The Health Benefits of Raw Milk

Since I first started practicing in 1980, I’ve often had patients with allergies and sinus congestion from supermarket milk and cheese, switch to raw milk products from local cows or goats.  With this one change, the chronic allergies, sinus and middle ear congestion/infections often clear up, general health improves dramatically and they don’t catch every cold that comes around anymore.  The patients who have tried going back to pasteurized, homogenized milk tend to have a return of allergies, congestion, skin problems, gastro-intestinal problems and/or arthritic symptoms.

From 1932 to 1942, Dr. Francis Pottenger (of the once famous Pottenger Sanatorium for tuberculosis, and the Pottenger Hospital for non-tubercular lung diseases) conducted what has become known as the Pottenger Cat Study:  All 4 groups of cats received raw meat as one-third of their diet.  The other two-thirds of the diet was either raw milk, or various heat-treated milks.  The raw milk/raw meat diet produced many generations of healthy cats.  Those fed pasteurized milk showed arthritic and other degenerative skeletal changes, rotting teeth, nerve problems and decreased reproductive capacity.

Pottenger found that pasteurized milk actually interferes with calcium metabolism, and that heating milk destroys fragile health-giving factors.  Before heating, milk is a living food rich in colloidal minerals and enzymes necessary for the absorption and utilization of the sugars, fats, proteins and minerals in milk.  Raw cream and butter has “X  Factor” that prevents joint stiffness.

Eight to ten thousand years ago, raw and fermented milk products began to replace animal bones as a major source of minerals in many cultures.  These raw dairy products were known to increase strength, fertility and general health.   Present-day cultures whose diets are high in cultured raw dairy products tend to be extremely healthy, long-lived people.  (The culturing of raw milk breaks down the lactose, and predigests the milk proteins.)

Raw milk that is still warm from the animal has traditionally been used through the centuries for various wasting diseases.  Even in the early days of the Mayo Foundation, Dr. J. R. Crewe used a raw milk diet to cure diabetes, obesity, eczema, psoriasis, gastritis, allergies, respiratory diseases, arthritis, diseases of the heart and kidneys, high blood pressure, edema, swollen prostates, urinary tract infections and anemia (including pernicious anemia).

Pasteurizing milk kills off all bacteria, including the health-giving lactobacilli.  This allows milk to putrefy with bad bacteria over time, rather than sour or ferment from good lactobacilli.  Pasteurization also destroys vitamins, especially C, B6 and B12, and denatures fragile milk proteins.  It destroys 20% of the iodine, and makes insoluble the major part of the calcium content.

Milk fat, such as cream and butter, is necessary to absorb the calcium in milk.   Supermarket milk is homogenized so that the cream does not rise to the top.  The homogenization breaks up the fat globules unnaturally, releasing xanthine oxidase, known to cause lesions in our arteries!  For those who only have access to the pasteurized supermarket milk, it’s best to buy organic cream and organic non-fat milk (QFC and Sunnyfarms), and mix them together yourself, to avoid homogenization.

The best raw milk is from Jersey or Guernsey cows that eat mainly green grass, not soy meal or other commercial feeds.  One can purchase raw, organic cheeses from health food stores, and even most supermarkets now.  Dungeness Creamery, a certified Grade A dairy in Sequim, is presently going through the process of becoming a certified raw milk dairy.  For those interested in purchasing raw milk in the near future, call Jeff and Debbie Brown at Dungeness Creamery: 360-683-0716.

References:

Nourishing Traditions, Sally Fallon and Mary Enig, PhD, 2001 edition.

The Maker’s Diet, Jordan Rubin, NMD, PhD, 2004.

www.mercola.com

www.realmilk.com