reduction of the risk of prostate cancer
Osteoporotic bone fracture rates are highest in countries that consume the most dairy, calcium, and animal protein. Most studies of fracture risk provide little or no evidence that milk or other dairy products benefit bone.
When creating cow milk, Mother Nature was thinking about not only the nutritional needs but also the digestive capabilities of a calf, not those of a human being.
My son up until the age of two was fed mainly on cows’ milk, he was sick all the time. Hospital and antibiotics four times, a mucus cough that lasted over a year, repeated tonsillitis, ear infections, chronic snoring and constipation. Each time I went to my GP I was told that he will be fine and just make sure he was drinking his milk (cows’ milk). Since having a vegan diet for over a year he has thrived, he has not needed a doctor or any medicine and the cough and snoring completely went as has the constipation. We went vegan for the animals and were not expecting all the health benefits that came with it.
I am somewhat traumatised that the cows’ milk I was feeding him was making him sick and when he was sick, I would feed him with more cows’ milk. I was making him sick. I had heard advice that children under one should not be exposed to cows’ milk, but I thought this was just over protective nonsense and not to be taken seriously. On the day he was born I even allowed the nurses to feed him cows’ milk formula as my breast milk colostrum was not enough to satisfy his hunger.
THE DAY MY SON WAS BORN I LITERALLY PUT HIM ON THE UDDER OF A COW.
Mother to Mother
I started this project to help mother dairy cows and to raise awareness of their unthinkable lives and the relentless suffering they endure. However, the more I delve into this the more layers of harm I discover. Even if dairy was somehow cruelty free I would not consume it even in small proportions, or nourish my child with it. I am now fully aware that the production process is not the only dark side to dairy. Dairy mercilessly wreaks havoc on human health, and it makes perfect sense- why would another species maternal growth milk be suited to us?
We need to stop spending our time searching for the cure to these diseases and start looking at what is the cause of these diseases
— Dr. Milton Mills