Everything You Want To Know About Raw Milk
Raw milk is milk that has not been processed via pasteurization (heating) or homogenization. The pasteurization process destroys most of milk’s nutritional value.
Raw milk is very different from pasteurized milk. Raw milk is full of healthy enzymes, and its protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals are very “bioavailable” to the body — that is, it’s easily absorbed and made use of by the body.
Raw whole milk is alive with enzymes, many strains of naturally occurring beneficial bacteria, all 22 essential amino acids, OMEGA-3 fatty acids, metabolically available vitamins, immunoglobulin’s, minerals, antioxidants, and CLA. It is in its natural state, thus is can be easily recognized and processed by the body. It also has the naturally existing pieces and parts necessary for digestion. Did you know there are several different strains of lactobacillus bacteria? These bacteria, which are killed during pasteurization but are alive and well in raw milk, produce the enzyme lactase. Lactase is necessary for the proper digestion of lactose. This explains why folks who are lactose intolerant can generally digest raw milk.
Most commercial milk in the U.S. comes from the modern Holstein, a cow that has been bred to produce enormous quantities of milk — upwards of three times more the old-fashioned cow. Unfortunately, to keep her well, the Holstein requires specially developed feed and antibiotics that contribute to contaminating her milk.
After the typical Holstein has been milked, most commercial dairies process her milk with pasteurization and homogenization. These processes kill most of the remaining good bateria in the milk, destroying enzymes that would otherwise aid in digestion.
The pasteurization process enables the commercial milk industry to raise cows in less expensive, less healthful conditions that are overcrowded and filthy (and, if you’ve seen a commercial dairy, you know these words do not begin to depict how the cows live their lives).
Processed milk, therefore, may have little or no nutritional value.
Conversely, the friendly bacteria in raw milk support a healthy digestive system, fighting the growth of bad bacteria. As proponents of raw milk, we believe you get more health-related value by drinking milk from an old-fashioned cow, raised on traditional feed in a hygienic and pleasing environment.
In addition to the natural benefits of drinking raw milk, we feed our cows green growing grass and organic alfalfa. We only milk them once per day to reduce production and keep the cows in a fatter, happier state. This lends to producing milk full of nutrients.