Conventional cow milk comes from CAFO (confined animal feeding operations) cows fed with genetically modified feed and pumped with artificial growth hormones. In addition, it’s pasteurized resulting in no nutritional value. So all the good stuff that comes with milk before pasteurization (electrolytes, vitamins, digestive enzymes, probiotics, fatty acids, minerals) all get traded out for allergies, intolerances, poor digestion, and skin issues.
In addition to pasteurization, conventional cows do not graze through grassy fields as the earth intended, their conventional diet of grains, corn, and soy changes their body composition. A diet consisting of genetically modified feed results in a significant imbalance of omega fatty acids as well.
You probably know that since our bodies can’t produce omega-3 fatty acids, despite it being essential for optimal function, we have to source it from food. You might also know that too much omega-6 fatty acid creates a horrible imbalance resulting in inflammation.
These are the main reasons why it’s crucial to avoid conventional milk.
“But milk has so many benefits!” you’re thinking. And this is the truth. But it must be the right kind. “Well, how about organic?” Milk with the certified organic label means that it comes from a cow that has not been given hormones, antibiotics, and a pesticide soup of genetically modified feed. While that all sounds good, organic milk is still pasteurized destroying a huge percentage of vital nutrients. If all the good stuff is still gone, what’s the point?
So what to do when you just made a fresh batch of paleo cookies? Investing in raw milk for a healthy diet is a beyond beneficial alternative and will pair perfectly with your paleo cookies. Not only can you support local farmers by purchasing raw milk but you can also support your body.
Benefits of Raw Milk
Quality and nutrition are key! If you choose to drink milk from pasture-raised cows rather than CAFO- there is a much better chance that you are getting a healthier product. When you purchase raw milk you’re not only getting quality milk from grass grazing cows but you’re also getting nutrient dense milk- and this is why we drink it!
Because raw milk is not pasteurized, it is fresh and full of all the nutrients our bodies love and crave. Here’s why raw milk is best if you choose to drink cow’s milk:
- Overflowing with vitamins (A,B,C,D,E,K)
- Loaded with minerals (calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorous) with enhanced absorption due to lactobacilli
- Filled with 100% digestible raw fats, proteins, and amino acids
- High in CLA (conjugated linoleic acid) and omega-3 fatty acids
- Rich digestive enzymes and antibodies
- Beneficial digestive tract bacteria and gut probiotics
- Reduces allergies
- Promote healthy skin
- Nutrient absorption
- Increase bone density
- Aid in weight loss
- Whey protein source
Raw Goats Milk
Raw Goats milk is another solid choice when considering raw milks. Goat’s milk is also chock full of tons of nutrients that offer amazing benefits:
- Improved digestion
- Enhances nutrient absorption
- Contains fewer allergens than cow’s milk
- Rich in calcium
- Aids in lowering cholesterol levels
- Promotes healthy skin
Where to Buy Raw Milk?
You can always find raw milk at your local farmers market. If not, Whole Foods also carries raw milk and cheeses that are wonderful!
Non-dairy milks such as almond milk, macadamia nut milk, cashew milk, and coconut milk are trending hot right now. For people who want to avoid animal products all together but still need a refreshing milk fix, nut milks are a good option.
One of the main differences between nut milks and cow or goats milk is the nutrient content. As seen above, raw cow and raw goat milk can have tons of benefits for our bodies! Nut milk nutrients vary by nut but still offer benefits.
Almond milk bought at the store can oftentimes be expensive and contain added sugars and sweeteners that are not easily absorbed. Making your own nut milk at home is the best way to know that you are getting all the good stuff- without the junk. Try the recipe below for these benefits!
- High in healthy fats
- Aids in weight loss
- Low in calories
Unsweetened macadamia nut and cashew nut milk are also good options if you are looking for a creamier consistency!
DIY Nut Milk Recipe
- Put one cup of preferred nuts in glass bowl and cover with water, leave overnight or for 48 hours in bowl
- After 1-2 days drain and rinse nuts
- Place nuts in blender with 2 cups of water
- Blend for 2 minutes
- Use a cheesecloth to strain nuts
- If preferred, sweeten to taste with raw honey or stevia
Personally, unsweetened coconut milk is the most refreshing of milk alternatives for me! Not only is it ridiculously hydrating but it’s also super beneficial for our bodies.
- Healthy fats
- Lauric acid is easily absorbed and used for energy
- Healthy alternative for diabetics
- Aids in weight loss
- Prevents fatigue
- Supports muscle growth
- Protects heart
- Can help fight infections and viruses
Because nearly all soy in the U.S. is genetically modified, we want to avoid soy milk at all costs. Soy milk contains phytoestrogen that affects hormone levels and interferes with regular bodily functions.
- Axe, Josh. “The Truth about Raw Milk.” Dr. Axe, 13 Mar. 2014, draxe.com/raw-milk-benefits/.
- “Health Benefits of Organic vs. Conventional Milk.” Mercola.com, articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/01/14/conventional-vs-organic-milk.aspx.
- Link, Rachael. “Goat Milk Benefits Are Superior to Cow Milk.” Dr. Axe, 22 Nov. 2018, draxe.com/goat-milk/.
- Chris Kresser. “Raw Milk Reality: Benefits of Raw Milk.” Chris Kresser, Chriskresser.com, 27 Feb. 2019, chriskresser.com/raw-milk-reality-benefits-of-raw-milk/.
- Edwards, Rebekah. “Avoid Potentially Toxic Gelling Agents: Make Your Own Homemade Almond Milk from Scratch!” Dr. Axe, 8 Apr. 2017, draxe.com/almond-milk-nutrition/.