Even at a recent Paleo/Ancestral Foods Symposium, there was disagreement on the subject of milk. One thing we ALL agree on though is sodas! Men, women, children and babies should not drink soda. The phosphorus, the chemicals, the sweeteners (“natural” or otherwise), the colors, and the caffeine all make for a dangerous brew.
On top of that, soda companies use the chemical BPA as part of the lining in the can. Almost all canned goods have BPA, and it is an Estrogen mimic and therefore a hormone disruptor. Have you noticed early menstrual cycles in girls, and breasts on boys? This is part of the reason why….
So if sodas are out, how about juice? We all know that juice is good for us, right? WRONG! Juice is a concentrated source of sugars, especially Fructose, which has been well researched to cause a myriad of health problems including obesity, allergies, irritable bowel, and many more. Whole fruit can be a treat for us, but not too much, especially for a little person. Three to five bites is about right in my opinion, regardless of your age….
OK, let’s talk MILK!
There is widespread agreement in the Naturopathic community that cow’s milk is one of the most highly allergenic “foods” we have. Disregarding for the moment the milk that comes from hormone-laced, antibiotic-pumped animals supplemented with corn and soybean feed (which makes cows sick, so they need more antibiotics), what about milk from healthy pasture-fed cows, organic or even raw?
In my DVD, The Diet For Human Beings, I address this issue, in part, by reminding us that we are all different, and that the first and best way to determine if a food is bothering you, is to completely eliminate it from your diet for 1 to 4 weeks. COMPLETELY! The longer, the better. For adults, notice ANY improvements in any area of your health, including digestion, snoring, arthritis, emotions, allergies, etc. Then challenge the food by adding it back for 3 or 4 days and see what crops up.
It may be something new, such as eczema or heartburn, or it could be the return of old symptoms. Either way, the body is telling you that inflammation has occurred and that you would be better off without that “food”.
I do think children need milk until the age of 2 or 3. Mother’s milk for sure…. But if not that, then what? Milk does contain building blocks of much of our immune system, and human milk obviously can be the perfect nutritional match for a baby. But modern cows have been selected for milk production, not for the best match to human genes and other requirements. Jersey and Guernsey cows are the best at this of all the cows.
I suggest that ALL my clients avoid regular cow’s milk and cow’s milk yogurt, ice cream and cream cheese. Some may tolerate raw Jersey milk from the farmer. Try goat milk, sheep yogurt, and believe it or not, there is a growing market in camel’s milk for babies!
The trick is to do a proper challenge and see exactly what results. With babies and children, changes in the diaper, colic, restlessness, spitting up, ear infections, and dark circles under the eyes all indicate trouble.
So stick with Spring water, or water from a reverse-osmosis filter or a Berkey filter. If you want a little splash of 100% organic fruit juice as a flavoring, that’s OK. But avoid sodas and regular cow’s milk for good. By the way, certain breeds of cow’s milk contain a lot of opiates – so kids (and adults) can literally become addicted to it. With these individuals, they’ll feel much better after they finally get off the dairy, but may have some trouble doing so. This is especially important with Autistic kids who are often highly intolerant to dairy in ANY form.