I have never been a big fan of cow’s milk. It always tasted funny to me. I would drink it on occasion but it has never been a common beverage choice of mine. Since I began my health research several years ago I began reading about bovine growth hormones in milk and dairy products, animals being treated and killed inhumanely and cows being given GMO feed. Organic milk was a must if dairy milk was to be drinking but myself and my children mostly consumed non-dairy milks: Hemp Milk, Almond Milk, Coconut Milk, (NEVER Soy!)
As I have learned so much about how our food effects our bodies and our health I have been moving my family towards eating more whole, raw, unprocessed foods. Foods minimally processed is the best option and I can see it in our behavior, health and livelihood. Most recently I have began to learn about the benefits of drinking Raw milk. I never really had a desire to run out and buy it because I was convinced there couldn’t be much difference. Boy was I wrong! My cousin brought us some and the kids and I tried it and we were immediately hooked! In San Diego raw milk is not cheap. It costs almost $16 a gallon which is pretty crazy. Doesn’t matter, I make room for it in the budget because I know in the long run it’s a good investment. Many people are afraid of that raw milk is unsafe, but actually a small number of people get sick from raw milk. Compared to illness from consuming other food items the risk from drinking raw milk is relatively low. I feel the choice to drink raw milk is a personal decision. This post will share with you 5 reasons why my family drinks raw milk and share with you some info I found while doing my own personal research.
The Truth About Processed Milk
When purchasing processed milk, it is important to get organic milk, preferably from grass-fed cows. Most commercial raised dairy cattle are given high protein, soy-based feeds in substitution for natural grass feeding. The reason is that the alternate feed and Bovine Growth Hormone (BGH) create abnormally large pituitary glands so that they produce 3 times more milk than regular grass-fed cows. The cows are generally unhealthy and depend on antibiotics to keep them well. Now, we’ve all heard the old adage “You are what you eat!” Unhealthy cows produce unhealthy milk. The milk is then pasteurized which strips all the valuable enzymes making it harder to digest. The butterfat is then homogenized or removed all together which removes a large number of essential vitamins such as Vitamin A & D. Processed milk then has synthetic Vitamin D, which can be toxic to the liver, added back to replace the natural D that was removed.
Cow’s milk is the number one food allergy in the country. It has been documented as a cause in skin rashes, acne, and recurrent ear infections. This didn’t use to be the case and for hundreds of years. Before milk processing became commonplace, milk was used to build strong, healthy bodies and very few people had adverse reactions from it. Raw milk from pasture fed cows is living food containing beneficial bacteria, enzymes and nutrients. These essentials are destroyed when milk is heated and processed removing the minerals and enzymes that are needed to be absorbed and digested correctly. Processed food does not support life or a well-functioning body and should be avoided.
1. Raw milk contains more nutrients
Raw milk contains a large number of vitamins, nutrients and enzymes that are non-existent in processed milk. The pure unprocessed form is higher in:
- Vitamins A, B6, B12, C and D.
It is full of all those rich enzymes that are destroyed during the pasteurization process and contains healthy life bacteria, known as probiotics.
2. Raw milk Tastes Better to us
One of the main reasons I never really liked milk was because I guess most milk that I drank growing up was not whole milk. I never knew it, but apparently everyone was buying low-fat or non-fat milk because it was supposedly healthier. To me it tasted like strange and had like a weird light blueish tinge to it. Like milky water. Raw milk tastes much differently. When I took my first sip I immediately thought to myself “OMG THIS is what milk should taste like!” It tasted so pure, whole and just plain yummy. My kids and I were drinking it every day, and were just loving it!
3. Raw milk is more Easily Digested by the Body
My husband is lactose intolerant and he can drink raw milk without any issues at all. As mentioned earlier, raw and unprocessed milk can be consumed by even those with dairy allergies because it still contains the enzymes and minerals that are needed in order to be digested.
4. Raw Milk is Better for Everyone Involved
As mentioned earlier, raw milk dairy cows often lead much healthier lifestyles than cows who are commercially milked. This means happier cows living and being treated humanely are producing better milk. This is a better environment for the animals as well as the farmers while also providing a better product to consumers. Everyone benefits!
5. Raw Milk Doesn’t Spoil
Normal processed milk goes bad if left out. It will spoil with a rancid smell and must be discarded. Raw milk does not go bad. If left out on the counter overnight the raw milk still has many uses. Jill over at The Prairie Homestead has a great post on 20 Ways To Use Sour Raw Milk. I didn’t realize there were uses for old raw milk so I have been rationing the amount that I buy so that the pricey beverage does not go to waste. Now that I know that it can’t and that there are lots of other ways to use it I will be buying it in larger amounts Baking, Cooking, gardening and even health and beauty products.
Do you drink raw milk? Have you been wanting to try it but are hesitant? I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences!