Got milk?

So what about dairy?

Conflicting theories about how good and bad dairy is for you arises between Ayurvedic Medicine and Chinese Medicine. No wonder the cow is sacred in India. The benefits of milk products are numerous. Milk is rich and nourishing. It provides medicines such as colostrum, which helps heal the gut, moderates the immune system, increases natural NK (natural killer cells), increases strength and stamina, prevents the absorption of toxins and more. Cetyl-myristoleate is an adaptogenic immune modulator and works to reduce inflammation, acting upon the memory T-cells reducing autoimmune processes. “SBI Protect” or Serum derived bovine immunoglobulin concentrate. It helps reduce the autoimmune reactions in Crohn’s disease, leaky gut, IBS and other digestive inflammatory diseases. I carry these products at my office.

So from the cow’s milk we are able to derive some powerful medicines. In Ayurveda some remedies are taken with milk to calm and nourish. We do know milk is filled with rich proteins and fats and does nourish and nurture the body mind. Some scientists believe milk is addictive and acts like a drug with its calming and sedative actions. Any one for warm milk before bed? Hot chocolate? or cookies with milk? Milk has always been a comfort food. And why not? It comes from the Mother glands of the cow..the breasts..It is the essence of Mother love contained in milk.

But we Americans often take too much of a good thing. Many of us grow up drinking milk daily in school while eating many other rich foods. Sooner or later that richness turns against us being too much fat and protein for us to digest easily or effectively. This is when milk starts acting like an allergen creating phlegm, mucous, an inflammation. Milk is one of the biggest culprits in creating the symptoms of allergies, asthma, cough, phlegm, mucous and fatty cysts, gall bladder troubles, migraine headaches, certain types of infertility and contributes to some chronic diseases.

Chinese medicine in general is in favor of eating meat to build the blood. Ayurveda often recommends eating more vegetarian foods. So, I recommend reducing and eliminating dairy to eliminate “inphlegmation” – that’s my word…and if you have any of the previously listed ailments. I recommend eliminating dairy- all milk, cheese, yogurt, butter, and keifer for 8 weeks and see how your symptoms change. Goat’s milk is not as inflammatory as cow’s milk and can be a good substitute for people wanting to eat a little cheese or dairy. It is not as inflammatory. I believe it is 75% of the world’s population loses its ability to digest milk after the breast feeding stage. This sets many of us up for problems with digestion. Milk is a fabulous food in small amounts or moderation. The by products of milk are extensive and we should appreciate it’s gifts.

The other modern problem for dairy consumers is that milk absorbs fat soluble toxins and radiation. It bio-accumulates every toxin it comes across in the feed, water, grass and air. And that is true for most of us. So the more animal products we eat the more toxins we accumulate. It is best to eat organic of course. This will reduce the toxic load.

Many people have become more aware of animal welfare and factory farming. I agree that humane animal practices should be applied to animal husbandry, meaning fair and respectful farming practices honoring our animal brothers and sisters with love and a good life.

One more thorny issue in our dietary choices dilemma is the global warming and sustainability challenge. Many people believe if we reduce our meat and dairy consumption it will reduce our impact on the Earth’s resources and climate.

Oh what to eat? What to eat? It is the constant dilemma. I believe it is essential to have pure unadulterated food available. This is a challenge as we see so many foods contaminated with processing, chemicals, GMO’s and toxins of various sorts.

I have been on many dietary excursions in my life. I have been a vegetarian and macrobiotic. I have been on paleo type diets, no and low carb diets, anti – yeast diets, and all of them worked for me at the time. I have fasted, learned to cook traditional meat focused dishes . I have studied all kinds of international cooking and I see that all kinds of diets work for people depending on their lifestyle, age, activity level and predisposition. I do believe all foods work and all diets can work for people depending on who they are. I do believe food is a medicine and an integral part of our connection to our world. Food is practical and political and spiritual. We are all connected. What ever you choose to eat, eat wisely and mindfully. If you have any health symptoms consider food as your medicine. If you don’t know what to eat, seek out someone who can help you figure out what works best for your condition and constitution. Learn to cook and take the time to nurture and nourish yourself. Give Thanks!.. for good food!

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