Milk is a much maligned food. This is mainly due to ignorance and misunderstanding. Milk is the only complete food which can be had. This generic branding of milk under dairy (hence not good) is incorrect especially in relation to cow’s milk, which is one of the best things one can have for great health. Just because a very tiny percentage of the population may have an lactose intolerance or an allergy to milk or dairy products, we have tainted the entire food category.
Self appointed experts without any knowledge push vegan diets and other funny food habits just because something does not suit them. As a result they are doing a great disservice to the cause of health and nutrition, especially for children. Further, some of the digestion related issues attributed to milk are not caused by milk at all. They are caused due to the following reasons:
- Presence of unwanted chemicals and hormones in milk. Most of the milk we get today is highly processed. Just because some brand of milk is available in a fancy bottle or tetrapak at a very high cost, does not mean it is healthy. Even these high end milk brands give milk which causes problems.
- Having impure milk. This is milk which is obtained from cows who are fed on hormones, checmical laced produce or non-vegetarian leftovers mixed in fodder to increase production.
- Artificial milking of cows is another cause for milk which is not good. Treating cows as milk machines, overfeeding them and artificially stimulating to give more milk through hormones and machines causes stress to the cows. The quality of such milk is not great. Natural grazing on organic fodder is the right way to feed cows. Milking which is not artificially induced does not have stress hormones and chemicals.
- Adulterated milk. A lot of milk in large parts of the World, especially in India is adulterated. It has been found that almost eighty percent of milk in India is adulterated. Even good brands are not immune and at some stage in the supply chain, milk is contaminated.
- Milk which is pasteurised and homogeniezed. Both these processes combined (especially pasteurizaton), kill the nutrients in the milk. In addition, they also kill the good bacteria which actually prevent digestion related issues. So we kill all the good things in the milk through processing, including its nutrients and digestive and absorption qualities.
- Milk which is boiled at very high temperatures or boiled multiple times. This destroys the good digestive bacteria and other nutrients to be found in milk. This is a problem in India where even packaged, pasteurized and homogeniezed milk is boiled for long and multiple times during the day. Imagine boiling any food product for three to four times before you consume it. No wonder we do not get nutrients from them.
If we take care to have milk which does not have the above factors then you may realize that the ones who thought had lactose intolerance or some other problems will also not have a problem by drinking clean, healthy organic milk in small quantities.
Drinking cow’s milk in all ages, especially childhood, is very beneficial to build bone strength as well as remain healthy. The benefits of drinking milk regularly in childhood carry on in adulthood as well.
People who regularly have milk, curds (yogurt) and buttermilk, walk faster and have a better sense of balance. This reduces the risk of falls and injuries in later years. Bone density remains at optimal levels. Even if there is deterioration due to ageing, it is at a slower pace.
In addition, milk provides various vitamins, probiotics, protein and calcium. There are essential fatty acids required by the body which come from milk. If you are a vegetarian, then having some milk, yogurt and buttermilk everyday will ensure you do not require supplements, non-vegetarian food or other diet plans. Milk and milk products except processed cheese are essential for balanced nutrition especially if you are having a vegetarian diet plan.
Get your kids to have milk, curds (home made yogurt) and buttermilk to make them healthy. Supplement this with an appropriate balanced diet plan from wellzee for your children and watch them grow with joy.