Raw Milk vs. Pasteurized: What's the difference?

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

I began this blog almost three years ago, and for most of that time I have had on my "to-do" list to write a post about why I prefer to drink raw milk. Well, I'm not really getting around to it: I am borrowing a well-written summary from someone else.

Right now, you can go and cast your vote to raise awareness with the new Obama team to help get the issue of legalizing raw milk into their "top ten issues" list. You will have to sign up for the site, but it is a quick and simple procedure--you can always cancel your account right after. Just go to:

This post was written by Mary Rudinger, who included this in the comments on the voting page. With her permission, I am reprinting it here:

Milk straight from the cow is how mankind drank it for thousands of years. In the late 1800s, as people moved into the cities, urban confinement dairies sprang up. "Swill dairies" was the name given to feedlots where cows were fed swill from nearby liquor distilleries. Open milk wagons moving through city streets with horse manure complicated things. Milk from these dairies was of such poor quality that it was thought to be contributing to the high death rate of urban infants at the time (the yearly death rate of U.S. infants in cities was about half of the yearly birth rate).
In the 21st century, pasteurization is unnecessary if cows are raised in clean environments. Modern dairy procedures no longer necessitate sterilization. For the public health, raw milk must be a lawful choice for consumers who have studied the issue and choose raw milk.

Pasteurizing and homogenizing deprives milk of its natural nutritional content, and adds artificial chemicals and hormones. A propaganda campaign of germ phobia was launched in the early 1900s that exists to this day. The powers that be frightened city folk about the bacteria in raw milk. The propagandists did not reveal that raw milk has enzymes and lactic acids that prevent bad bacteria from growing. They did not reveal that when the inherent bacteria enter pasteurized milk, it grows quicker and becomes harmful because it is fed on the mutations and contaminants caused by pasteurization. Milk contaminated with bovine fecal matter and bovine disease could be sold as long as it had been pasteurized. In time, cows were dosed with hormones and antibiotics. Farmers could be sloppy, cows could be dirty or diseased, and milk became a cheap commodity designed for long shelf life, not human health.

According to the Weston A. Price Foundation:

"Pasteurization destroys enzymes, diminishes vitamin content, denatures fragile milk proteins, destroys vitamins C, B12 and B6, kills beneficial bacteria, promotes pathogens and is associated with allergies, increased tooth decay, colic in infants, growth problems in children, osteoporosis, arthritis, heart disease and cancer. Calves fed pasteurized milk do poorly and many die before maturity. Raw milk sours naturally but pasteurized milk turns putrid; processors must remove slime and pus from pasteurized milk by a process of centrifugal clarification. Inspection of dairy herds for disease is not required for pasteurized milk. Much commercial milk is now ultra-pasteurized to get rid of heat-resistant bacteria and give it a longer shelf life. Ultra-pasteurization is a violent process that takes milk from a chilled temperature to above the boiling point in less than two seconds.”

Homogenization strains fat particles through tiny pores under great pressure. Because of homogenization, an enzyme called xanthine oxidase is able to pass through the gut wall into the bloodstream intact where it attacks plasmalogen within artery walls. Plasmalogen is a tissue that makes up 30 percent of human heart muscle and artery wall cells. The body registers an injury and sends its nurse, cholesterol, to the scene to lay down bandaids – what we call cholesterol plaques. Over time, they calcify. Eventually this leads to blockage of blood flow, arteriosclerosis. Some doctors believe that the rise in heart attacks in America corresponds with the rise in consumption of homogenized milk.

The economic fight to kill raw milk is tremendous. For example, Dr. Al Sears wrote on 8-11-18: “You know I’ve raised some serious concerns about the health hazards of commercial milk. Specifically, I’ve talked about how pasteurizing and homogenizing strips milk of some natural nutritional content—not to mention the addition of artificial chemicals and hormones… The Australian Dairy Industry Council’s (ADIC) response was not friendly. They accused me of being a hired gun whose ideas about health and wellness make me a biased commentator. The phrase was ‘Mr. Rent a Statement for money’ and asked if I had anything better to do than write ‘false and misleading articles.’ Even the most skeptical reader would be hard-pressed to show how I profited from my statements about the dangers of commercial dairy products. I’m not in the business of selling milk. I don’t have any connection to the industry. All I did was suggest that organic milk was a better alternative, and cited a new study proving it.”

Too many people suffer from chronic illness. It is time to sift out the PR hype and competitive interests from the fact, and allow people to make their own choices in this matter. It took citizen activist groups to draw attention to the trans fat issue, and to the problems with mercury fillings. It is time we stopped letting the dairymen’s lobbyists dictate this issue.

Mary has been published in newsletters and health magazines. She says:

"I am amazed that the Obama site has the time to turn something like this around, that's great. I am holding an Obama-Daschle health care discussion in the Phoenix area December 28th. I am amazed how many people opened their databases to me, amazed at how much people want input into not just health care 'reform,' but the holistic perspective of creating a healthier population such that we need fewer medical services/interventions."

If anyone is interested in attending Mary's health care talk, please contact me (address at left) for her e-mail address.

Be well!

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