Raw milk for my 20 month old? Safe? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 21 Old 04-14-2012, 12:12 AM - Thread Starter
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I live in So Cal and have access to Organic Pastures Raw Milk from a co op or my local health food store. My 20 month old is still nursing but I don't think my supply is enough for him. I have my own health issues (Gastritis and GERD) which make it hard for me to eat enough to be in perfect health. I don't eat enough calories to support my milk supply, although I try really hard. I have friends who give their kids/babies raw milk from the same source. Although while researching, I read the Organic Pastures has had 2 incidents of E. Coli sickening children, one was proven to be tied to their farm from what I read and this was just this last fall. That kinda freaks me out even though I know you could get sick from other things just as well. I would like some advice on this, I tend to worry too much as it is but I really don't want to give him "dead milk" to supplement my low supply. Thanks.

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#2 of 21 Old 04-14-2012, 02:58 PM
 
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We're a Raw Milk family and it's made a big difference in our family's health. Find a good, reliable source is my advice. 

 

I would try and find raw goat's milk first. It's much closer to human breast milk than cow's milk and I prefer the taste to goat over cow's milk, easily...as does my son. It's sweeter, has a  higher butterfat content, and is very creamy. It's like drinking cream, just delicious.

 

I would call the dairy farm you mentioned and ask direct but polite questions. Sometimes the media misrepresents things and this is an election year.......

 

We're not in your state but we use local farmers for our goat and cow's milk. One farmer has 5-6 goats and the other has 6 milk cows. I prefer smaller farms because it's typically the farmer himself/herself that does all the work. 

 

Hope that helps. 

 

 

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#3 of 21 Old 04-14-2012, 04:11 PM
 
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There are sort of two ways of looking at this: one is that your son has been drinking "raw" milk from the very beginning... from you! Of course, it's much safer because it's straight from the tap instead of bottled and kept for a few days before being consumed.

 

Personally, I drink the pasteurized stuff when it's from a cow. I like that it is safer and regulated, and it's not nutrient-free or anything. It still has that useful mix of carbs, protein, and fat. (Or no fat if you drink skim.)

 

Still, there are many that say that the health benefits of drinking unpastuerized milk outweigh the risks. Some say that it still has useful antibodies and enzymes, though your son is still getting that from you anyway if you are still nursing him.

 

Tough call.

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#4 of 21 Old 04-14-2012, 08:59 PM
 
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Thats an easy one IMO, I would (and do) give raw milk without hesitation.  there's some good info in this video!  http://nourishedkitchen.com/mark-mcafee-raw-milk-interview/

Those who have not done their research think that pasturized milk is regulated and all that, when in reality it is not, it is pasturized and never tested to see if all the "bad" bacteria was killed or not, and there have been outbreaks from pasturized milk more than raw!  You dont hear about that in the news do you?  Nope, but the small raw milk farmer is an easy target with no money to pay out to keep them out of the public eye.

Anyway, raw milk is natural, and as long as the animal is pastured (not cooped up in a nasty overcrowded barn all day like the cows who produce the stores pasturized milk are), it is safe, and remember you are supporting humane practices by buying pasture fed milk, and not supporting animal confiment like the store bought(when I say store bought I mean like Walmart) milk.  Organic pastures does test every batch of milk for bad bacteria I know.  Pasturized milk does not contain most of the beneficial enzymes or phosphorus I know, there are others too that are destroyed I dont recall all of them though.  I would also check out mercola.com and westonaprice.org and research on those sites.

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#5 of 21 Old 04-15-2012, 05:14 AM
 
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I believe, in order to be an informed consumer, you need to learn about the proposed benefits and real risks of raw milk.

In the spirit of transparency, I used to drink and feed my children raw milk from Organic Pastures (OPDC) even as short of a time ago as August 2011. I made raw milk kefir when I was pregnant with my son. Interestingly, raw milk kefir was to blame for the two most sickened kids in the 2011 OPDC e.coli outbreak. By sickened i mean they developed HUS, which renders their kidneys unfunctional and because of our midern emergency medicine, they survive through dialysis, ventilation, etc etc etc A majority of HUS kids go on to further medical problems as they age and could quite possibly need a kidney transplant one day.

This is because ecoli 0157:H7 proliferates at room temperature and no amount of beneficial bacteria can match its destructiveness. The Weston A Price Foundation (WAPF) is the most vocal and organized voice in support of raw milk. WAPF recommends making a raw milk formula with raw milk kefir for babies that are in your predicament, where the mothers milk supply is not adequate or drops of for all the variable reasons.

I learned about the real dangers of raw milk at around the time of the last OPDC raw milk outbreak. Raw milk is a vector for e.coli 0157:H7, Campylobacter, listeria and salmonella for starters. The raw milk crowd will tell you that raw milk is safer than pasteurized milk, and is more beneficial. After taking time and doing my own research, the benefits are overblown and simply not supported by enough research. The real risks are not explained carefully, or are significantly played down. In the case of OPDC, the raw milk crowd blatantly lied about the 2006 ecoli outbreak, which hurt the victims even more.

I feel it is every mothers right to make an informed decision. Knowing the facts about the benefits and risks is imperative. To counter what is, in my opinion, raw milk propaganda, I leave you with these resources:
http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/04/is-the-foundation-of-good-health-found-in-a-bottle-of-raw-milk/
http://www.realrawmilkfacts.com/

I realize my opinion is not popular in the "real food" or WAPF community. Please don't eat me! eat.gif
I have a lot of love for real food! I'm going to a fundraiser for a local farm tomorrow to hear Joel Salatin of Polyface Farm speak!
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There are alternatives: Strauss milk, and I've even heard St. Benoit has a good grassfed, gently pasteurized milk.

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#6 of 21 Old 04-15-2012, 06:45 AM
 
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I would double check the belief that OPDC tests every batch of milk.  They have around 400 cows and milk twice a day.  Last time I checked their website they tested about twice a week—that’s 8 times a month.  That means on average 32 days of the month the milk is not tested. 

 

I’d do a little research on all the pathogens that can be found in raw milk and all the illnesses these pathogens can cause before I would make the choice to give my child raw milk.  I wish I would have known this information before I made the choice to give my son raw milk. My choice almost killed my son.  Watch the videos on www.realrawmilkfacts.com before you make your choice. 

 

You can’t make an informed decision if you don’t know both the pros and cons of raw milk consumption.

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#7 of 21 Old 04-15-2012, 02:52 PM
 
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OP, you should repost in Traditional Foods.  And as far as Mary Martin, that person's only post is the above one, I wouldnt trust it, that could be anyone, and obvisouly they are just trying to scare you for whatever reason, who knows.

I have been drinking raw milk for years, DH has been drinking it since he was a kid, and DD has been drinking it almost a year, never have we had any sort of illness from it.  We also make kefir with it, again, no problems.  We've always gotten it from local farms with 1 or 2 cows or goats, its never been tested, we've never had problems.]

 

Its everyones choice obviously, but yes, inform yourself.  Read info from both those who are for and against it.  Interestingly this http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/04/15/inhumane-treatment-on-dairy-cows.aspx?e_cid=20120415_SNL_Art_1  is the information that was in my mercola newsletter today.   Besides exposing the reality of conventional dairy "farms", be sure to read under the headings "Raw Milk may be the Solution for You AND the Cows"   Also check out the info under the heading "Additional Raw Milk Resources"

 

Obvisouly, and as mentioned in this article, Raw, unpasteurized milk from CAFOs would be dangerous to consume.  The cows must be in natural living conditions, and eating their natural diet.

 

Also see:

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2003/03/26/pasteurized-milk-part-one.aspx

http://rawmilkinstitute.net/who-are-you/consumer/

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#8 of 21 Old 04-15-2012, 04:23 PM
 
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Kristicakes06 has it right. Raw milk can carry E.coli 0157:H7, Campylobacter, listeria and salmonella. Please take some time to look up every one of those pathogens/infectious diseases and read about what damage they can cause. A good source for information is cdc.gov.

 

I'm sure that there are people who drink raw milk and who have never gotten sick. But think about it: If your child drinks contaminated milk, he or she could become sick with something that causes bloody diarrhea, acute renal failure or Guillain-Barré syndrome (40% of cases in US attributed to Campylobacter infections), or death. Do you want your child on dialysis for life? Paralyzed? Read about these diseases, they are terrible.

 

It's not just drinking contaminated milk: children can also get sick just from touching an animal. Encourage your child to thoroughly wash their hands after visiting any petting zoo or a farm. Show them how to wash their hands properly (redcross.org has some excellent tips for parents.) Even pets, e.g. leopard geckos or turtles, can harbor salmonella germs.

 

Why do I care?

 

Family history. In March, 1880, my Norwegian immigrant great-grandfather died from tuberculosis at the age of 45. One month later, his daughter died from TB as well. She was 9. They both caught tuberculosis from the cows in the family dairy herd in Minnesota. In 1885, one of their cousins died from TB, at the age of 15. Her chore on the family farm, in Wisconsin, was to milk the cows. The spread of TB from cows to people was the primary reason that strict standards were developed for processing milk.

 

I live in Oregon. Right now, there is an outbreak of E.coli here traced to raw milk. Even if they survive, they will have kidney problems all of their lives. Here's a story on the situation here: http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/04/oregon-investigating-e-coli-outbreak-possibly-linked-to-raw-milk/

 

My husband is a pediatric surgeon with 35 years of experience. He rarely calls me from the hospital, but he did two days ago when he learned about the outbreak linked to raw milk/cows. He has seen what happens to kids who are sick with E. coli infections. Renal failure and death are not uncommon. He called me because our daughter just bought a calf as a 4-H project. You can bet I immediately called the other 4-H moms, and made sure that there's a sink with hot water and soap in the barn.

 

This is my first post on this blog. I had to say something because some of the comments seem uninformed. I just feel it's important to protect our children and ask that you please join me in spreading the word. Thank you.

 

 

 

 

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#9 of 21 Old 04-16-2012, 05:54 AM
 
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crimsonandclover-

I have removed your posts. We all have had one post at one time or another, and everyone deserves to be given the benifit of the doubt.  Posting in this manner does not contribute to a comfortable and respectful environment.

 

serenbat- I only removed your post, since it was addressing the removed post.  Sorry about that.


 
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#10 of 21 Old 04-16-2012, 08:32 AM
 
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There has been a recent post in TF section of questioning the drinking of raw milk (within the past few months).

 

A mother and her children (a mothering member with lots of post) was sicken by the recent outbreak in PA (it did effect other states)- if you want to read information - these are two sections to start at (PA tribe section and as well as in MD tribe section). The case that effected so many in PA and surrounding states is NOT just because it was a small farmer being attacked, it was because there were documented cases of illness, some severe. 

 

This is NOT anti but real accounts, real thread here on this board.


 

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#11 of 21 Old 04-16-2012, 05:23 PM
 
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I am not questioning that real milk occasionally can and does make people sick.  I was actually just SECONDING another poster's comment about the one post deal, (one that is still posted, btw.)  If it is an actual person contributing their information, that is fine.  I only bring this up because they have linked to the website www.realrawmilkfoods.com and that raised my suspicions since I have seen some people "witchhunt" small milk farmers from that website.  I do not mean any disrespect to anyone's opinion or experience.

 

Anyways, I have personally become very sick from drinking pasteurized milk as a teenager - there was an outbreak and a dozen other people became sick as well.  They eventually pulled the milk off the shelves.  For what it's worth, I DO think that there is a slightly larger risk from drinking raw milk.  From my research, I personally think the benefits outweigh the risk.  My DH can't drink any dairy because of lactose intolerance, but the raw stuff is not a problem. Just my two cents.

 

Someone else mentioned the St. Benoit milk, which is non-homogenized and vat pasteurized at a lower temperature.  For people who don't feel safe drinking raw milk, perhaps there is middle ground?

 

I have also read that the homogenization process is more destructive to the milk that pasteurizing because it destroys the actual cell structure.  I"m sure there's more info out there somewhere.

 

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#12 of 21 Old 04-16-2012, 05:44 PM
 
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Personally, I wouldn't do it, especially for a toddler. There were a number of cases of E.coli in our state recently. (http://www.oregonlive.com/health/index.ssf/2012/04/another_ecoli_infection_traced.html) 3 children were hospitalized with acute kidney failure, including one toddler. Toddlers are particularly at risk for E. coli, and the strain that's often found in raw milk is particularly virulent.
 


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#13 of 21 Old 04-16-2012, 06:09 PM
 
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I heard this directly from a raw milk farmer in my state (where we had a very bad outbreak)- that the one recently in question occurred because of cross contamination with animal feces and your chances of having it with pasteurized milk is far less likely

 

Also with pasteurized milk sickness you are less likely to be as sick as when you get camplylobacter from raw milk.

 

http://www.foodsafetynews.com this site lists all types of food related issues, http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/04/on-raw-milk-and-why-were-seeing-so-many-outbreaks/

OP you may want to investigate the dealer's history

 

LynnS6 your link opened up blank but there is a recent story on the site I posted - http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/04/oregon-confirms-fifth-e-coli-case-linked-to-raw-milk/


 

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I certainly believe that milk can become contaminated from cross-contamination, which is why I actually go and watch how they handle their milk occasionally.  If the milk is pasturized after cross-contamination occurs then yes it will kill the bad bacteria.  What you've got to realize is that e. coli exists in the animals gut, not their milk.  And it is passed through their feces, and if the feces come into contact with the milk then yea, e. coli in the milk.  Humans have e.coli in our guts/feces as well, but I personally have never heard of a baby becoming sick from e. coli in breastmilk.  Now, if I were to use the bathroom, not wash my hands, go express my breastmilk, then feed it to my child from a bottle, then it is certainly possible that they could become infected with e. coli.  

I also agree that homogenization is totally unnecessary and destroys the milk, I would never drink homogenized milk.  I know there is some milk out there that is non-homogenized and minimum temp vat pasturized.  Dont forget about goats milk too which is not homogenized ever that I know of.

I just mentioned the 1 post thing becaue I have seen people get on online forums with a special interest, post something strongly for or against what is being discussed, and never be seen again on the forum.  Like the above person mention her child nearly dying, just sounds like shes trying to scare the OP.

And I too have heard of outbreaks from pasturized milk!  For sure.  And deaths from it as well.  I havent heard that these are less severe than illness from raw milk however.  Its my opinion that raw milk is perfectly safe and much more nuritious than pasturized as long as it comes from a clean source that is careful with it and from animals that are on an open pasture and allowed to feed on the grass.  This is my opinion based on the research that I have done, as well as from my own experiences.

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#15 of 21 Old 04-17-2012, 04:26 AM
 
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Quote:
And I too have heard of outbreaks from pasturized milk!  For sure.  And deaths from it as well.

 

 

I hear this all the time- can you provide some proof here?

 

 

IF you do go by this (and if you don't I would love to see what you are comparing it to) - the number of outbreaks are more with raw

http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/02/cdc-raw-milk-much-more-likely-to-cause-illness/

 

Since January 2007, the end of the study's review window, there have been at least 56 additional foodborne illness outbreaks associated with raw milk. Between 2010 and 2011, raw dairy products were linked to 21 outbreaks and 201 illnesses, while pasteurized dairy products caused two outbreaks and 39 illnesses. 

 

and BTW I do know of a death (it was in extended family caused by raw- it wasn't recent but it did happen) saying it was just to scare isn't always the case-I also know of sever illness as well related to raw but I don't see the facts lining up as true the pasteurized is the harm others like you are claiming, if so where is this proof? Where are these deaths?

 


 

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#16 of 21 Old 04-17-2012, 10:15 AM
 
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Thing is, anything you eat/drink/do carries some level of risk. You have to decide whether the benefits outweight the risks. In the case of raw milk, I think the picture is pretty clear that they do not. Any potential benefit pales in comparison to the risk of contamination and illness, in my opinion.

 

If you don't want to drink pasteurized milk, I would find another, safer source of fat, protein, vitamins, or whatever it is you're hoping to get out of raw milk.

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#17 of 21 Old 04-17-2012, 01:00 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by serenbat View Post

 

 

 

 

 

 

I hear this all the time- can you provide some proof here?

 

 

IF you do go by this (and if you don't I would love to see what you are comparing it to) - the number of outbreaks are more with raw

http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2012/02/cdc-raw-milk-much-more-likely-to-cause-illness/

 

Since January 2007, the end of the study's review window, there have been at least 56 additional foodborne illness outbreaks associated with raw milk. Between 2010 and 2011, raw dairy products were linked to 21 outbreaks and 201 illnesses, while pasteurized dairy products caused two outbreaks and 39 illnesses. 

 

and BTW I do know of a death (it was in extended family caused by raw- it wasn't recent but it did happen) saying it was just to scare isn't always the case-I also know of sever illness as well related to raw but I don't see the facts lining up as true the pasteurized is the harm others like you are claiming, if so where is this proof? Where are these deaths?

 

 

Proof of death from pasteurized milk:
 

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/22561188/ns/health-diet_and_nutrition/t/toxic-milk-blamed-deaths-miscarriage/#.T43Lou2msrw

 

It was a simple google search. Now try to find one about raw milk. Not an anecdotal story about something that happened 100 years ago, but a recent (last 20 years or so) death. It's not as simple as safe vs. not safe.


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#18 of 21 Old 04-18-2012, 11:28 AM
 
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I'm not going to jump on the bandwagon of debate here. 

 

Simple fact is that my little guy (30 mos) does get raw milk.  But, I do not buy OP milk, I get mine direct from a farmer through our cow share.  He only has 6 cows, and is fastidious in how the milk is handled.  During Fukushima he was also having his milk regularly tested (for radiation) and publishing the results to all the owners so we could decide whether or not to drink.  He plowed under all his fields and bought safe fodder until after the worst of the fall-out had passed.  And he packs it in glass, not plastic.  Whereas when I used to buy OP milk, I'd be lucky if it kept a week in my fridge, I've kept this fresh milk in my fridge for 3 weeks without it turning.  I started offering the milk to my DS around 18 mos, but he didn't actually start drinking it until around 26 mos, but DH and I have been drinking it for over a year now without any issue. 

 

I plain just don't trust most supermarket milk.  I'd much rather buy it direct (I can get OP and Strauss direct at our farmer's market, no supermarket involved - and I tend to buy Strauss if I'm running short on fresh milk).  I do have a good friend whose kids drink Claravale raw milk, which they prefer over OP.  Older child is 4, younger is 18 mos. 

 

Ultimately, you have to decide who/what you're going to trust for yourself.  None of us can make that decision for you. 

 

 


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#19 of 21 Old 04-18-2012, 10:29 PM
 
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You also should consider how the cows are treated, like the mercola link I posted earlier.  If they are abused, living in filthy conditions and given antibiotics and hormones, I would not buy it (pasturized or raw) just because I dont want to support those practices.

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#20 of 21 Old 04-21-2012, 10:40 PM
 
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Ooh, I just came across this!  http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/10/5/03-0484_article.htm  be sure to click "table" on the right as well :)

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#21 of 21 Old 05-02-2012, 03:41 PM
 
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Organic Pastures supplements with grain. And ecoli in a toddler is a very very serious condition. I wouldn't personally risk it. I've met the owner many times and I respect his methods but cows are dirty animals and fecal contamination is going to happen and *does happen* every year with raw milk.  I adore their cream (when not pregnant or nursing) but I wouldn't give it to kids. I like kidneys and livers.

 

As for taste, I've heard people say they prefer Cravale.

 

You might try Organic Vally  new "grass milk" available at some of the larger Whole Foods. We've really enjoyed it lately and my kids seem to prefer it to our Clover/Organic Valley choices in the past. Totally grass fed, probably seasonal as is their grass fed butter.  http://www.organicvalley.coop/products/milk/grassmilk/  Neither of my kids have drunk cow's milk in an significant way but they do really seem to prefer this milk.

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