Milk WARNING: Homogenization poses a serious health risk
(NaturalHealth365) Childhood ear infections, digestive diseases, learning disorders and food allergies are just a few of the serious health concerns commonly associated with conventionally produced cow milk products. And, many natural health experts tend to agree, the modern process of high-heat pasteurization and homogenization is largely to blame for these chronic health issues.
Conventionally speaking, when raw cow milk is produced, it is then homogenized which is an emulsion of fat globules, water and various other solids. During this process, the original fat globule membrane is “dissolved” and a new one is formed that consists of a far more significant portion of casein. This dramatic and disproportionate increase is what research points to as the culprit behind the all too common cow milk allergy.
How does homogenization threaten human health?
It has been discussed for years now that the protein enzyme xanthine oxidase, found in cow milk, that would otherwise be broken down during the digestive process is absorbed fully intact due to the homogenizing process. During processing, when the larger fat globules are decreased to their smaller (‘new’) size, the tiny globules have been shown to surround xanthine oxidase – making it easy for it to pass into the bloodstream and wreak arterial havoc via ongoing inflammatory processes.
The now altered milk that results after homogenization is also more susceptible to damage through light and therefore oxidation further contributing to these growing health concerns. So, as you can see, cow milk might not “do a body good” after all.
A healthy alternative to conventionally produced cow dairy milk
Like many topics in mainstream healthcare circles, dairy products are one of the most hotly debated. Propagandized for its bone-building virtues, the calcium contained in cow dairy is exceptionally difficult to absorb given its high phosphorus content. Of course, corporate marketing from the conventional dairy industry would rather not talk about the digestibility issues of their final product.
But, organic goat milk – which does not undergo the homogenization process – is a much healthier alternative to cow milk. Unlike the many inflammatory processes associated with cow dairy consumption, such as Crohn’s disease and colitis, some research suggests that goat’s milk assists in reducing cellular inflammation.
Unlike cow dairy, the body may also appreciate better metabolic use of iron, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium, from goat’s milk, therefore helping to decrease bone demineralization and anemia.
And, let’s talk about superior fat content – while cow dairy only contains around 17% of fatty acids, goat’s milk is double at approximately 35%. In fact, this higher level of fat may actually help improve digestion by reducing overall inflammation.
If you or your child experiences lactose intolerance from cow milk consumption, you may want to consider switching to goat milk – which tends to be much easier to digest, without an allergic response. Of course, if possible, you could try to purchase raw (grass-fed) cow milk – but this is not realistically available to most people living in the United States.
Having said that, if an allergy to cow milk does exists, I suggest you get tested by a qualified healthcare provider – to rule out an allergy to goat milk – if you’re concerned about a reaction. It’s always better to be safe, than sorry.
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About the author: Christine M. Dionese L.Ac, MSTOM is an integrative health expert, medical journalist and food writer. She’s dedicated her career to helping others understand the science of happiness and its powerful effects on everyday human health. Christine practices, writes and speaks on environmental functional medicine, personalized medicine and epigenetics, food science and sustainable living.
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