Perhaps we should steer clear of cow's milk

November 8, 2013

The Cape Gazette readers should be grateful to Dr. Uday Jani for his thorough analysis of the scientific literature on breast cancer and his recommendations for optimal breast cancer prevention practices that appeared in the Cape Gazette in two parts in October.

However, there is one aspect of his column titled "Environmental toxin exposure and breast cancer risk" that I take exception with.

Dr. Jani in that column states "Exposures can be greatly reduced by eating organic produce and using milk from grass fed cows."

I agree that using milk from grass fed cows would "reduce" exposure to environmental toxins that are integrated into our modern dairy production facilities, but as Dr. Mark Hyman, the founder and medical director of the UltraWellness Center, columnist for the Huffington Post, and chairman of the Functional Medicine Institute puts it, "Organic cows are often milked while pregnant, producing milk that's full of hormones. In fact, the average glass of milk has 60 different hormones in it. These are anabolic hormones, which means they help you grow. But not all growth is good. You don't want to grow cancer cells."According to Dr. Hyman, "milk increases IGF-1 or insulin-like growth factor, one that is like Miracle-Gro for cancer cells."

T. Colin Campbell, PhD, a biochemist and a pioneering researcher in the investigation of the diet-cancer link, author of more than 300 research papers on the subject, featured in the documentary Forks over Knives, and coauthor, along with his son Thomas M. Campbell, of the book The China Study, and one of the lead scientists in the 1980s China-Oxford-Cornell study on diet and disease, a study described by the New York Times as "the Grand Prix of epidemiology," states in his national bestseller The China Study that the protein that consistently creates and promotes cancer is casein, which makes up 87 percent of the cow's milk protein.

The China-Oxford-Cornell study detailed in the book The China Study was the most comprehensive study of human nutrition ever conducted, and the fact that it concluded that the protein "casein, which makes up 87 percent of cow's milk protein, promoted all stages of the cancer process" should be given much weight in the forming of your own opinion on the connection between milk, casein and cancer.

Dr. Campbell goes on to say, "what type of protein did not promote cancer, even at high levels of intake? The safe proteins were from plants."

Perhaps consideration should be given to substituting soy milk, rice milk, oat milk, hemp milk or almond milk for cow's milk, all of which are readily available in our local grocery stores.

I encourage you to do your own research and form your own opinion.

Don Szczepkowski

Rehoboth Beach

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