SOURCE ET SUITE
Rumors are powerful. They can destroy careers, spread like wildfire, and, in the dairy industry’s case, make for a very profitable business model.
From dairy’s supposed benefits to risks of forsaking it and outright
lies on the way its products are made, let’s just say if you had a dime
for every false information you’ve ever heard about dairy
(or the warnings from those echoing them), you would have enough for a
lifetime supply of soy milk. Here are some of the most notable rumors
and misinformation big dairy wants you to believe:
1. You need milk for healthy and strong bones
Who doesn’t remember the ‘Got Milk?’ ads with just about every
celebrity touting the wonders of milk for healthy bones? Citing how milk
is rich in calcium and so it promotes good bone health, the campaign
worked. Today the number one source of calcium in the American diet are dairy products. But there’s only one little problem: it’s not exactly right.
True, milk and dairy can be rich in calcium but according to the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine,
bone health has more to do with how much calcium you keep from leaving
your body, than how much you take in. When you eat or drink dairy only
32 percent of the calcium is absorbed in your body. Meanwhile 52.6
percent of the calcium in broccoli is fully absorbed, 58.8 percent in
kale and a whopping 63.8 percent in Brussel sprouts.
It’s no wonder then that a study published in Osteoporosis International concluded vegans had the same bone mineral density as omnivores.
2. If you don’t milk the cow for human consumption the cow will be in pain
Again, one of those not quite true statements.
Yes, if a cow is lactating and doesn’t get milked, she will be in pain, but that doesn’t apply to how milk is produced today.
Unlike popular belief, cows don’t naturally make milk year-round.
Just like humans, they only lactate when they’re nursing so they can
feed their calves. When it was just a cow and a farmer, the cow got
pregnant, had her calf and it was ok for the farmer to take a little of
the milk for himself while the calf took most of it to grow. Today,
however, that’s not how the process goes. Milk is produced on a large industrialized scale
where cows are impregnated and have their calves taken away after one
day —they won’t need their mother’s milk since they’ll become veal— and
the milk is then taken solely for human consumption. The process is done
on repeat so that a cow is producing milk 305 days of the year.