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The following story is a true story.
I pulled up to the dirty, rusty, old van parked all by itself in a random lot. I looked to make sure there were no 5-0 around. Things were quiet, so I approached and asked, “Are you Sam?” He smiled warmly and confirmed that he was. I was immediately put at ease.
I asked him all of the questions I knew to ask through my research. Sam assured me that all of his animals are 100% grass-fed (they have NEVER seen grain of any kind), there has never been incidence of leukemia on his farm, he is 3/4 done testing his cows and so far they are all A2, he does testing of his facilities every week, and he even invited me to come for a visit at his farm (which I’ll be doing very soon).
15 minutes later I was driving home with two half gallon Mason jars in my ice-packed cooler, filled with raw milky goodness. Finally…my family now has a consistent, reliable, trustworthy, fresh, and clean source for grass-fed raw milk. I am ecstatic that this will now be an every Friday morning ritual, with my son in tow.
Why Do I Go This Far? I Mean, We’re Criminals!
Do you live in a place where raw milk is legal? If so, I am incredibly very happy for you. Unfortunately for my family and all of the families that live in my state, raw milk is illegal to buy and sell. But, why do I care so much about drinking raw milk, anyway?
Clean raw milk from pastured cows is a complete and properly balanced food. You could live on it exclusively if you had to. Indeed, published accounts exist of people who have done just that.1
But wait, you heard that raw milk is dangerous, right???
I (along with many others) believe that drinking pasteurized and homogenized milk actually hinders your health. Check out these stats about what happens to milk when it is pasteurized and homogenized…
Calcium – pasteurization makes most of the calcium insoluble, meaning your body cannot absorb it. Raw milk contains calcium in a form your body can actually absorb.2
Fat – …homogenization damages the fat cells in the milk, bursting them and causing our body to not recognize what it is2
Vitamin C – decreases by about 50%2
Vitamin B’s – decreases by 38%2
Iodine – destroys 20% of it2
So, why do people say that raw milk is dangerous?
Great question! Your grandparents and great-grandparents and their grandparents (etc.) drank raw milk for years and years and YEARS. The trouble with raw milk started with the Industrial Revolution. In the USA our society went from being mainly farm-based to factory-based. Many factory-based industries back then were fueled by water power, so you would find these industries lining shores of rivers.
What also happened around the Industrial Revolution? A massive increase in production of alcohol, in particular…whiskey. Farmers found a cheap way to feed their cows (now mostly contained in very small pens next to distilleries): swill, or the leftover nastiness from liquor production. THIS was fed to cows. How good do you think that was good for the milk, which humans were drinking? People were getting sick (and dying) in massive numbers. The infant mortality rate in NYC went above 20%3.
A few people (doctors and farmers) got together an decided that a government commission should be formed to oversee the quality of milk and “certify” milk. It took a few years, but they had worked with quite a few farmers to accomplish this certification so raw milk was safe again. However, milk that was certified was so expensive that very few could afford to purchase it.
A philanthropist from NY (Nathan Straus) had a different idea. He thought that only milk which had been pasteurized (heated to extreme temperatures) was safe. He had a lot of money (which he made through investments in Macy’s Department Store), so he threw his money into “mik depots” to help people be able to afford pasteurized milk.
Pasteurized and certified milks managed to peacefully co-exist for a time, but by the mid-1940’s, the truce had become decidedly uneasy. In 1944. a concerted media smear campaign was launched with a series of completely bogus magazine articles designed to spark fear at the very thought of consuming raw milk.3
Sooooo…corporate dollars have gotten us to the point we are at today. Some states can sell raw milk legally, but many cannot. It has only been fairly recently when people (probably like y0u and me) started fighting back against the packaged “food” industries and against big companies like Monsanto. We want to take back our food supply…and I WANT TO TAKE BACK THE RAW MILK SUPPLY!
Need To Know More?
There are a plethora of excellent articles available on the internet to read, and I encourage you to do so. Read all that you can and made decisions that are the best for YOU and your FAMILY!
So, why do I choose to be a “criminal?” My family believes in clean raw milk and all of the goodness it holds inside.
I cannot imagine going back to…
- High heat pasteurization– During this process MANY inherently excellent qualities in milk are lost; all of us…especially my allergy-prone family…really needs to have all of the great living bacteria available in raw milk so we can have healthier guts
- Homogenization– When milk is homogenized (which basically means that the fat molecules of milk are crushed into smaller pieces) you lose the cream that rises to the top in raw milk. Homogenization damages milk fat molecules and actually oxidizes them. Oxidized fats have been shown to contribute to heart disease, hypertension, and hyperlipidemia.
- Milk from non-grass-fed cows– Milk from grass-fed animals is rich in a fatty compound that is called Conjugated Linoleic Acid, or CLA. CLA has been shown to inhibit cancer, with multiple clinical trials showing that it actually reduces the size of tumors in rats.
- Milk from cows pumped full of antibiotics and other pesticides– This is a no brainer, really.
- Milk that makes our lactose semi-intolerant family worse- It’s true. Many, many, many people who are lactose-intolerant or allergic CAN drink raw milk and DO get better. Allergies in general get better, eczema gets better, asthma can actually be cured, and health overall improves.45
Read more for yourself from the sources cited above (in superscript throughout this post) and from the sources listed below…
Here are a few excellent books to read…
What do YOU think about raw milk?
Do you drink it? Would you drink it?
Until next time…
Jess, aka Scratch Mommy
*My farmer’s name has been changed to protect my awesome farmer’s identity.
Side note– Sam and I were chatting and somehow started talking about random parts of the cow. He sent me home with a free cow heart…he said that he was happy to give it to me as a gift! Now, what to do with it. Have any ideas, readers??