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What the Dairy Industry Doesn’t Want you to Know

My sister took this beautiful picture of a wild and free mother cow with her calf, while hiking here in Maui. By far, the hardest food for most people to release from their diet is cheese. I cannot count how many times someone has come to me in desperation for advice on how to rid themselves of their addiction to cheese. Yes, you read that right; I said addiction.

Humans are the only species on the planet who drinks milk after they are weaned off their mothers. We humans are also the only species on the planet to drink milk from another species. You will never see a monkey drinking milk from a giraffe and you will never see a pig drinking milk from a tiger. It just does not happen in nature. We have been conditioned by the media and the dairy industry, with big help from our “honorable” government, to believe that we need milk to survive, thrive and be healthy. When quite the opposite is true. I have had a number of well meaning mothers come to me with real concerns over the health and well being of my child simply because I am not feeding him the breast milk from a cow. I have also had many mothers come to me for advice on what to use as a substitute for cows milk for their child who is allergic to dairy- as if cows milk somehow has these essential nutrients that we cannot get anywhere else.

If I handed you a glass of pig’s milk would you drink it? No, what’s that you say? That’s disgusting and absurd? I couldn’t agree with you more. What about a glass of dog’s milk? Horse milk? Still no? Then why on earth do we think it is normal and delicious to drink cow’s milk? I know why. It’s because we have been duped. We have been brainwashed and spoon fed lies.

The dairy industry’s major selling point is that milk drinking prevents osteoperosis. Yet staggering statistics show otherwise. The countries that consume the highest amounts of dairy (such as the United States, England and Sweden) are also are the countries who have the highest rates of osteoporosis! This is because all animal protein is highly acidic. So when animal foods are ingested the human body often leaches calcium from our bones to balance the acidity in the body, leading to its excretion in the urine. So we actually are promoting osteoporosis by drinking cows milk. These findings are not widely known to the public for one big reason: MONEY. The dairy industry is doing everything they can to convince you that you need to consume the breast milk from a cow to be healthy. Corporate news cannot properly bring you accurate reports because they are funded by their advertisers. For more detailed information on how hard it is to get truthful nutritional information to the broader public, read the book “Whole”, by Nutritional Biochemist Scientist, T. Colin Campbell. It is a wonderful read and one of my favorite informative books.

It is estimated that 75% of humans across the world are lactose intolerant. That means three out of every four people on this planet, when they drink milk, experience one or more of the following: diarrhea, stomach ache, gassiness, bloating, ear infection, and excess mucus. This should be a sure sign that maybe, just maybe, we are not physiologically designed to thrive on the breast milk of another mammal, just as every other species in the world is not either. Your body is trying to tell you to stop drinking cows milk!

All mammals are born with an enzyme known as lactase. That enzyme breaks down the sugar known as lactose. As we mature we loose that enzyme. So it is normal to be lactose intolerant as an adult. But of course the dairy industry then creates a new product known as “Lactaid, where they inject the enzyme into it, which is obviously not normal and not natural at all. The dairy industry tries to tell us that they know better than we know our own bodies. But they don’t. Your body knows best.

Most people do not actually know the process that takes place in order for their dairy products to get to the table. A glass of milk has just as much cruelty, if not more, than a piece of steak. A female cow only starts producing milk once she becomes pregnant. Contrary to popular imagination, dairy cows do not produce milk just to produce milk. They specifically produce milk for their babies. These factory farmed cows only become pregnant by artificial insemination. There is no sex on the farm. A bare hand or long steel device is shoved into their vaginas to inject them with bull semen.

So now the cow is pregnant. Usually within hours of birth, calves are stolen from their mothers. Their babies can become so distressed from separation that they become sick, loose weight from not eating, and cry so much that heir throats become raw. The male calves have little value on the dairy farm. So they are sold at auction and are either raised for beef or go to the veal industry, where they are put in small crates, fed an insufficient diet, deprived of mother’s milk, cannot turn around in their crates and never see the light of day. The veal industry only exists because of the dairy industry. The female calves are also taken from their mothers because we want the milk for our own consumption.

How would you feel if you had your baby torn away from you?

I will emphasize again, the reason babies are stolen from their mothers is to prevent the calves from sucking up the milk they want to sell to the public. We vote with our dollars. By drinking a glass of milk, eating cheese at restaurants, and putting cream cheese on your bagel, you are voting that you want baby calves to be stolen from their mothers.

 

 

Some people have this idea that animals do not have feelings and cannot think and use their brain. Animals use their legs to walk, bowels to defecate, mouths to chew, and eyes to see. All of their body parts work as it is supposed to. Why would we not think they can use their brains to think and feel as well?

“The worst scream I have ever heard, and let me tell you, I have heard them all first hand. When I started finding out about this stuff, a little over 15 years ago, I was like everybody else. I didn’t believe it was that bad. I thought everybody was exaggerating. But unlike everybody else who just blows it aside, brushes it off, I actually went to go see what was going on. I spent six weeks at Thorn Apple Pig Valley Slaughter House in Detroit in 1993. I broke into animal research laboratories, I broke into fur farms. I went behind the scenes at every circus and every rodeo that came through Michigan. But the worst scream I have ever heard was a mother cow on a dairy farm. As she screams and bellows her lungs out day after day for her stolen baby to be given back to her. And I can only imagine the same scream every woman in this room would make, if somebody held you down after birth and stole your newborn baby from you. ” -Gary Yourofsky

My aunt once told me of how farm life was for her growing up in Indiana which painted a very different picture. She spoke of her experience milking dairy cows where the calves generally were allowed to drink some of his/her mother’s milk and grazed on pasture. She could not possibly believe the things I am describing to you now to be true and strongly resisted this information. Her imagination still wants to believe that the milk and cheese she now buys from the grocery store comes from that same picture. But it definitely does not. Over 95% of animal foods consumed in America today comes from factory farms. All these billions of livestock animals produced each year live concentrated together indoors in terrible unimaginable conditions. If factory farms had glass walls, I believe near everyone would become vegan.

Approximately 40% of dairy cows are lame by the time they reach the slaughter house. They are pumped full of antibiotics and hormones so they can produce more milk which enlarges their utters to extremely painful dimensions. It is estimated that 70% of all the antibiotics sold in the US are being fed to animals on factory farms. Mastitis (inflammation of the mammary gland and udder tissue) is common amongst dairy cows. Any nursing mother who has experienced mastitis knows just how painful this is. Machines are hooked up to the udders of cows several times a day to suck them dry. Infections and pus form inside and outside of the udder and the pus is then sucked out of the milk! Pasteurization only sanitizes the pus, it does not eliminate it. Each glass of milk, by USDA standards, is allowed up to one eye-dropper full of pus. Organic cows milk actually has more pus than non-organic milk because when cows get infections, which is quite common on dairy farms, medicines aren’t used to treat the ailment. When cows no longer produce massive amounts of milk after 5-7 years, they are sent straight to the slaughter house. When given a chance, cows can live up to 18-25 years.

“The human body has no more need for cow’s milk than it does for dog’s milk, horse’s milk, or giraffe’s milk.” – Michael Klaper, MD

Really quick I want to touch on the subject of babies who are fed formula and not fed breast milk. In the world we live in today, there is not near enough emphasis on the importance of breast feeding. So often, women are not properly encouraged and supported to fully understand their bodies, their babies’ signals, and the importance of a healthy diet for nursing, which can lead to problems down the road on their breast feeding journey. There is so much I could say when it comes to the subject of breast feeding, so I plan on doing a whole post on this subject. Stay tuned for this one.

So do you know why it is so dang hard to give up dairy products such as cheese, and why it truly can become an addiction? It’s called casomorphins- protein fragments, derived from the digestion of the milk protein, casein. The distinguishing characteristic of casomorphins is that they have an opioid effect. Mother cows, before birth, produce this substance in their milk to make sure that their calf stays close. Actually all female mammals do this too, including humans. It is not morphine, but it sure is a version of morphine under a not so disguised name of casomorphins. The casomorphins are stored in the fat of milk. This is why higher fat dairy products in particular, such as cheese, butter, and cream can be the hardest food for people to cut out of their diet. Knowing this, it makes perfect sense how this component plays a huge role in the mother/baby (and toddler) nursing relationship. Milk is addicting in every way, shape and form.

So now what? How do you get rid of this extremely unhealthy addiction? Kick it to the curb and cut it out like a drug, because quite frankly the human body treats it like a drug. When an alcoholic makes a life changing decision and goes to a treatment center to get help, does the counselor give him/her “cheat days” to drink a beer on the weekends? Does the counselor say, “Once a month or so should be fine, and feel free to drink a little bit on a special occasion”? No, of course not. The best course of action to get rid of an addiction is to cut it out completely. The longer you go without it, the easier it will be to rid yourself of even the thought and desire to touch such a product.

If you are looking for a “substitute” for milk, stop right there. Let’s called it what it really is. It is an “alternative” to satisfy your desire for milk. When people use the word “substitute” for replacing milk in their diet it sounds as if cows milk is the standard of what we humans should be eating, when it clearly should not be. Today i’ve chosen two different recipes which are big hits here at the Fisher house!


Fresh coconut milk

the meat of one young coconut
the water of one young coconut
2-3 cups water
1/4 a vanilla bean, scraped
optional: for a sweet “milk” add 2-3 dates
Blend all ingredients on high until smooth. Kid’s love this creamy smooth milk.

 


Creamy Cinnamon Milkshake

4 frozen bananas
1-2 fresh young coconut waters
5 Medjool dates, pitted
1/2 tsp cinnamon
Blend all ingredients on high until smooth. Add more coconut water if you want a thinner consistency, add less coconut water if you desire a thicker consistency. I’m not even kidding you guys, this milkshake is so creamy, sweet and satisfying! And it isn’t filled with pus, hormones, processed sugars, and a baby cow’s breast milk. Make sure your bananas are ripe before freezing them: no green tip with lots of brown spots! Drink the whole thing for breakfast for a sweet and satisfying start to your day. Of course, make a larger batch if you desire more. 

Cheers to health everyone! Let’s leave the cow’s milk for baby cows and human milk for baby humans, shall we?

In Love and health

Mango Island Mamma, Ellen Fisher

Author Ellen Fisher

More posts by Ellen Fisher

Join the discussion 40 Comments

  • Jenn says:

    Dear Ellen,

    THANKYOU for this! I have asked so many vegans this question! Why are vegans diary free? Don’t cows get sick unless they are milked?? I had no idea…it’s horrendous what I have just read! I won’t look at milk the same way again. Thanks so much! I’ll be very interested in your breast feeding post, I wanted to so desperately BF my little girl but didn’t have enough milk due to a brain tumor on my piturity glad so please be very careful about the way you explain why breast is best, we all know it is but for a few unfortunate mummas we didn’t have a choice 🙂

    Thanks so much!
    Love from Sydney
    Xxx

    • Ellen Fisher says:

      hi there jenn! So glad to hear that this post helped clear things up for you. 🙂 And yes, on my up coming breast feeding post i will be sure to be sensitive to every woman’s experience with nursing, especially to those women who desperately wanted to nurse but something big and crucial was holding them back. xo

  • Sandra says:

    Thank you so much for this informative and honest post! I’m looking forward to read the up coming breast feeding post. I have PCOS so I don’t know if I will be able to breastfeed later on, or even have a baby for that matter.

    This might be a weird question – but what kind of toiletries do you use? Such as toothpaste and shampoo? I really don’t have a clue on what raw vegans use or don’t use. I would be very grateful if you could answer. 🙂

    Thank you for being such a wonderful inspiration!
    Love from Sweden!
    xo

    • Ellen Fisher says:

      hi love! i use a vegan shampoo/conditioner on my hair about once a week and organic toothpowder for tooth paste. dont recall the brand names off hand as I’m not near the products at the moment. i don’t use any face wash or moisturizers on my face. i just wash my face with water. u can find vegan toiletry products at your nearest organic market. or even online I’m sure u could find some good products if u don’t have a good organic store near u

  • Helena says:

    Hi Ellen,
    Here in Holland, we are all addicted to cheese… So since I’am vegan, everyone keeps asking me ‘why no cheese’? But you’re post makes it very clear. Thank you!!
    By the way, love your site! I have been following you for a while on instagram en totally adore your son Elvis. You are an inspiration!
    Big kisses from Holland,
    Helena

  • Martina says:

    I love you Ellen. Thank you for this, thank you for inspiring me daily, I owe you a LOT! And I wish I had fresh coconut water over here to make that delicious-looking smoothie!

    P.s Elvis is the boss!

  • Tessa says:

    I believe 100% of humans are cows milk intolerant since we were not biologically created to drink milk from any other species besides our own! Breastfeeding my baby right now as I’m reading 🙂 Love you Ellen!

  • Mae says:

    Thank you so much for sharing and fanning the flame I have! This is very eye opening… so again thank you!

    A video my sister shared with me that I thought you would enjoy:
    http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=CL5htSOieRI

  • Lyndee says:

    Hi!!! I love your website and your family is precious. I admire your lifestyle and your openness about your faith so much! I am just out if treatment and I too find the raw lifestyle the most healthful and natural way to live. I am so glad I found your site and can’t wait to pick up the 80 10 10 book. Also this post so eye opening the part about the mothers screaming I never knew, so horriffic. If it wasn’t enough that dairy makes me sick to stop consuming it, these horrors do.

  • Valerie says:

    Hi Ellen!
    I love your instagram. I am not a raw vegan, but eat mainly fruit and vegetables, some nuts and seeds and grains. I love oatmeal made with something other than water. Now I know you don’t use any almond milk or anything like that, but do you have any idea where to look/who to ask about health effects of almond milk/rice milk/coconut milk and such? I would like to use something that is processed as little as possible…
    Keep up the good work!!

    Val

  • Nicole says:

    Hi Ellen, i’d just stumbled across your page but it was definitely meant to be as i’ve been wanting to ditch the dairy for some time now & reading this it has put me in the right frame of mind to ditch it completely. Thank you for this post. Do you have any tips on getting my 2 children off it (age 4 & 2), they eat alot of cereal & the occasional glass of milk in the arvos. I have looked for coconut & can only find the tins of coconut milk or cream :-/

  • Briana says:

    Ellen! I have a 15 month old and I no longer breastfeed (unfortunately). With my knowledge now, I hope to breastfeed my next as long as possible. BUT, to be honest I have been giving my son organic cow’s milk. I really don’t know what a good alternative. I have heard vegan moms that use hemp or almond milk but that can’t be enough nutrients and vitamins for him can it? PLEASE HELP ME, I do not want to give my son cow’s milk because it is not for humans, you are so right! He also eats a vegan diet of mostly all organic raw fruits and veggies 🙂 thank you, you are an inspiration , a wonderful mamma, and a beautiful soul. God Bless you!

    • Ellen Fisher says:

      hi love. eating a wide variety of whole, fresh, ripe, raw organic fruits and vegetables and small amounts of seeds will supply your child with all the nutrients and vitamins he needs. yes, at this age of 15 months, you can use hemp or almond milk. way better for your child than cows milk. or better yet, you can make home made raw almond milk by soaking truly raw almonds and blending with water and vanilla bean. then straining the pulp. or you can do this with hemp seeds or coconut meat as well. look online how to make your own seed milks. give him fresh coconut meat, avocado, hemp seeds mixed in a fruit bowl, and green smoothies with lots of greens like kale, chard, collard greens and fruit and vegetable juices. give him as much fruit as he desires. mash lettuce and cucumber and other tender veggies very thoroughly with mashed avocado so he can chew and nibble on vegetables for healthy teeth. give him celery to gnaw on and cucumber. he might just be starting to eat a good amount of solids at this age, so these are healthful foods for your child. elvis didnt start really eating much solids until around this age your son is at. healthy cooked food options are steamed veggies, boiled sweet potatoes, brown rice, quinoa etc. read the book “creating healthy children through attachment parenting and raw foods.” by Karen Ranzi. hope this helps love. my whole blog post speaks on exactly why u don’t need to fear about not feeding your child cows milk. it is not healthy nor necessary for your child.

  • Serena says:

    Ellen u are honestly amazing I’m slowly making the transition to being vegan! And trying to source only organic food! U have inspired me so much! thank you for educating people on these topics! ps u little boy is the cutest!

    love all the way from sydney Australia! X

  • Anna Rogers says:

    Just reading your blogs for the first time. I feel inspired and am excited to share your thoughts and knowledge with others! I always go back and forth between wanting to be vegan and/or raw and something always pulls me back (aka an addiction to S.A.D). But reading this and other posts puts me back on the right track. Looking forward to reading more. Thank you!

  • kara says:

    Hi. I just wanted to say that this was exactly what I needed to see. I’ve been struggling to stay on a vegetarian diet but this was so inspiring that I’m somewhat disgusted with myself for not going vegan just for the cheese and eggs. Very eye opening. I can’t wait to read ‘Whole’. Thanks so much for sharing.
    -k

  • Jenn says:

    Hi Ellen
    You are a inspiration to me. I have 3 bubs and I’m so envious of how you’re raising your wee man. My youngest is 11 months and I want to raise her vegan. With your ebook do you talk about what to raise bubs and kids on? I’m so stressed out with my picky 4 year old. I want to come live with you so you can train us up! I would love to know how best to feed them all so they are getting all the right stuff. I just feel overwhelmed. Regards I love keeping up with you on Instagram and I’m happy you’ve started this blog. Keep it up x

  • Skye says:

    Ellen, I have given up dairy for 12 months now. I no longer desire any shape or form of it…. Yaaa!
    I just wanted to stop by & say I’m LOVING your website!!!!
    Also, lately I’ve been seeing a lot of posts about the ill effects of the dairy industry, but this post, this is by far the BEST & most informative post I’ve read to date!
    Thanks for inspiring so many. It was your instagram I came across that sparked the 811 lifestyle for me!! Big love to you & your family all the way from sunny Australia!!!!
    <3

  • LOVE THIS! So many people brush me off and tell me I’m wrong when I say we are not meant to drink milk. You did an excellent job describing cow’s milk and the dairy industry. I wrote a post a while back about why we’re not supposed to drink cow’s milk and got some hate for it lol…
    Awesome blog as well Ellen,
    Take care.

  • Sarah Hanna says:

    Lying in bed at 1am reading this and sobbing!
    I found out about raw veganism last year and have been on many different transitions from eating all animal products to only eating fish to being a vegetarian and falling off the wagon again and again, like your sister.

    I have a love for animals but I’ve never really thought about the feelings of animals when they are being used for meat/dairy. For a while I have been refusing to drink cows milk and switching to almond milk as an alternative in my cereal and hot chocolates.

    I really want to make the transition from whatever my stage of on and off vegan/vegetarian/pescatarian to a fully raw vegan but unfortunately I live at home with my parents and brother who all devour animal products like their bodies depend on it and don’t listen to me with alternative healthy solutions to their diseased bodies. I live in England where as you said is one of the highest consumer of dairy and theres no vegan or vegetarian restaurants nearby or vegan alternatives on menus which makes me sad! I’m also going to University and leaving home and I’m scared I won’t be able to afford the lifestyle as well as lack support.

    Anyway, thank you for this post which has really hoped open my mind, finally I am learning about my body and what it really needs which the education system lack of the proper knowledge! I only found your instagram account a few days ago and I already love it! Keep going and spreading the message and with your guidance I should soon be on my way to a raw vegan!!!

    Thank you,
    Much love to you and your beautiful family!
    Sarah
    Xox

    • Anna says:

      Hi Sarah!

      I know it’s been a While since you commented, and maybe you’ve already made the transition to raw vegan on your own? I totally relate to your comment! I am at university too, and live in one of the other countries mentioned by Ellen as one of the top consumers of dairy – Sweden. I’ve also fallen off the plant based wagon and presently I am an unhappy omnivore. Little to no support from my boyfriend/family has a lot to do with it. I find that fruit and veg can be quite affordable in Sweden, if you’re willing to put a little effort in to your shopping. How is the situation where you live?

      I was thinking that maybe we could support eachother? My goal is to go low-fat and plant based, but not raw since the winters in Sweden are long and cold and have you craving warm food.
      If you want to start a pen pal -friendship just reply to my comment and we could stay in touch through Instagram or something 🙂

  • Marisa says:

    Hi Ellen,

    I love this post! I have read and heard pieces of everything you wrote, but this is the most complete writing on the subject I have come across. Thank you for sharing and enlightening us all! Do you have any book, article, social account, etc. that you would recommend where I can learn more?

    Thanks you! Keep sharing all of your lovely thoughts and knowledge!! 🙂

    • Ellen Fisher says:

      hi there! thanks! my recommended reading list is on my FAQ question page, the bottom question of “recommended reading”. also, another great source for info is don bennett at health101.org and his books are fantastic! oh and adaptt.org is AMAZING. watch the youtube speech “101 reasons to go vegan” as well as “the best speech you’ll ever hear by gary yourofsky xo

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  • Rebecca says:

    Ellen,
    I’m so thankful for your blog! The scientific explanations you use to educate others is just what I need. You are an inspiration to me. Transitioning from a typical American diet to raw vegan is not always easy, but you help smooth that transition enormously. From the bottom of my heart, thank you!

  • Malou says:

    Thanks for sharing and for explaining this in a way that was easy to follow! You blew my mind with the concept of taking calves away from their mothers – it’s such a horrible thing that I’ve never considered before.
    Looking forward to reading more posts on your lifestyle and to following along on Instagram!

  • Pilar says:

    hi!
    I am just wondering if raw vegans can drink almond/soy/coconut milk?
    Love your blog!

  • Hayley says:

    Ellen,

    I really admire and love everything you have shared with the world about yourself and your family, vegan lifestyle…! I am coming up to the point with my first baby very soon where I am going to start weening her from breastfeeding, now her doctor has recommended me to begin her on cows milk, I asked him what alternatives were, he stated that cows milk and its “fat” is best for her growing bones and brain development for at least the first year… and if we didn’t want to give her cows milk, that we would have to talk about maybe giving her vitamins/supplementation for that…. Do you have any advice for me at all for this before I speak to our doctor again about this, I really am wanting to learn more, and I would like to not giver her cows milk, but all of the medical terminology honesty confuses me sometimes etc…. Thank you!!!!!! <3

    • Ellen Fisher says:

      hi there. you should continue to breast feed and don’t wean her, especially since it sounds like she is less than one year old. Let her continue breastfeeding and nurse until she decides she doesn’t want it anymore (until 2-4 years of age generally). human milk is for human children. cows milk is for young cows.

  • Hana says:

    Hi Ellen thank u so much for making this blog I love u for making me anderstand that mooooo milk is for cows I’m going to follow u daily for inspiration and knowledge to become raw vegan and to Change the world .I have a question do u drink coffee?? I mean it’s ok to drink it lol

  • Madison Hogan says:

    Hi, Ellen, my name is Madison am 14, I live in California! My family doesn’t eat meat, for a long time I have not eaten any meat but I would like to go beyond just not eating meat I would love to become vegan I just think that I would be much happier but the only thing that’s holding me back is the convenience of making meals I don’t really know where to begin on my path of veganism. My last question is I’m struggling with acne and I was wondering if you had any suggestions on things that I could do to get rid of it?

  • Amber says:

    Hi Ellen, my name is Amber. I have been vegan for almost a year and its only because people like you have the guts to spread the word! You have inspired me to make a speech at my University. I am from the south and in a particular region where literacy rates are sub-average and people therefore do not have many outlets of education regarding everything and everything especially about veganism. As an 18 year old who doesnt have many people to look up to, I appreciate your presence in my life. Thank you, Ellen.

  • Hi, I want to subscribe for this blog to get most recent updates,
    so where can i do it please help out.

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