Thursday, May 8, 2014

My experiments with raw milk

By experiment - I mean drinking it.

Let me back up a bit.  Raw milk?  Huh?  I am referring to milk that has not been pasteurized.  I already bought milk that was vat pasteurized because of the taste and still buy that for my yogurt making.  One day I saw a documentary on raw milk.  (I watch a LOT of documentaries)  Seems that un-processed milk is something the government doesn't like us to drink.  There are a lot of good reasons for that, but some of them have to do with conditions at factory farms not small farms.  More importantly you can't take it across state lines, even for personal use.  (the FDA has backed down on this a bit and won't go after individuals)  The government was going whole hog after some Amish farmers and really screwing them over.  Of all the groups of people they probably deserve that the least.  Not that anyone does, but these people have a history of just being plain nice.  They forgive.  I mean they really forgive.  Most people don't do that even in words, much less in spirit.  Anyway - I get sidetracked.... Obviously the Amish drink raw milk.  Their way of life would not include factory farming.  They remain a pretty darn healthy bunch of people and don't seem to die from it.  They sold to their neighbors and then the FDA had a conniption fit and swooped in disrupting everyone's lives.

There are supposedly a LOT of reasons to drink raw milk.  Lots of websites will give you the good and bad.  I wanted to drink it because the FDA says i shouldn't and in many states it's flat out illegal.  I was always that kid who did the opposite of what I was told for not other reason than someone told me not to.  And some government organization telling me that I can't make my own mind up irked me.  This is from the FDA in a response document

"There is no 'deeply rooted' historical tradition of unfettered access to foods of all kinds." [p. 26]

"Plaintiffs' assertion of a 'fundamental right to their own bodily and physical health, which includes what foods they do and do not choose to consume for themselves and their families' is similarly unavailing because plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to obtain any food they wish." [p.26]

Learn more:

follow the link.  Natural News may be biased but they didn't force the FDA to put stuff in writing.

AND WTF???  I don't have a fundamental right to obtain any food I wish?  Oh yes I do

So I bought some.

Having to sign a release to buy food made my rebellious spirit kind of happy.

Here's what I didn't expect.

I like it.  I mean I really really like it.  I don't drink milk.  The stuff in cartons from the store is NASTY and I have not ever been willing to drink it.  I have always hated it.  Figured I would use this for cooking but had to try at least one glass.  MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM  I've had several glasses since then.  It's so yummy.

It hasn't made me drop 30lbs over night or have endless energy.  There are a lot of claims, but then they say the same for kombucha, vitamin c, raw food, tumeric, green coffee extract...and so on and so on.

It's only been a few days but I have noticed some positive changes.   I sleep better.  I can be a restless sleeper, so this is wonderful.  My allergies are getting better.  Rapidly.  With me spring allergies almost always progress into a difficult to treat sinus infection.  Today I noticed that I was doing activities without needing a rag shoved in my face.  It's much easier to exercise with two hands!

It's early in the "experiment" far too early to say that this is going to make a lasting change.  I'll keep drinking it and see what happens.

I also bought cream.

Put it in the blender and now I have butter!

I cant' say that raw milk is for everyone and there are risks, especially if you buy from a farmer who is less than careful.   I like it so far (only 1 gallon in) and I enjoy drinking it enough to take those risks.  Food borne illness happens with lots of things, bagged greens and badly treated meat come to mind.  I don't see this risk as any greater.  Based on the math of how many people get sick from dairy in general and raw dairy in particular the risk is small.  After all a study from the USDA in 1996 showed that 80% of ground meat contained some bad pathogens.  Cooking kills them, but every so often you hear about people who get sick or die from some hamburger joint not cooking the meat all the way.  In one outbreak alone (1993) 4 children died, 176 were left with permanent kidney problems and over 735 were actually infected.  Since then there have been 22 documented outbreaks (of ecoli in restaurants, not overall in all foods that number is through the roof) and 35 deaths.  Since the 80s there has only been one death from consuming raw dairy.  I'm not so worried.

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