Kids who drink raw milk have less asthma, allergies

NEW YORK Tue Sep 13, 2011 5:16pm EDT

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NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Children who drink raw milk are less likely to develop asthma and allergies than those who stick to the safer pasteurized version, according to a large European study.

Although the study isn't ironclad proof that the effects can be chalked up to raw milk itself, researchers believe certain milk proteins that are destroyed by heat could be helpful to children's developing immune systems.

They warn, however, that parents shouldn't start giving their kids raw milk.

"The consumption of raw milk is a double-edged sword," Georg Loss, a researcher with the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute in Basel who worked on the study, told Reuters Health by email.

"On the one side it is protective for the development of asthma and allergies but on the other side it may imply serious health risks due to harmful microorganisms."

Raw milk proponents claim the drink has several health benefits -- among them reducing asthma symptoms -- that aren't found in the pasteurized milk sold in most grocery stores.

But there is little evidence for their claims, according to U.S. government researchers who say consumption of unpasteurized milk, cheese and yogurt can be dangerous.

Last year, for example, scientists from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention linked raw milk to a 2008 outbreak of E. coli in Connecticut that landed four people in the hospital with life-threatening illnesses.

The agency repeated its warning after learning of the current new study, which is published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

"From CDC's perspective, raw milk can carry harmful bacteria and other germs that can cause severe illness and even death," researcher Hannah Gould said in an email to Reuters Health. "While it is possible to get foodborne illnesses from many different foods, raw milk is one of the riskiest of all."

Although earlier studies have found less asthma and allergies among kids who drink raw milk, the new work is the first to point to the exact components in the milk that might be protective.

Loss and his colleagues tapped into a large survey in which parents answered questions about their children's milk consumption. The researchers also collected 800 milk samples from the participants' households.

Compared with kids who only drank store-bought milk, those who drank raw milk had a 41-percent reduction in their odds of developing asthma. They were also only about half as likely to develop hay fever -- even after accounting for other factors that might be relevant.

On the other hand, those who drank boiled farm milk had no less asthma than those who drank store milk.

The protective effect was linked to so-called whey proteins in the milk, such as BSA and alpha-lactalbumin.

"Pasteurization remains an effective tool to inactivate harmful microorganisms but may simultaneously destroy whey proteins," said Loss. "The results may give rise to technological developments aiming to destroy harmful microorganisms but preserving beneficial components of milk. The ultimate aim is to use a safe and protective milk for prevention of asthma."

In the U.S., more than seven percent of adults and even more kids have asthma, causing millions of visits to emergency rooms and doctors' offices every year.

SOURCE: Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, online August 29, 2011.

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Comments (2)
Andy21 wrote:
The FDA says that their is no such thing as minerals vitamins supplements and food that provides health benifits. The FDA says we have no rights to choose what food we eat or what food we feed our children. The FDA says “oh my god, 4 people got ecoli from raw milk OH MY GOD ! its so dangourous !! ahhh Raw milk is with the devil” Ahhh !!!! heres some facts for you.

at least 50-100 people die in the US each year from Bee Stings
at least 7-12 people die in the US each year from Snake Bites
over 40000 Americans die in car accidents each year
over 443000 Ameicans die from smoking each year.

Even with the dangers that are all around us as part of life on Planet Earth in the Milky Way Galaxy, we still do not consent to becoming cyborg robots who follow orders from out masters and expect the New World Order depopulation eugenics phrama corporate governments make us safe. They cant keep us safe. It is not thier job to keep us safe from EVERYTHING. Why do we let their tyranny rule ? It is tyranny built on submission and the accepetance of INSANITY. We need to restore liberty, restore our health. It has been PROVEN time and time again that everything the NEW WORLD ORDER does is anti-health, anti-life and tyrannical. When big pharma and big corporations have Ecoli and samonella outbreaks constantly, no big deal they just let them have waivers and have “recalls”, and pay little “fines”. But 1-4 people get sick for some reason in connection with raw food and its “unsafe”. Who are they tyring to kid? This is the same NWO federal goverment who once had doctors saying smoking was harmless. THEY KNOW WHAT THEY ARE DOING TO US. THEY LAUGH AT US and see us as thier CHATTLE. When will people understand and take this to the leaders and MAKE THEM respond to this and start restoring LIBERTY !. We need more people like Ron Paul. Ron Paul can restore America !

Sep 18, 2011 7:51pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
jhkimura wrote:
This is a scare article. The source publication did indicate that BOILED milk is more allergenic BUT milk heated to a temperature common for pasteurization was NOT. Pasteurized milk is not boiled!

Sep 20, 2011 7:36pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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