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Milk � Its Impact on Health, Cruelty, and Pollution


 

 

The Times of India

Tuesday 11 April 2000

By Pritish Nandy

(Edited and formatted for American readers)

Ayurveda actually lists milk as one of the �five white poisons�. She has stirred a hornet's nest with her campaign against milk. Even hardcore veggies have attacked Menaka Gandhi and religious leaders have openly come out to contradict her. Curiously, on her side now is global research and modern science, of which she has been a long-term critic. They are the ones who are defending her now.

You have come out very strongly against milk. Why are you so hostile to it?

There are three reasons.

    People�s health is compromised by milk

    Cruelty to cows and

    Pollutants in milk

Health Issues:

Would you like to explain why you think milk is unhealthy?

There is this belief that milk is a complete food and an important source of protein, iron and calcium.

Milk has no iron, however it also blocks its absorption.

The ability of the body to absorb calcium from milk is barely 32%. Whereas the body can absorb, 65% from cabbage and 69% from cauliflower.

Milk has less protein than most vegetables. Even if we assume it contains more protein, it would be useless for human beings. Because human beings require only 4 to 5 percent of their daily calorie intake in proteins and the daily consumption of Indian bread (Chapattis) and potatoes would give more protein than the requirements. So milk is not the best food in the world as it has been touted for generations?

Milk is very difficult to digest particularly for Asian and African. Why do I not eat plastic? The reason is; I have no enzyme to digest it. We do not have lactose in our body and so we cannot digest lactose. If we cannot digest milk, how do we get any of its ingredients?

Apart from this, milk has something called the IGF-1. All cancer studies show that when IGF-1 rises in the body one gets cancer. All the IGF-1 in milk stays in the body, making you prone to cancer. It is also a very strong cause of asthma decease. In fact, doctors recommend asthma patients to avoid milk and milk products.

The problem with doctors in India is that they learn no nutrition in medical colleges. So they have a limited knowledge of food. Their knowledge of nutrition comes from the same source as yours and mine: Grandmothers and teachers. Add to this the confusion caused by our local religious leaders, particularly the ones who espouse vegetarianism.

What is specifically wrong in milk? What is specifically harmful?

The calcium contained in milk actually becomes a health hazard as undigested portions of it are deposited in the urinary system and become kidney stones. Another condition that milk aggravates rather than alleviates is osteoporosis or bone loss. Studies have shown that it is excess protein rather than lack of calcium that causes osteoporosis. So the more milk you drink, the more you are prone to osteoporosis. Countries like Sweden that have the highest milk consumption also have the highest incidence of osteoporosis.

Another misconception is that milk helps ulcers. Ulcers are caused by the corrosion of the stomach lining. When you drink milk it gives you immediate pain relief. But that is only temporary. Milk actually causes acidity and further destroys the stomach lining.

Also, ulcer patients who are treated with dairy products are found to be 2 to 6 times more prone to heart attacks. This seems only logical because milk is designed to be the food on which a calf increases its body weight 4 times over in one month! It is so naturally high in fat that it leads to obesity, the cause of all modern disease. Ayurveda actually lists milk as one of the five white poisons.