What went wrong with dairy products? Why does milk make so many of us sick? 2

I am sure you have read all the recent stuff about ‘battery dairy farming’. As usual Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall and Jamie Oliver are getting involved. From the ‘farming’ and ‘naughty supermarkets’ angle. They seem to be very concerned with low price of milk in supermarkets and inferior quality of the product. I am with them – to a certain extent but wish they would push it a bit further. Cheap, rubbish milk is a problem. Has anyone considered what the consequences are and have been? I don’t just mean the economic or animal rights issues. What about the human rights and health aspect?

Anyone with dairy intolerance, or worse, cow’s milk protein knows it is near impossible to buy food in the supermarket that isn’t ‘sprinkled with poison’ – by that I mean, containing some cow’s milk protein in some guise.

My hunch is that the ‘milk’ changed when we were kids – I am nearly 40 so I mean about 30 years ago or more. Once upon a time, milk had cream in/sitting on it and went off after a couple of days. Now it lives forever! Apparently cows are not fed on grass anymore and we all remember the BSE thing. What if this is all part of that? If I remember rightly, that was caused by cows eating food they are not meant to eat. From what I hear they have been fed the wrong type of food again. Too scary to think of.

The other thing is that ‘milk protein’ gets on everything and I am a believer in the ‘overexposure’ theory. We have been unwittingly consuming ‘dairy’ on non-dairy foods for far too long and perhaps this is nature kicking back.

My other thought is that this really is nature kicking back. Everyone reacted to that picture of the woman breastfeeding her toddler but what if we published a picture of a child suckling a cow? And why do people pull a face at the thought of sheep’s or goats milk but find the idea of consuming ‘cow juice’ acceptable! How is it different? Surely if we were meant to rear our young on ‘animal milk’ wouldn’t it be better to feed them ‘ape’ milk? Perhaps we just shouldn’t drink it. Just a thought.

Bringing up a dairy free baby is quite a challenge. There is no support out there and zero interest from the medics. You get an appointment to see a dietitian once a year and they just ask how the baby gets his protein and calcium and if you ‘answer’ the questions correctly, you get sent away for another year.

All the articles about vitamin D deficiency in children have a link here. The dairy free child is most at risk of this condition. There is even a theory relating to vitamin D deficiency in the mother being to blame for the intolerance in the child. As ever, the parents are the problem. Thanks! Just what we need, as if us poor Mums don’t have enough to deal with and take the blame for.

I want medics to take an interest in this serious condition and properly assess it. When a new mother sees her midwife/health visitor about her ‘colicky/sicky’ baby, she feels a bit paranoid and almost guilty because she is concerned for her child and fed up with the mountains of laundry. I know I did. But thinking back, my baby was a classic case. He wasn’t just colicky. He was ill. See the link below. http://glutenfreeworks.com/blog/2009/04/20/bovine-beta-casein-enteropathy-celiac-disease-cause-villous-atrophy/

I want someone to start looking into Bovine Beta Casein Enteropathy. I believe that many cases written off as colic and ‘sicky baby’ are probably warning signs of this. Zac used to ‘oink’ like a baby pig all night after his feeds. He was so blocked up his face and nose looked swollen. He used to blast out of his nappies and woke several times a night. He developed a skin rash and was wheezy and developed hay fever at a young age. He had a permanently runny nose and the best anyone came up with was to simply write him off as –atopic, i.e. someone who is a bit intolerant to a lot of stuff!

We should have access to testing, assessment and treatment. Without it vitamin D deficiency could be the least of our worries. There are much bigger impacts on the long term health of people with these problems.

No-one has ever examined my child’s gut and I dread to think what damage was done. For the first 2 and a half years of his life he was ‘poisoned’. We couldn’t toilet train him until he was three because his brain and tummy had no time to talk. He never had proper bowel movements until he had been 100% dairy and gluten free for several months.

Since starting my blog I have come into contact with many people who have had the same problem and it is starting to look like an epidemic. We know that we have not fed our babies junk. Even the breast fed babies are having these problems. Many seem to have been born this way and we are trying to find our way as we wean them and help them to grow and thrive.

There is no provision on prescription for parents with children who are dairy ‘allergic’ or intolerant. It costs a fortune. I don’t mind. I would go without food if it meant my son could get the food he needed but it shouldn’t be this way. Aren’t we punished enough? Doesn’t this high price run the risk of making some people think it is worth giving their child the odd bit of ‘unsafe’ food just to save a few pounds.

Supermarkets and ‘free from’ food specialists don’t really consider milk allergy. If you want dairy free food, you are forced to buy the food that is also gluten free and could risk reducing your tolerance to gluten. Are the conditions related? I guess the damage to the villi in the gut is the common factor.

My son is wildly sensitive to both and everyone tells me he will grow out of it, but he has been 100% free from gluten and dairy for well over a year and his sensitivity is incredible. His tummy goes up like a balloon if accidentally eats something with a trace of gluten and he is running for the toilet if he eats anything that has so much of a sprinkle of skimmed milk powder or similar in the ingredients.

We have a mountain to climb but the Coeliacs have managed it. I want to get to the point where there is an awareness week for those with dairy issues. Does anyone want to join me? I plan to start campaigning soon. I just need a few supporters! Everyone is all over the gluten free guys, but let’s wave a flag for the dairy free folk. Now.

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2 comments

  1. I appreciate this isn’t a step everyone can make, but we keep goats for milk. I have never been able to tolerate mass produced supermarket milk. But fresh, raw goats milk is delicious, so so much better nutritionally, and best of all, no horrid stomach ache or eczema. I appreciate that doesn’t help a gluten sensitivity. My mother in law specialises in food intolerances, and she described how the gut sometimes over reacts when it is being irritate by a few things, to then reject many others, and sometimes, not always, when all the offending items have been removed, the digestive system may heal, so to speak, and be able to tolerate some of the previously intolerable items. Either way, I appreciate there are not easy or simply solutions, and what works for one does not often work for another. I have three children who have dairy allergies, amongst others, but touch wood, since we went to raw goats milk this year, it seems to be going well.

    • Hi, Thanks so much for getting in touch. Very interesting. What you have said does tie up with some other comments I have had and articles I have read. It seems that ‘raw’ and untreated dairy products are more easily tolerated. It seems that with most foods, processing is a very bad thing and although it makes things ‘last longer’ it is in fact causing a whole range of problems for the consumers. I feel that we are getting to the point where people are going to have to change their shopping habits and look back in time for the answers. Everyone did seem to be healthier when food was bought and cooked fresh every day. I know that does not sound like it will fit with so many modern lifestyles, but for anyone living and dealing with food intolerance and allergy, it is probably what you are doing more and more anyway. Most food allergies and intolerances mean that processed foods are off the table, so perhaps rather than being a nuisance to everyone, shouldn’t we be seen as the people who are leading the way – back to a healthier more natural diet?

      Perhaps your mother in law might like to get in touch? I would value her opinion from a campaigning point of view as well as personal. I am trying to gather as much information and as many case studies as possible to try and get some news coverage. Your story is very interesting and I am glad to hear that you and your children have benefited from the switch. I have to confess I am very anxious about trying Zac on any dairy yet. Although we have had very poor and little advice with regards to his condition, the last advice was to give him another year at least (and I agree), free from any dairy or gluten containing foods. We do need to give his little gut time to heal as he was so ill for such a large part of his early years. And to be honest, I know that sensitivity is still there as his tummy still goes up like a balloon if he accidentally eats a piece of food with a tiny amount of these ingredients.

      Thanks again for getting in touch and please do feel free to contact me again and tell me more about your experiences.

      Nicola

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