Evaluating your likely current (and near future) state of health means taking into account the risk factors — such as amount of dairy product consumption — that affect you. Our medical diagnosis tool, The Analyst™, identifies major risk factors by asking the right questions.
How often do you consume dairy (cheese/cream/milk-based) products?
Possible responses:→ Never / don't know
→ Once per week or less
→ 2-6 times per week
→ Some every day
→ A lot / more than once daily
October 2014: Research at Uppsala University in Sweden and published in the British Medical Journal followed the diets and lifestyles of two large groups of men and women over a number of years and found that milk consumption can increase the risk of dying prematurely.
In women, the study found no reduction in bone fracture risk with higher milk consumption, but those who drank more than three glasses of milk a day had a higher risk of early death than women who drank less than one glass a day. Men also had a higher risk of death with higher milk consumption but this was less pronounced than in women.
The sugars lactose and galactose that are found in milk can increase oxidative stress and chronic inflammation in the body – both of which are major causes of serious and chronic diseases.
In contrast, a high intake of fermented milk products such as yoghurt was associated with lower rates of mortality and fracture, particularly in women.
Johne's disease (paratuberculosis) is an infection that cows pass on to humans as irritable bowel syndrome. It has no cure and costs dairy producers over $1.5 billion each year [Source: USDA]. The bacterium Mycobacterium avium paratuberculosis (MAP) that causes Johne's is not killed by pasteurization and is passed onto consumers in milk, cheese and ice cream. Forty million Americans have irritable bowels and over 500,000 have gone on to develop Crohn's disease.
"Mycobacterium paratuberculosis RNA was found in 100% of Crohn's disease patients, compared with 0% of controls." [Mishina, Proceedings National Academy of Sciences USA: 93: September, 1996]
The bacterium (MAP) does not cause tuberculosis in humans, but there is growing evidence linking it to Crohn's disease. British tests, released in January 2000, showed that Mycobacterium paratuberculosis can survive pasteurization, prompting the USDA to re-examine 1999 tests that showed pasteurization kills it.
August 5th, 2003, London: British scientists have found a link between Crohn's disease and MAP. Professor John Hermon-Taylor and his team at St George's Hospital Medical School in London said they had detected MAP bacteria in 92% of patients with Crohn's disease, but in only 26% of patients in a control group.
"The rate of detection of MAP in individuals with Crohn's disease is highly significant and implicates this pathogen in disease causation," they said in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology. They called for Crohn's to be made a reportable disease, for more stringent milk pasteurization, for tests for MAP in dairy herds, and procedures for reducing MAP infection on farms.
Hermon-Taylor said an unexpected finding of the research showed that patients suffering from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) may also be infected with MAP. "In animals, MAP inflames the nerves of the gut," he said. "Recent work from Sweden shows that people with IBS also have inflamed gut nerves. There is a real chance that the MAP bug may be inflaming people's gut nerves and causing IBS."
Johne's disease is an infection that cows pass on to humans as irritable bowel syndrome. Johne's disease has no cure and costs dairy producers over $1.5 billion each year [Source: USDA]. The bacterium, Mycobacterium avium paratuberculosis (MAP) causing Johne's is not killed by pasteurization and is passed onto consumers in milk, cheese and ice cream.
The International Journal of Cancer (2004 Jun 10; 110;2: pp.271-7) contains one of the largest studies ever (80,326 participants), which links the consumption of milk and dairy products to increased risk of ovarian cancer. The researchers determined that each 11gm increase in daily milk sugar consumption (the amount contained in one glass of milk) resulted in a 20% increase in the risk of serious cancers, with skim milk and low-fat milk containing higher amounts of lactose than whole milk.
In 1999, the American Journal of Epidemiology (Volume 150) reported: "Poor absorption of lactose may more than double the risk of ovarian cancer in women."
The British journal Lancet (1989, Volume 2) reported: "Galactose is linked both to ovarian cancer and infertility... women who consume dairy products on a regular basis have triple the risk of ovarian cancer than other women."
In October of 2003, the largest study on diet and testicular cancer ever conducted was published, studying the diets of hundreds of cancer victims. Previously there was little data on dietary risk factors for this dreaded disease. This study found that by far the strongest dietary risk factor associated with testicular cancer was the consumption of cheese. Those men that ate the most cheese were almost 90% more likely to develop cancer of the testicles. The investigators guessed that it may be the hormones in milk and dairy that were to blame. [International Journal of Cancer 106 (2003): p.934]
Consumers of dairy products generally receive sufficient iodine due to the use of iodine-containing disinfectants for cleaning dairy equipment, which leach into the milk.