The Dairy Connection

So we’ve gone from unseasonably cold and much too rainy to, “Dear God, will you please turn down the thermostat and do something about this humidity?” all over night.  Luckily the weather people are saying my prayer should be answered by tomorrow.

But now let’s talk about milk, shall we?  And cheese and beef, while we’re at it.

These have nothing to do with the weather, by the way.

I have a friend here in Canada South whose little boy was very recently diagnosed with Crohn’s disease.  I have another friend, back home, whose teenage son was also recently diagnosed with Crohn’s.  But let’s talk about the first friend, the one here in Canada South, and her son, and milk.

According to the pediatric gastroenterologist that the first friend’s son is seeing, Crohn’s disease is very much on the rise in our country.  Really, what disease isn’t these days?  Anyway, according to my friend, the good doctor (or maybe it was just her independent research?  I don’t remember) told her that Crohn’s has increased in the last 100 years by 4000%.  No, I didn’t not put too many zeros on that number.

While he did say that nobody knows for sure what causes Crohn’s, the gastro doc said the current theory is that it is triggered by a reaction to mycobacterium avium paratuberculosis bacteria.  After being diagnosed with Crohn’s, her son was tested for these bacteria and the test came back positive. I know my second friend’s son was also tested for tuberculosis  (I can only assume the same type), but I don’t know how those tests came back.

So, my understanding from talking to my first friend (I haven’t done any research on my own yet) is that the bacteria are found in one of every three gallons of milk we buy in America.  They are also found in meat and cheese, but these are safer as long as they are melted/cooked, because the heat kills the bacteria.  The bacteria do survive the pasteurization process, but could be killed by it if the milk were to undergo the process for a little longer than it currently does.  Goat products are apparently no safer, as the bacteria are also found in goats and deer.  Yes, deer, though I’ve never known anyone to consume deer milk or cheese.

So, you know, wow.  Sure, it’s only a theory at this point, and the theory also includes the caveat that those who are genetically predisposed to autoimmune diseases are more susceptible, but wow.  And?  Is there anybody left in the US who doesn’t have a history of autoimmune disease in their family?

I’ve already been wary of dairy for years.  Literally, for years.  But, like most Americans, I’ve let my judgment be swayed by the fear mongering hype that without dairy my children’s bones would crumble to dust and their teeth would melt out of their mouths.  This, even though I know there are other good sources of calcium, vegetable sources of calcium, to be had.  I think the possible link with Crohn’s disease is the final straw for me.

Tewt the Newt is on the lookout for studies funded by the USDA and the National Dairy Council which will irrevocably disprove the theory connecting cows and Crohn’s.  *snort*

4 thoughts on “The Dairy Connection

  1. Google “crohn’s worms” and “colitis worms” and see what you come up with. One research facility in Iowa has about eliminated those diseases in their area with their unorthodox treatment. The more sterile the environment, the more opportunities for infections and diseases – send the kids out to play in the dirt.


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