Reason 1 Health Concerns about Dairy Products. :(

None of these reasons are going to be in any particular order of importance. Completely random depending on the particular topic I want to read about. hah~

Today I want to talk about MILK. And I just want to summarize some of the main points from this article. Please take a look at the article yourself if you want the specific references and studies.

“Many Americans still consume substantial amounts of dairy products—and government policies still promote them—despite scientific evidence that questions their health benefits and indicates their potential health risks.”
http://www.pcrm.org/health/diets/vegdiets/health-concerns-about-dairy-products

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a. Clinical research shows that dairy products have little or no benefit for bones.
b. Among the most physically active girls those who got the most calcium in their diets mostly from dairy products had more than double the risk of stress fractures.
(A stress fracture is a tiny crack to the bone caused by an overload of stress primarily from overuse. Muscles become fatigued and transfers the overload of shock to the bone.)

Instead you can decrease your risk of osteoporosis by:
-reducing calcium from dairy products
-increasing fruits and veggies
-exercising
-ensuring adequate calcium intake from plant foods such as kale, broccoli, and other leafy green vegetables and beans or calcium-fortified products such as breakfast cereals and beverages.

c. Dairy products contribute significant amounts of cholesterol and are the number one source of saturated fat in the diet. Diets high in fat and saturated fat can increase the risk of heart disease, among other serious health problems.

However a low-fat vegetarian diet that eliminates dairy products, in combination with exercise, smoking cessation, and stress management, can not only prevent heart disease, but may also reverse it. 

d. Prostate and breast cancers have been linked to consumption of dairy products, presumably related to increases in a compound called insulin-like growth factor (IGF-I). IGF-I is found in cow’s milk and has been shown to occur in increased levels in the blood of individuals consuming dairy products on a regular basis. Other nutrients that increase IGF-I are also found in cow’s milk.

Cutting fatty foods is priority No. 1 when you endeavor to lower your risk for breast cancer, and, as noted above, dairy products are the No. 1 source of saturated fat in the diet.

e. Milk contains contaminants including pesticides, drugs, hormones and growth factors produced within a cow’s body, synthetic hormones such as recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH) which is commonly used in dairy cows to increase the production of milk. Because treated cows are producing quantities of milk nature never intended, the end result can be mastitis, or inflammation of the mammary glands. Treatment of this condition requires the use of antibiotics, and antibiotic traces have occasionally been found in samples of milk and other dairy products. Pesticides, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and dioxins are other examples of contaminants found in milk. These toxins do not readily leave the body and can eventually build to harmful levels that may affect the immune and reproductive systems. The central nervous system can also be affected. Moreover, PCBs and dioxins have also been linked to cancer.

f.  A 2001 Finnish study of 3,000 infants with genetically increased risk for developing diabetes showed that early introduction of cow’s milk increased susceptibility to type 1 diabetes.

g. Colic is an additional concern with milk consumption for infants. Up to 28 percent of infants suffer from colic during the first month of life. Pediatricians learned long ago that cow’s milk was often the reason. We now know that breastfeeding mothers can have colicky babies if the mothers consume cow’s milk. The cow’s antibodies can pass through the mother’s bloodstream, into her breast milk, and to the baby.

h. Food allergies appear to be common results of cow’s milk consumption, particularly in children. Cow’s milk consumption has also been linked to chronic constipation in children. Researchers suggested that milk consumption resulted in perianal sores and severe pain on defecation, leading to constipation.

i. One of the most common dietary triggers of migraines and arthritis pain is dairy products, and even minor exposures to triggers can cause an attack. In adults, anywhere between 20 and 50 percent have a reduction or elimination of their migraine headaches when common trigger foods, such as dairy products, are avoided.

A study evaluating the influence of a four-week, low-fat vegan diet on Rheumatoid Arthritis patients showed significant changes in symptomology, such as improvement in ability to function, a decrease in both joint tenderness and joint swelling scores, improved severity of morning stiffness, and a decrease in pain.

j. Studies linking milk consumption and adolescent acne suggest that the association is caused by hormones and bioactive molecules present in cow’s milk.

k. Ounce for ounce, cola and skim milk have about the same number of calories. Whole milk has about 50 percent more calories, and 2 percent milk has approximately one-third more calories than cola. Reduced-fat milk is the seventh leading source of calories among Americans ages 2 to 18 years old according to the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

Milk and dairy products are not necessary in the diet and can, in fact, be harmful to health. It is best to consume a healthful diet of grains, fruits, vegetables, legumes, and fortified foods including cereals and juices. These nutrient-dense foods can help you meet your calcium, potassium, riboflavin, and vitamin D requirements with ease—and without health risks.

http://www.pcrm.org/health/diets/vegdiets/health-concerns-about-dairy-products

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