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Dairy Products: Value and Danger of Various Food Components

Nonfat milk is an excellent source of calcium, but dairy products may be harmful to many people. It may not even be natural for our species to consume dairy products, since the consumption of cow's milk is a relatively recent phenomenon among humans. Milk protein allergy occurs frequently among young children, and lactose intolerance is widespread throughout the world.

Milk sugar is broken down into two simple sugars, glucose and galactose. Galactose may not be easily metabolized, and may accumulate in certain tissues; this may contribute to cataracts. Whole-milk dairy products also carry the risk of contamination with fat-soluble pesticides, sulfa drugs, and antibiotics. Nonfat dairy products do not carry these contaminants.

Calcium can also be obtained from plant sources, including dark green, leafy vegetables, many beans, almonds, and some dried fruits.

People who do want to consume dairy products should use only skim or 1 percent milk and dairy products. Children under the age of two should consume whole milk, if they use cow's milk, although soymilk is an excellent alternative. For infants, breast milk is the wisest choice. Milk substitutes, such as soy, almond, rice, or goat's milk, are an option for anyone wanting to avoid dairy products. Goat's milk is metabolized differently from cow's milk and may be a useful substitute for individuals with lactose intolerance to cow's milk.

 

 

 

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From THE BEST ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE: WHAT WORKS? WHAT DOES NOT? by Dr. Kenneth R. Pelletier.
Copyright © 2000 by Dr. Kenneth R. Pelletier, Inc.
Reprinted by permission of Simon & Schuster, Inc., New York, New York.


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