Following the disaster at the Fukushima plant in Japan, radiation has officially been found in cow’s milk in Washington State. Oregonians concerned for their own health have been asking if our milk is at risk, but the real question is whether or not dairy even has a place in a healthy Portlander’s diet.
The truth about dairy? Not so satisfying. All of the moo related messages have been brilliant marketing based in not-so-factual physiological theories.
Research has shown that dairy not only doesn’t help to build strong bones, it can actually cause bone loss due to dairy’s acidity and protein structure.
The recommendations from the USDA’s food pyramid were created using a lot of input by agricultural industry, meaning the people who stand to profit from you consuming their products are the ones telling you to eat their products, with the clout of the government behind them.
Additional research has also linked dairy to cancer. The precise numbers: 90% of cancers are PREVENTABLE, only 10% are caused by genetics. Of the 90% of cases that are preventable, the number one factor found to have increased overall cancer risk? Increased casein intake, the primary protein in all dairy.
In addition to the health effects, dairy production also:
*Pollutes drinking water due to run off from farms
*Contributes to the veal industry (since male calves born to milk producing mamma cows are of little use to farmers)
*Contributes to starvation around the globe (because the resources required to produce dairy and meat are far more than those required to produce veggies and grains, therefore leading to less overall food production)
As a former cheese addict, I will admit that my recent venture into dairy-free living was rocky. At first I felt such a strong urge to snack on some cheese that it felt like torture to go without! Lasagna, pizza, pasta, Mexican foods!
After learning more about the effects protein in milk have on the brain, I now understand that I was literally addicted to cheese. That’s right: dairy has similar effects to opioids, like heroine, on the brain. This leads to cravings and symptoms associated with withdrawal. Given enough time the cravings will go away, so push through and your break-up with dairy will only get easier.
So avoid radiation and tons of other health and environmental detriments by leaving dairy where it belongs: in a cow.
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