Dairy comprises an overly significant part of the Standard American Diet (SAD)  All the plant based doctors and nutritionists that I've ever read or heard speak have all said that Dairy is the first thing that should be eliminated from our diets.  And usually it is the last!  More and more evidence appears regularly that shows that dairy contributes to or causes many of our most serious diseases: Cancer, Heart Disease, Osteoporosis and Diabetes (to name of few of the worst)  Each disease is worthy of it's own chapter , and I will certainly give them their fair time and explanation is succeeding blogs.

Dairy is high in saturated fat, excess protein (animal protein) , and cholesterol (fat and cholesterol are two separate items...you can have low fat with high cholesterol and low cholesterol with high fat) Diets high in these ingredients are prime candidates for cardiovascular disease.  Stroke is similar to heart disease. In simple terms, it is a clogging of arteries to the brain, as opposed to the heart.   When I refer to Dairy, I'm referring to ALL of it...milk, cheese, butter, ice cream, cottage cheese, cream cheese  etc. 

Cancer of the breast and prostate is closely related to consumption of dairy products. Cow's milk is basically a hormone delivery system which supplies vital nutrients and hormones for a baby calf, not a baby human. The composition of cow's milk and human milk is significantly different with human milk actually resembling rat's milk more closely than cow's milk. (protein, fat content  and other nutrients)  Most of the countries that consume the most dairy, have the highest rates of breast and prostate cancer (US, Scandinavia near the top)

Diabetes is closely linked with dairy consumption, especially in children. The insulin producing cells of the pancreas are affected (or destroyed) in children from ingredients in dairy. 

Osteoporosis is the disease that seems to have the best "press" about the virtues of drinking milk to build strong bones and prevent this crippling disease.  But the reverse seems to be the truth. Once again, the countries with the highest consumption of dairy have the highest rates of osteoporosis and hip fractures.  Osteoporosis is not a disease of too little calcium, but rather a disease of too much protein. Excess protein leaches calcium out of the body through the urinary system. Milk is high in calcium but also high in protein.  As we drink milk (and this is more true for later on in life) the excess protein in the milk pulls the calcium right out, and so no gain in calcium is seen.  It is better to get calcium from vegetables such as leafy greens (kale is a good source), brocolli,  and beans, to name a few.

There are many other problems caused by dairy that have lesser consequences than the above major diseases.  (allergies, colic, gastrointestinal issues, iron deficiency anemia, tolerance build up to antibiotics...to name a few)  

Dr. T.  Colin Campbell, author of "The China Study" (www.thechinastudy.com) once said that casein, found in dairy, is the worst ingredient humans ingest.  He shows in his book the direct links to cancer. You'd think the message would be more accepted by now with the general public, or at least within the medical profession.  But in this country, there seems to be no end to its popularity.  Dairy can be looked at as liquid meat.  It is not healthier than animal flesh, and should be reduced or eliminated from one's diet.

For more information about dairy, I recommend the incredibly comprehensive and informative site  of  Robert Cohen, the Not Milkman:

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Cancer and the dairy connection. There are many reasons why dairy is more and more closely linked to cancer. The one I'll discuss here isIGF-1, or Insulin-Like Growth Hormone 1.  There are many articles on-line about this hormone so I'll just give a fairly simple explanation of what it is and what it does.  IGF-1 is a hormone produced by mammals in the liver and body tissues. It's main function is to promote cell growth and cell development.  IGF-1 levels increase dramatically with the addition of  recombinant bovine somatotrophin (rBST)...the controversial ingredient that is injected into cows to increase milk production.  But keep in mind that all  milk from cows has IGF-1, whether treated or not with rBST.  The levels of IGF-1 in humans are shown to increase as the amounts of dairy in our diets increase. Articles have been written stating that even very small increases in levels of IGF-1 in humans are linked to an increase in many types of cancers, most notably breast and prostate cancer.  In 1998, a study at the Harvard Medical School showed conclusively that IGF-1 was a major factor in prostate cancer.  Other tests done around that time concluded showed evidence of IGF-1 and it's link to breast and colon cancer.

Countries that consume the most milk are showing statistically that they have the highest rates of  breast and prostate cancer (and very high rates of colon cancer )  The more IGF-1 in the bloodstream, (due to rBST), the higher the incidences of cancer.  It's in the farmers' best interests to have each cow produce the maximum possible amount of milk.  Some countries have banned the use of rBST to increase production, but once again , please remember that all milk, even organic milk , had IGF-1 in it. It's part of the structure of milk, not an additive. If you drink milk, or consume dairy products, you will elevate the levels of IGF-1 in your body and you will be increasing the risks of many types of cancer.  There is absolutely no reason to use dairy products. They do more harm than good. Most people in the world do NOT consume dairy ( humans are lactose intolerant, some civilizations  more than others) We get all the calcium we need from plants and have no need of calcium from milk. As I explained in an earlier blog, Osteoporosis is a not a disease of lack of calcium but a disease of excess protein (the cause of so much disease in the US..excess protein, specifically animal protein as opposed to plant protein)