I have always taught my girls that they should never judge a person by what’s on the outside, because its what’s on the inside that counts. And now, apparently, that applies to milk, too. Who knew?
Years ago, I began giving my daughters organic milk because of concerns over bovine growth hormone used to stimulate milk production on conventional dairy farms and the effects that it could have on growing children. I am absolutely terrified of precocious puberty.
To be certified “USDA Organic” the synthetic hormone recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBHG) cannot have been given to the cows. RGBH is also known for making cows sick and is associated with an increased risk in breast cancer, colon cancer and prostate cancer in humans. The additive has been banned in many countries. Aside from rBGH, conventional milk cows are also exposed to antibiotics and pesticides, both which are forbidden to be used when certified organic.
Unfortunately, organic milk costs quite a bit more than conventional milk. Some people go on vacations; we buy organic milk. Where I live, it costs about double the price of conventional milk. It is expensive. There is no denying it.
Yet, there are some reasons to consider shelling out for organic. For one, organic milk has a longer shelf life over conventional milk. Most brands of organic milk are sterilized at higher temperatures and can be kept up to two months. Conventionally pasteurized milk is only heated to 165 degrees F and has a considerably shorter shelf life. So, if your kids don’t drink two gallons a week, in the long run, organic milk could actually save you money.
More food for thought comes from a new study that says there is more heart-healthy acids and protein in organic milk than conventional milk. This is thanks in part to the grass diet that most organic cows are fed. Cows who are corn fed produce milk that is higher in omega-6 fatty acids. It boils down to simple math; organic milk’s ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids is lower than in conventional milk.
What does that mean for you and your children aside for paying double for your milk?
It means that conventional milk has been linked to heart disease, cancer, inflammation and autoimmune diseases because our stomach converts omega-6s into arachidonic acid, which causes inflammation while omega-3s anti-inflammatory properties help counterbalance the inflammation.
If the cost of organic milk is just too much, the study recommends that you should be drinking whole conventional milk versus conventional skim milk because it retains 50 percent more of the heart-healthy acids. So, put down that skim milk. In terms of what’s really healthy, it’s the fats that you can’t get from the slimmed down version when sipping on the conventional varieties.
Do you think that organic milk is worth the price?