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Organic Milk - benefits of milk.

Updated on August 26, 2012
A mature Holstein cow, reputedly the best milk producer in the world.
A mature Holstein cow, reputedly the best milk producer in the world. | Source
Drink milk.  Delicious and good for you.
Drink milk. Delicious and good for you. | Source
Milk produced conventionally by a herd of Holstein cows in captivity.
Milk produced conventionally by a herd of Holstein cows in captivity. | Source
Drink milk. It makes you smile.
Drink milk. It makes you smile. | Source
Organic milk produced by cows left in fields is found to be more nutritious and safe.
Organic milk produced by cows left in fields is found to be more nutritious and safe. | Source

Drink Milk

Milk - have you ever stopped to think why your parents had you drinking milk from infancy till as long as they could interest you in drinking milk? Whole milk as infants and reduced fat milk as you reached toddler-hood.

Kids drink milk as a natural start to their day, and schools have to supply milk at lunch in order to be funded by the State.

Cow's Milk for Babies.

Cow's milk is not recommended for babies under 6 months. After a year, limit the amount of cow's milk to no more than 2-3 cups a day. Babies given too much other milk than breastmilk are at risk of iron-deficiency anemia, because milk blocks absorption of iron. Remember too that cow's milk for babies is always controversial, and the pediatrician should always be consulted.

Benefits of Milk

Milk is a delicious drink and a complete food for children: high in protein for muscle growth and repair and energy; calcium for bones and teeth; phosphorus for bone maintenance and energy; potassium for blood pressure maintenance; Vitamin D for absorption of calcium and bone growth; Vitamin B12 for red blood cells and nerve maintenance; Vitamin A for vision and skin and the immune system; Riboflavin (Vit. B2) which converts food into energy and Niacin for metabolising sugars and fatty acids. One 8-oz glass of milk does pack a punch.

Milk is Good for You - But

But milk also has calories, and has to be moderated to the child's age and weight. Besides, milk is filling and a full child will refuse the wide variety of other nutrient-rich foods. The American Academy of Pediatricians recommends:

Ages 1-3: 2 servings a day of whole milk. After age 2, switch to reduced fat milk. But if the child is gaining too much weight, switch earlier, before age 2. Ages 4-8: 3 servings. Ages 9-18: 4 servings.

Serving Fat-free Milk for Weight-Control

One serving is one 8-oz. glass. Too much milk can be linked to childhood obesity. If there is a weight problem, give the older child fat-free milk, which has 80 calories in 8 ozs. as against 150 in whole milk, and 120 in 2%. Fat-free milk can be flavored for a better taste - whipped with strawberries or banana. How about fat-free chocolate milk, even if it has a little sugar? One teaspoon of sugar carries 15 calories. The health benefits of milk are too important to give up for a little sugar.

Milk can be substituted with yogurt or cheese if you prefer. A cup of yogurt is equivalent to a cup of milk except it might have a higher protein content without the antimicrobial properties of milk. A serving of cheese is 1.5 oz. or 6 dice-sized cubes.

Milk against Poverty and Malnutrition.

Milk is a dominant food in many developing countries and as long as milk is made available to all, it would go a long way toward reducing poverty and malnutrition in the world. India is the largest producer and consumer of milk in the world and neither imports nor exports its milk. In rural India, milk is delivered by a milkman on his bicycle with the large metal can of bulk milk sitting on the carrier behind or in front of him. The householder brings her jug to carry the milk home.

The FDA's Campaign against Raw Milk

Raw Milk? Pasteurisation of milk started in 1883, to kill most of the disease causing pathogens that raw milk collected on its journey from the udder to the consumer. Although true that raw milk has natural antimicrobial properties and vitamins that are destroyed by the heat of pasteurisation, it also was reputedly responsible for many hundreds of cases of food poisoning between 1998 and 2008, which resulted in 2 deaths. The Food and Drug Administration mandates pasteurisation of milk for human consumption, policing raw food clubs that have started up to sell raw milk to members. As a matter of fact, it has recently declared that fresh raw milk is 150 more dangerous than pasteurised milk.

Raw milk proponents say that milk from cows fed good organic grass and clover and milked hygenically should be free from disease-causing microorganisms. However, milk can come in contact with bacteria from many sources: an infected udder, the cow's skin, cow feces or dirty equipment.

The banning of raw milk sale in many States resulted in illegal cross-border trafficking of raw milk. Some states that ban the retail sale allow the sale at the farm itself; some states require customers to bring their own containers; most that allow farm sale require labeling of the milk as 'Not Pasteurised'. Whatever the law, people will drink milk of their choice nonetheless, and will go to great lengths to affirm their rights.

Why do they allow artificial Bovine Growth Hormone in Milk?

The US is the only industrialised country that has not banned the use of artificial Bovine Growth Hormone, or rBST, produced by Monsanto as Posilac. This drug increases milk production by seven to eight pounds per day over the period of each lactation. Studies have shown that this hormone, injected into the cow on the fiftieth day of its lactation cycle to slow down the death of mammary cells, goes into its milk and, ingested by humans, has been shown to be carcinogenic.

Besides its effect on humans, Posilac causes a 25% higher incidence of mastitis, a reduction in fertility and increased clinical signs of lameness, and painful injection site reactions.Because of its effects on animal health, this artificial hormone is banned by Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Japan and all the EU countries. The EU does not import US milk products.

FDA Supports rBST in Milk. False Claims of Safety and Quality

In the States, popular outcry has resulted in a lot of stores banning rBST treated milk despite Monsanto's numerous suits against any anti rBST labelling of the milk by dairy producers. Many lawmakers in government work hand in glove with Monsanto to push rBST-treated milk to consumers. The FDA proclaims that there is no difference in the composition or quality of milk between rBST and non rBST treated cows, and that Bovine Growth Hormone is inactive when ingested by humans.

The National Dairy Council's Claims Trashed by Independent Research.

The National Dairy Council says that there is no difference in nutrients or safety between conventionally produced milk and organic milk; that it is just as pure, safe and nutritious. According to the Danish Council of Agricultural Sciences, cows fed on fresh grass, clover pasture, and grass cover silage produced milk with 50% more Vitamin E, 75% more betacarotene (Vit. A), 2-3 times more lutein and zeaxanthine and more omega-3 fatty acids.

Stores That Will Not Sell Milk with Human Growth Hormone

Walmart, Kroger and Costco have pledged not to sell rBST treated milk in its stores nationwide. Likewise Winder Farms, Greenway Farms, Safeway and Chipotle Mexican Grill (sour cream); Starbucks and Ben and Jerry's ice cream.will not use it.

Cow milk is the most commonly drunk milk, but other sorts are marketed too, for those with cow's milk allergies or lactose intolerance. Goat milk, lactose-free milk, soy milk, almond milk, rice milk are among them.

Drink Milk - It Is Good for You.

A surprising research finding by Professor Peter Elwood of Cardiff University says that milk reduces heart disease and stroke by 15-20%. It seems it also reduces Type 2 diabetes, colon cancer and possibly bladder cancer. Another study by Dr. Brian Roy of Canada's Brosk University has published that young adults drinking milk after weight training have lost more fat and gained more muscle mass than those who drank other drinks with similar energy and macronutrients.

Milk and milk products, with all their accompanying contradictions, have been, since Biblical times and before, a profoundly important human food. Drinking milk will continue till the end of our time.



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    • profile image

      TaraXin 5 years ago

      great article! also, people should make sure to always drink organic milk :)

    • profile image

      Midnight Scholar 5 years ago

      I still prefer to stick with the organic milk...what used to be just milk. One can never know the long term effect of genetically altered foods until it's too late. Nice enlightening article..

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      Right on! I'm buying organic myself. Love going to Trader Joe's for all my stuff.

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      Thank you. Tastes better too, especially when you know you're not going to mutate.

    • moretea3 profile image

      moretea3 5 years ago

      Hi, Mizjo,

      I am all for going organic.

      As a child, I had the opportunity of growing up in an environment, where cows were kept as domestic animals. These cows also provided an alternative source of income for families.

      Memories are flooding in; for instance, the Bengali man who made his usual visit to the village to sell milk by the ladle.

      As the milk came fresh from his cows in his cow shed, my mother boiled it, before she gave a glass each, for me and my siblings to drink.

      I always enjoyed the smooth, thick "skin" that formed on top of the glass, as the milked cooled.

      Thank you for this moment to recall pleasant, childhood memories.

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      There's no milk like the fresh, unpasteurised, raw, warm, fragrant, foamy milk from the farm cows. I loved it from the Indian milk man.

      I had a second chance at that wonderful milk when I lived on an Irish farm and that darling farmer's mother passed the bucket of warm milk through the window.

    • moretea3 profile image

      moretea3 5 years ago

      It's a good thing that there wasn't a hole in the bucket. "There's a hole in my bucket, dear Liza, dear Liza...", as sung by Harry Belafonte. I tend to use non-GM soya-based milk ('So Good' brand), or oat; sometimes, goat milk instead.

    • profile image

      Lah lah lah! 5 years ago

      Does drinking too much milk make you pale?

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      Hmm, never noticed a hole, because the milk was drunk so fast (just loved it) there was no chance of any leftover to leak.

      Have never tried goat milk, but I've read it's very rich. I like goat cheese though. Eat it on crackers. With some grapes on the side, it's a lovely lunch.

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      Cleopatra used to bathe in it, for her skin, but I don't know if it made her pale. Haven't heard of her drinking it.

    • moretea3 profile image

      moretea3 5 years ago

      Yes, goat milk can be a bit strong. Although I tend to buy other sources of milk, I do choose cow's milk, providing it is organic and free of lactose, which does make me feel bloated. It is a case of eliminating what does not suit me.

    • profile image

      moretea3 5 years ago

      I don't know about drinking milk making a person pale. What I do know is this. For a quick 'pick me up', I break an egg into a glass. Next, I fill it with milk and mix well, and honey (instead of sugar) to taste. It is called an 'egg flip'. Good source of protein.

      It was originally mixed with alcohol, often beer, and depending on an individual's taste, vanilla extract, a bit of spice, or grated nutmeg can be added. If cream is added, it is known as an 'eggnog'.

      Caution: Careful, when giving raw egg to a young baby or older person, who may be vulnerable. I use fresh eggs, thanks to my ex-battery hens.

      k

    • profile image

      Cely Portugues 5 years ago

      Yes it is so important to use only organic anything, especially milk. We cannot afford to take the poisons into our systems that the government agencies allow to go into our food.

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      The one time I had eggnog, it was Christmas Eve,it had rum in it, was to-die-for delicious, and almost killed me. I broke out in huge red itchy weals.

      I was on Night shift. Had to go down to the ER for some Benadryl and almost fell asleep on the job. Thank God it was Christmas Eve and there was only one patient between the two of us.

      I never had eggnog again.

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      Right, Cely. We have to be our own watchdogs. Going organic is the only way; we can trust the label because of the stringent certification procedures.

    • moretea3 profile image

      moretea3 5 years ago

      Depending on which country you happen to live in, look for the label that says, "RSPCA Freedom Food". It promotes organic dairy farming, which requires high quality standards for dairy cows. For instance, during the grazing season, dairy cows have access to pasture for at least several hours each day. The exception to this is the first weeks when they lactate.

      This website gives more information not just about dairy cows but also pigs, chickens, turkeys, etc. And about buying 'free range':-

      http://www.ciwf.org.uk/farm_animals/cows/dairy_cow...

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      great info, Moretea3. With our dependence on animals for our food, they too depend on us for kind treatment during their lifetime.

    • moretea3 profile image

      moretea3 5 years ago

      When shopping for your groceries, buy milk and other food produce that have labels, which say 'organic' and 'free range'. They ensures that food is produced to genuinely higher standards of welfare.

      There are several organic outlets where I live, that source their produce from nearby farms. Buying locally grown food also helps in reducing CO2 emissions, or carbon footprint.

    • mizjo profile image
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      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      You are very lucky indeed, Moretea3, to live in an environmentally-conscious community. Patronising our neighbouring organic farms ensures that they remain viable and that we remain fed with fresh produce untainted by chemicals and poisons. It also ensures that prices of organic foods stay manageable, so that lower income people do not have to buy the cheaper, mass produced chemically-preserved vegetables and fruits of supermarkets which usually have been delivered long-distance by trucks (lorries) spewing their CO2 on their way from factory-farms.

    • moretea3 profile image

      moretea3 5 years ago

      Is almond milk huge in the USA? I've just found "alpro" almond milk, which is free from lactose and is also dairy free. Adding almonds provides magnesium and calcium for strong bones; compounds known as phytochemicals and vitamin E (an antioxidant) that help to protect against heart diseases.

      I tend to drink lactose-free organic cow's milk, to avoid bloating in my stomach, and recently discovered "kallo" chocolate organic soya drink, which is kind on my tummy. It has added calcium, vit.B2,B12,D&E, and is free from lactose and cholesterol (1.1g animal fat per 100ml or 0.1 litre. Also, buying this FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) carton supports responsible forest management. Caution: May contain traces of other nuts. Check it out.

    • moretea3 profile image

      moretea3 5 years ago

      Hello, Mizjo. Just to say that I appreciate our four-legged friends. When I have nothing much to eat and I am hungry, and have not been to the grocers yet, there is lactose-free milk in my fridge. Saved by Taurus, my star sign too! I have almost forgotten how delicious milk is on its own too, and what a nearly complete food it is. Just going to get myself a glass now, to ward off that niggling crave for a cake or chocolate bar. "Slurp, slurp", that's me enjoying that silky, white liquid!

    • moretea3 profile image

      moretea3 5 years ago

      Come to think of it, when I drive around the countryside these days and further afield, I don't seem to see many cows. Sheep, yes; so, where have they all gone? I guess, I'll have to wait until the cows come home. Could it have been partly due to the 'foot and mouth' disease of years gone by?

    • thougtforce profile image

      Christina Lornemark 5 years ago from Sweden

      I drink milk daily too and I usually drink the organic milk! Thanks for the information about all the health benefits, it is good to know! Voted up, useful

      Tina

    • sofs profile image

      sofs 5 years ago

      Milk, skim milk, organic is a great choice. I need to get that one glass of milk down my children throat and would do anything for it. They need all the calcium and other nutrients they get from milk and so do I! Thanks for sharing!

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      I might have seen 'alpro' in WholeFoods. The array of milks produced nowadays to cater to all tastes and intolerances is simply wonderful.

      Can't say I've discovered 'kallo' though. I like soy, though I've recently heard some negatives about it. Have to do some research on that.

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      Hi, Tina. Nice to see you here. Yes, milk is such a delicious drink and knowing it doesn't contain harmful sdditives makes it doubly so.

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      You're very welcome, Sofs. I love your logo, by the way.

      Most children like milk, but some contrary ones just hate it, and one has to find some other way for them to get their needed calcium, fats, vitamins etc.. Good thing we have the varieties on the market shelves nowadays - soy, almond, rice - which makes it easier. And of course, choose organic.

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 5 years ago from New York City, NY

      Hello, sofs, I love your logo.

      Luckily for modern parents. the market shelves carry alternative sorts of milk- rice, almond, soy for example - so children need not go without these important nutrients.

    • profile image

      moretea3 5 years ago

      I like it that I can buy semi-skimmed milk with added plant sterol, in the hope of reducing my total cholesterol to 5 or less than 5.0mmol/l. It was 6.0mmol/1, when my fasting blood test was last taken. Taking sterol in a drink as nice as organic milk is cheaper than buying a tub of Benecol margarine, which is expensive. There was a also time when milk with added omega 3 was available on the shelf, but I have not seen it lately. I have even seen coconut 'milk' being added to the regular pint! Producers seem to be getting more and more inventive and imaginative.

    • moretea3 profile image

      moretea3 4 years ago

      Hi! Mizjo,

      As already commented on your hub "The Moran Clan Descends on the Wongs", coconut water is a refreshing and delicious drink, which is being promoted as the selling drink in the States.

      In my view, milk remains as one of the most nutritious foods that has many more health benefits, both for younger and older people.

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 4 years ago from New York City, NY

      You bet. Milk, we've learned since first grade, is a complete food with everything a baby needs to grow. So delicious when cold or foaming warm straight from the cow on an organic farm.

      But boy, when you see the young coconuts on a stall in Chinatown on a hot summer's day, you'd kill for one of them.

    • moretea3 profile image

      moretea3 4 years ago

      Milk also has uses other than for drinking. While watching the tv programme, "Edwardian Farm" (about taking a trip back in time to recreate life as lived then), it showed how to remove ink stains from a piece of clothing. Soak the stained bit in milk for half an hour before putting it in the wash. There, did anyone know that?

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 4 years ago from New York City, NY

      Haven't heard of that one, though have heard of or read other strange ones in my time. I'll be blowed if can recall them though.

    • moretea3 profile image

      moretea3 4 years ago

      Nonetheless, I have begun drinking more milk, in order to deter osteoporosis (thinning of bone tissue and loss of bone density over time).

      As you have already mentioned above, milk is the best source of calcium for children's growing teeth and bones, and a source of Vitamin D that helps in the absorption of calcium.

      It can be so easily consumed: pour a glassful and simply drink, without having to cook or warm up. A great help to busy parents, indeed.

      We used to have free milk for schoolchildren, but the provision got 'cut' by the then government in office. I remember that my son illustrated in his drawing, a bottle of milk being cut with a kitchen knife! :)

    • jojokaya profile image

      jojokaya 4 years ago from USA

      Great hub. We use to drink fat free milk at home.

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 4 years ago from New York City, NY

      Hi, Jojokaya, nice of you to drop by. Yes, milk is a wonderful drink. It's been a mainstay of a people's diet since ancient times, and no matter what modern doctors, researchers and naysayers say, it will continue to the end of time.

      I'm reading your wonderful recipes, and I'm following you too.

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 4 years ago from New York City, NY

      Haven't they brought back the free milk program yet? Milk for schoolkids could save the government money for dental care for them.

    • moretea3 profile image

      moretea3 4 years ago

      Here are some excerpts from BBC news and Wikipedia relating to the topic of free milk to schools:

      -----------------------------------------------------------

      Education Secretary (1970–1974)

      "...and Thatcher was subsequently appointed Secretary of State for Education and Science. ... She ... imposed public expenditure cuts on the state education system, resulting in the abolition of free milk for schoolchildren aged seven to eleven.[44] She held that few children would suffer if schools were charged for milk, but she agreed to provide younger children with a third of a pint daily, for nutritional purposes.[44] Her decision provoked a storm of protest ... [45] leading to the moniker "Margaret Thatcher, Milk Snatcher".[44] Thatcher wrote in her autobiography: "I learned a valuable lesson [from the experience]. I had incurred the maximum of political odium for the minimum of political benefit."[45][46]

      Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Thatcher

      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      Milk scheme

      The 1946 School Milk Act provided 1/3 pint free for every school child under 18

      Wilson's 1968 Labour government took it away from secondary school pupils

      As education minister in 1971, Margaret Thatcher withdrew it from over-7s

      Free milk for five-seven-year-olds ended in 1980

      1.3m primary school pupils get free or subsidised milk

      The EU spent £5.8m subsidising dairy products for UK schools in 2003

      ----------------------------------------------------------------

      Government denies threat to free milk for under-5s -

      The government has pledged to continue to provide free milk to all under-fives in the UK despite ordering a review of the scheme. ...

      ... The Nursery Milk scheme allows children under five in approved day care to receive 189ml a day.

      It dates back to 1940, when milk was issued to pregnant women and young children to protect them against wartime food shortages.

      Under the current system schools buy the milk and distribute it, then claim back the money from the government. ...

      Source: bbc.co.uk/news (20 November 2011 Last updated at 00:39)

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 4 years ago from New York City, NY

      I wonder if milk allergy was ever an issue in the days when milk was free for all children till age 18?

      The Iron Lady privatised so many services and caused inflation to shoot up.

    • Angela Brummer profile image

      Angela Brummer 4 years ago from Lincoln, Nebraska

      Really nice hub!

    • mizjo profile image
      Author

      mizjo 4 years ago from New York City, NY

      Hi, Angela, thank you, and thanks for visiting.

    • profile image

      Jill Deibel 4 years ago

      Great article! I just started researching the topic of organic milk to see if I should switch my kids over to it. Your article has been very informative!

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