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Animal milk vs vegetable

animal vs plant

I also agree animal milk is meant to nurish animals ie. cows etc. humans and animals wean their young because mothers milk is no longer needed. Just because we CAN drink it doesn't mean we should. I agree we should be getting our nutrients elsewhere. Myself, I love soy milk, it is an aquired taste, once you get used to it it is very tasty. Cows milk is also an aquired taste, most of us were given a bottle of the stuff when we were babies it became a comfort food hence aquired. I feel babies should be weaned to something other then animal milk even if it is plain water

Mon. Jan 16, 7:58pm

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I agree completely. Animal milk (and products derived from it) are intended for baby animals. We should not drink their milk. Over 30% of the American population is lactose intolerant. The body naturally stops producing lactase around age 2 or 3, when children were typically weaned from their mothers. Milk is very much a "cultural" thing, not a "natural" thing as the dairy farmers of America would have you believe.

The way in which dairy cows are treated is despicable. They are forced to give birth so that they will start producing milk, and their infant calves taken almost immediately away from them. They are then pumped full of hormones to maximize milk production -- which we humans ingest. Furthermore, in the United States there are "dairy" cows and "beef" cows. What happens when a male calf is born to a dairy cow? It gets to spend its life in a tiny stall in which it cannot move so that it can become veal.

The thing that really angers me about the dairy industry is the way in which they advertise. Especially those "happy cows come from California" commercials. Contrary to popular belief, cows are not allowed to roam free. They are usually kept in very confined spaces (so that they don't move around much and expend energy - that would be a waste of feed) and fed other dead cows, chicken feces, and other things that you wouldn't think of consuming until they are carted off to be slaughtered.

The other thing that upsets me is the "drink milk to lose weight" claim. That research was done by a researcher from Kentucky on a grant from - guess who - the dairy industry. Drinking milk/eating yogurt will not aid in weight loss. You'd be better off eating broccoli or romaine lettuce (more calcium per calorie than milk) and drinking water. Calcium needs can actually be met 100% without supplementation or drinking milk/consuming dairy products.

Monday, January 16, 2006, 8:34 PM

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while I think the OP and the second poster are the same, and while they appear to be the usualy vegan or vegetarians, I'll agree that I think dairy is significantly over emphasized in our culture. (For the record though, nothing I love more than bbq'd cow)

You don't need dairy for calcium. Dairy certainly isn't the best means of getting calcium. And yes, all the "studies" that promote dairy consumption, and the commercials, are from dairy producers who don't care about your health, they care about their bottom line.

I never drink milk, I don't eat yogurt. I'll have the occasional cheese or icecream. But at most, it's 4 servings a week- certainly none of this 3 a day garbage promoted on TV.

Monday, January 16, 2006, 11:54 PM

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I realize this is probably going to start a flamewar but I like milk. I have no problem with humans drinking it...nothing about humankind is "natural". We build homes out of synthetic materials, we have an economy, we have clothes that are more than just a way to protect ourselves... Our entire existance is so far removed from how it was when we "began" that you have to work REALLY hard to convince me with "it's not supposed to be like this".

I was a vegan for a while until I realized I myself didn't agree with most vegans (I just didn't like the taste of meat). Humans are pretty much at the top of the food chain (excluding the rare run-in with a great white shark...) so if I want to eat bessie for dinner, so be it. And yes, I realize that farms tend not to treat animals well but they are being raised as food, not pets.

As for biased studies, you will find them in EVERY industry on this planet. OBVIOUSLY, certain interests fund studies that predictably have results in their favour. And full studies are rarely published, the interests obviously publicize what works out in their favour. That's where being able to think independantly comes in. I'm sure you've heard the saying "take it with a grain of salt"???

I'm really trying not to be a horrible person here (although I know I come across as one...I just can't seem to word things in a better way) but I think this subject is one that generally just gets people all riled up. It's pretty hard to change people's minds on the subject and people just get angry, thinking the other side is ignorant or too extreme.

And now, after thinking about milk for this long I really want a chocolate chip cookie...and it's only 9:30am. ;o)

Tuesday, January 17, 2006, 9:41 AM

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a plug for soy milk from a meat-eater

Just have to say, even if you aren't vegetarian, it is worth trying soy milk. I switched over from reg dairy to soy 4 years ago and I swear it changed my life, no joke. I had had IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) problems so long that I didn't even realize it wasn't normal (stomachaches, gas, diarrhea, constipation). By switching to soy milk I was able to cut out dairy entirely for awhile (too hard to do otherwise). If you have any stomach troubles, just try dropping dairy for 2 weeks. The best tasting IMO is Silk, plus it blends into coffee best (the trad asian ones take a bit of getting used to if you're used to cows milk).
Now I eat: soy milk, reg yogurt, hard cheeses, other stuff only in small quantities, and I very seldom have stomachaches.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006, 10:17 AM

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(some) people are evolved to drink cow's milk

People have been dairying for thousands (probably tens of thousands) of years. Dairy products provided reliable (you don't have to hunt for it) sources of proteins and fats for African, Mediterranean, and European peoples when those nutrients were much harder to come by than they are now.

As a result, people have adapted to drink cow's milk. No kidding! In times and places of less plenty, there was a strong selective advantage to being able to digest lactose. Genes favoring lactose digestion are common among Mediterranean peoples, Scandinavians, and the Maasai, and they seem to have become fixed in these populations independently.

Holden, C. and Mace, R. 1997. Phylogenetic analysis of the evolution of lactose digestion in adults. Human Biology 69(5):605-628.

Link goes to PubMed abstract


Tuesday, January 17, 2006, 10:40 AM

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regarding the post above mine

Thanks for that link! Very interesting!

(I'm not being sarcastic...I actually found it interesting)

Tuesday, January 17, 2006, 12:43 PM

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Silk Soy Milk is very expensive - as is soy cheese, soy yogurt, etc... - are there any alternatives that are cheaper?

Also, I just have to throw in my two cents... I stopped eating red meat for several years after watching a video in 8th grade called "Where's the Beef?" - a documentary about the beef industry. It was disgusting how the meat is handled, etc... But, I came back to red meat several years later because my body STILL craved it! I try to only eat small portions, and I don't eat it often, but I definitely believe that humans are "meant" to eat red meat - we've always been hunters/gatherers!

And, as for the inhumane treatment of the animals, yes, if you think about it, it's very cruel. However, those animals wouldn't have ever been born if they hadn't been bred to become food. It's just like the rows of corn that are planted across the country, which wouldn't be there if they hadn't been planted. One of our huge evolutionary leaps was the development of farming techniques. That's what allowed humans to stop having to forage for food, and spend time developing things like simple tools. It's the basis of our entire society! You don't rise to the top of the food chain by being nice - does anyone think that lions or sharks are nice to their prey? Of course not!

Tuesday, January 17, 2006, 12:59 PM

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To the most recent poster:

I would have no problem with you eating meat if you went out and shot and killed it yourself. The fact that you let others do your dirty work is wrong. It would have been better off if those animals were never born, because they are only born to suffer. Animals have souls - domestic or not. Would you eat a puppy? Probably not, because you associate some cognition with them. Also, it is like those farm animals are born into hell.

Your above comments are extremely speciest - we rose to the top of the food chain, etc. If it came down to it, you vs. a lion, you would be killed without modern tools. Even if you had a gun, you might still be killed. But the lion would eat you for food because he needed to. Humans no longer need to kill other living beings to survive (nor have they ever). The cultivation of grains allowed society to develop, not the advent of farming animals.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006, 7:59 PM

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You vegans talk about how horrible life is on the farms. Well, I moved out into the country 10 years ago, and I can't really say that I have become an admirer of the way that wildlife treats each other. It's a jungle out there! I hear screams when the coyotes and owls hunt - I can't believe that's a more pleasant way to go compared to the stun gun. Seems like a little crowding in the barns has a certain positive relativity to the natural life. I have gotten to know a lot of ranchers out here and I pass their cattle and sheep every day on my commute into town. Really doesn't look like such a bad life. (The chickens I'm not sure about...I have visited my local farmer's market to see about organic range fed chickens to let my money encourage the practices I agree with.) And the farmers and ranchers I know are some of the most decent human beings I have ever met. So, I don't think things are so terrible as you vegans make it out to be. I respect your right to eat whatever you want (plants scream, too, I heard), and whatever works for your body, you should feel free to do. I will do the same for me. And I do like animals very much and think that the truely cruel practices need to be controlled - they don't reflect our values. Other than that, I think we'll have to agree to disagree. Skoal!

Tuesday, January 17, 2006, 9:34 PM

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soy = $$$

Yeah, but its worth it for me. I don't need to buy soy yogurt or cheese, since the bacteria eat up most of the lactose. And soy ice cream sucks! (fruit sorbet is good though). The cheaper soy milks are fine too, just more pasty.

And a plug for finding common ground (as a meat eating animal lover who dates a vegetarian) -- yes, animals are certainly treated cruelly, and that's terrible. For most of us though, its very hard to avoid craving protein, and the few high-protein alternatives aren't great or readily available. However, a lot of people can get behind the ideas of A) better regulation of factory farms and B) eating LESS meat, having more alternatives available. Things are improving, it used to be hard to get tofu in a regular grocery store. You know, a single good tofu recipe probably saves more animal lives than a guilt trip. Here's my boyfriend's:
Easy But Yummy Tofu Stir Fry
chop up broccoli, red peppers, onions, and spinach
push around in pot with a little oil on the bottom
add chopped pieces of tofu (firm will hold together better, but regular works)
throw in some bottled stirfry sauce or curry sauce (eg TJ's Curry Simmer Sauce)
serve over white rice

Tuesday, January 17, 2006, 11:35 PM

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