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What are the Risks & Benefits of Raw Milk?

26 May, 2021 Ayesha Sana

Milk, a natural food source that is rich in fats, lactose, proteins, and various vitamins as well as minerals is consumed globally in different forms. Milkshakes, tea, coffee, butter, and much more uncountable recipes use milk as the base or as an important ingredient. Though there are numerous recipes that include milk, it is best consumed alone without any additions. It is thought to be the perfect food. Due to its highly nourishing nature, it is even prescribed by doctors to be consumed on a daily basis. Though it is equally good for everyone, it is healthier and more necessary for growing children and old people. Goat’s milk is believed to be the healthiest to digest.

Today, India produces so much milk that it exports the surplus to other nations. Milk is available in dairy shops, milk booths and is available in packets, pouches, tetra packs, and even in the form of powder which is also available in the Online pharmacy. Milk promotes the growth of healthy bacteria in our body and builds our immune system which in turn keeps us safe from various diseases.

Though milk can be consumed in any form, be it butter, cheese, yoghurt, buttermilk or whatsoever, people sometimes prefer to drink it raw. As boiling milk too much, makes it lose its nutrition, it is consumed raw. Normally the milk we get in packets is pasteurized, i.e., it is subjected to partial sterilization to improve it for consumption and keeping. It is the process where liquid food is heated to kill the pathogens for safer consumption.

Raw milk is unpasteurized milk, which has not been subjected to any heat treatment or irradiation. Now, surprisingly this does not make it unfit for consumption. In fact, it has its own benefits, none the less risks as well. Raw milk may carry dangerous and harmful germs, such as Brucella, Campylobacter, Cryptosporidium, E. coli, Listeria, and Salmonella, which pose serious health risks both to you and your family.

Benefits of Raw Milk:

1. Before the introduction of pasteurization, milk was consumed raw. Now, again with the growing popularity of raw milk and its benefits, its consumption has again increased. Most commonly it is said that boiling reduces the vitamin C present in milk, but also, milk is not considered as any major source of vitamin C. It has gained popularity on the grounds that it contains more amino acids, more nutrients, fatty acids, and antimicrobials. Also, it is being considered as more preferable for people with lactose intolerance, asthma, allergies, etc. Pasteurizing the milk kills many bacteria which were harmful, but are of not much concern in modern times. Pasteurized milk loses protein. Pasteurized milk products have sometimes caused illnesses and outbreaks as well. Usually, this happens because of germs introduced in the dairy after the pasteurization process of the raw milk.

2. Basically, raw milk is believed to have higher nutrition, and consumers as people with certain health issues as lactose intolerance can also consume it. It has more fatty acids as well. 3.8% of the American population consumes raw milk.

Risks from Raw Milk:

Due to higher nutrition and neutral pH, raw milk promotes the growth of bacteria which can be harmful to us. Though pasteurization kills many enzymes, they are anyway not much important to our health. Pasteurized milk that has been correctly handled in the dairy, bottled, sealed, and refrigerated after pasteurization, and that is properly handled by the consumer, is very unlikely to contain illness-causing germs.

Considering the large amount of pasteurized milk that people drink instead of raw milk directly, illness from it is very rare. The danger of becoming ill from drinking raw milk is more prominent for babies and little youngsters, more seasoned grown-ups, pregnant ladies, and individuals with debilitated safe frameworks, like individuals with cancer, an organ relocate, or HIV, than it is for sound more established kids and grown-ups. Yet, healthy individuals of all ages can become ill or even kick the bucket on the off chance that they drink raw milk polluted with harmful germs. Many countries ban raw milk for human consumption as the number of outbreaks has increased in places with the legal sales of raw milk.

While raw milk is purer, more natural, and has higher nutrition with more enrichments, it has many beneficial claims which are not yet evident. It is considered more threatening and has potential risks if consumed directly.