|Milk should be whole, grassfed, and hormone free!|
Because, you see, I think both parties are wrong. And right. And they are both wrong and right because neither is basing their opinion on milk on good information.
First of all, based on I don't know what the hell (and I looked), the author states that fat inhibits the absorption of calcium. I only found one study that states this... in people with partial gastrectomy. Not to mention the fact that the study wasn't looking at the affect of milk fat, they only saw this affect when they used palm oil, which has a markedly different composition and structure than milkfat.
And there's the complete lack of logic behind the idea. Vitamin D is absolutely vital in the process of absorbing calcium. Oh wait, vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin, meaning that, in food at least, it is only present in the fat. The idea that the synthetic calcium in skim milk is easier to absorb than the real, natural vitamin D in whole milk is beyond ridiculous.
Secondly, both sides are assuming the conventional view that dairy fat makes you fat is true. It's not. There has been no study done showing that people who consume low fat dairy weigh less, whether they studied kids, adolescents, or adults. In fact, in like two seconds, I found two recent studies showing that people who eat full fat dairy weigh less. Yes, I know, correlation doesn't equal causation (something the conventional opinion ignores often enough). They aren't necessarily skinny because of the whole fat milk. But they sure as hell aren't fat because of it, either. (Study 1 and Study 2, btw).
KIDS NEED FAT.
Real, natural, animal based fat. Fat and cholesterol contain the building blocks for the skin, the brain, and most of the other cells of the body. 30 years ago, because of the faulty lipid hypothesis, we were all encouraged to eat less fat and more carbs. In the years since our intake of both meat and fat have dropped significantly, yet we are obese and the incidence of chronic diseases, especially auto-immune diseases (allergies, asthma, ADHD, autism, celiac...). Connection? I know I just said correlation does not equal causation, but correlation is a good reason to take a deeper look into something. Our low animal high processed carb diet is obviously not working, so it's time to look into something else. And I not only believe this based on both my gut and the studies and research I have read, but because of the annecdotal evidence I have seen in my own life. I used to be a preschool teacher, for nearly 6 years. You see a lot of kids in 3 years. You are in extremely close contact with them, and you know all of their dietary quirks. Because I was a teacher in a college town, many of my students were either vegetarian or vegan, and every. single. one of them had mental or behavioral deficits and many had skin problems. I've mentioned her before, but the most extreme case was a girl whose whole family was vegan. At 4 she barely spoke, had serious rage issues, was allergic to wheat, and had eczema over 90% of her body. Can I say with 100% accuracy that her family's dietary habits contributed to this? No. But I can make deductions based on that, my experience with the many others, and my experience with my own kids.
I've told the story before, but in a nutshell- when my kids were younger, we ate "healthy," but according to the conventional dietary advice. At 18 months and 3.5 years both developed various upper respiratory illnesses and had them for the next 9 months. The infections were so bad and so frequent that they basically diagnosed my son with asthma, and both kids were frequently using an inhaler. I question everything, and I don't view being sick as normal. Something causes it. My gut told me not to write it all off as average childhood illnesses, and to try and find the root of the problem. Eventually I pressured my pediatrician into doing allergy testing, and both tested positive for food allergies (wheat and dairy). This lead me to do extensive research, which lead me to my quest for the TRUTH about nutrition and food, and Nourishing Traditions, and the rest is history. I cured my kids of their food allergies in about 6 months by following the principles lined out in NT- lots of animal fat (no dairy at first), soaked grains (no wheat at first), always cooking vegetables with animal fat, including lots of cultured foods, and severely limiting sugar and refined carbs.
Kids need dairy. Which is where I agree with the author.
But not all dairy is equal, which is where I (kind of...) agree with the vegan doctors (on just this one partial point, although not for the same reasons). Because, you see, I would rather my kids drink no milk at all than the industrial, conventional, hormone ridden, homogenized, dead, nonfat milk served in most schools. While I believe the hormones in milk are bad for everyone, they are especially bad for our kids. As long as schools are serving this industrial sludge, especially in lowfat and sugar filled chocolate varieties, I think we should avoid it at all costs. Change at this level is hard, but we can start with two easy to meet demands- hormone free, and whole (oh, and no more chocolate, but I guess that's three!).
The only way we can realistically expect change, though, is by voting with our wallets and standing up!
This post has been shared on the Nourishing Gourmet's Pennywise Platter, Beyond the Peel's Keep it Real Thursday, Kelly the Kitchen Kop's Real Food Wednesday, Real Food Forager's Fat Tuesday, and Food Renegade's Fight Back Friday.