Children Who Drink Raw Milk Less Prone to Allergies

by Sarah Healthy Pregnancy, Baby & Child, Raw Milk and Childcare, Raw Milk BenefitsComments: 141

child drinking raw milk

The Hygiene Hypothesis states that when children lack early exposure to infectious agents, parasites, and symbiotic microorganisms like normal gut flora such as would naturally occur in a rural or farm environment, they are much more likely to suffer from autoimmune disorders such as allergies or asthma.

This hypothesis helps to explain why farm kids tend to be so much healthier and far less prone to immune disorders than children raised in an urban setting.

Now, an international team of researchers has taken the Hygiene Hypothesis a step further by looking at how raw milk protects against allergies in children.

The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology is reporting that farm children who drink raw milk exhibit a far superior immune response than either farm children who don’t consume raw milk or children living in an urban setting.

The team of researchers led by Dr. Mark Holbreich MD, an allergy and asthma specialist, compared skin prick tests of mostly raw milk drinking Amish children aged 6-12 years old living in Indiana to non raw milk drinking Swiss children living in either a farm or urban setting.  Amish children in Indiana were chosen due to their genetic similarity to modern day Swiss children.

The results of the skin prick tests to assess allergic sensitization are summarized as follows:

  • Over 44% of the urban living Swiss children exhibited an allergic reaction.
  • Approximately 25% of the non raw milk drinking Swiss farm children had an allergic reaction.
  • Only 7% of the primarily raw milk drinking Amish farm children had an allergic reaction.

This study comes on the heels of the 2011 Gabriella study which found that:

“Exposure to farm milk in early life and consumption of raw farm milk have been associated with a reduced asthma and atopy risk, and it has been suggested that this protection might be mediated through receptors of the innate immune system.”

While the results of this large survey combined with allergy testing is very promising with raw milk potentially a very easy way for parents to safely increase the odds that their children avoid the lifelong burden of allergies and/or asthma, further research is warranted.  Dr. Holbreich’s team noted that some of the superior immune response of the raw milk drinking children may be due to the very large Amish families which may provide additional protective factors.

Should parents eager to provide their children with maximum lifelong vibrant health wait for these studies to occur?

While some parents may wish to remain cautious, more forward thinking parents wishing to provide their children with a health edge today will no doubt seek to source grassfed raw milk immediately based on this information.  As wisely noted by Dr. Kate Rheaume-Bleue in her book Vitamin K2 and the Calcium Paradox:

“we can’t always wait for science to identify the nutrients and test for them before we go ahead and benefit from them”.

Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

Sources:  Amish children living in northern Indiana have a very low prevalence of allergic sensitization

The protective effect of farm milk consumption on childhood asthma and atopy

Study of Amish children proves raw milk promotes health, boosts immunity

Picture Credit

 

Comments (141)

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  • Stephany

    Just curious if they are taking into consideration any other variables other than the raw milk. I am sure the Amish children eat a very healthy whole food diet from fruits, vegetables and farm raised meats and eggs. I would just be curious to know if the Swiss children consumed the same diet.

    August 9th, 2013 12:56 pm Reply
  • szukam zony

    What a material of un-ambiguity and preserveness of valuable experience concerning unexpected feelings.

    July 18th, 2013 10:51 pm Reply
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  • Laura mama of 2

    HELP!

    I am having a weird issue with my raw milk.

    I am new to this and maybe this is normal, or not…

    I live in a state where raw milk is actually illegal. A friend (previous owner of a dairy) has a young guernsey and we own a share of her and are able to receive the by products she produces. This winter she was fed a blend of hays and grasses to supplement her diet until she was moved and fully pastured. The move happened 2 weeks ago.

    Here is my issue. Her milk has always been so fresh and delicious. Lots of cream that shook right into the milk and was so tasty. It stayed fresh tasting for 7-12 days. The last gallon I had came in 2 1/2 gallon mason jars that I wash and sanitize myself, as we have always done. The first jar was a bit earthy, which I expected with the move to grass. A friend tried a glass that was on the bottom of the first jar and said it tasted fishy. I didnt notice the taste until tonight when i opened the second jar. The second jar was from the same milking and was opened 3 days after the first. When I shake the jar the cream doesn’t mix completely, there are always some chunks that float on the top and stick to the inside of the jar. I warmed some up for my daughter’s cocoa and there was a film of yellow oil on top that definitely smelled fishy.

    I have contacted the owner but her husband, the expert, is out of town. Is this something anyone else has experienced as the diet of the cow changes? Or does this seem like a problem?

    Any information would be appreciated.

    May 4th, 2013 9:35 pm Reply
    • Christie B.

      It sounds like the second jar of milk might have frozen. That wouldn’t explain the fishy smell/taste, but would explain the cream not mixing well with milk and clumping. And it would explain the melting of the cream when you warmed it. I hope by now the problem has been solved so that you can enjoy the milk again!!

      May 27th, 2013 6:03 pm Reply
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  • Susan Lawrence

    I drink raw milk, so I’m on board with the project, but this blog post’s summary of the study is inaccurate and misleading. The JACI study did not make any claims about children who live on farms and who drink pasteurized milk. Almost all of the Swiss children (87%) living on farms drank milk directly from the farm. This percentage was actually higher than that of the Amish kids who drank farm milk (79%). So there was no way to compare raw-milk-drinking farm kids with farm kids who don’t drink raw milk. The summary in this blog post is inaccurate:

    “The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology is reporting that farm children who drink raw milk exhibit a far superior immune response than either farm children who don’t consume raw milk or children living in an urban setting.

    The team of researchers led by Dr. Mark Holbreich MD, an allergy and asthma specialist, compared skin prick tests of mostly raw milk drinking Amish children aged 6-12 years old living in Indiana to non raw milk drinking Swiss children living in either a farm or urban setting.”

    This is not the case: the study made no claims about farm children who don’t drink farm milk. It simply found that both children raised on farms had fewer allergies and less asthma, and that most of these children also drank raw milk. The Swiss farm children’s slightly greater propensity to allergies, when compared to Amish farm children, cannot be explained by milk consumption. The post should be corrected!

    March 19th, 2013 1:41 pm Reply
  • Vivi

    My (8yr old) daughter loves corn flour tortillas for tacos at home. We have been eating grass-fed beef and dairy for about almost a month, happily. Yesterday we had farm-raised chicken tacos (get the chicken from the same grass-fed cow farm) w/ store bought corn flour tortillas. She woke up at 5am with a horrible stomach ache stating “mommy my stomach is squeezing.” I kept her home and made her ginger tea with some raw honey. She is running a moderate fever so I know something is wrong and she’s been in bed all day with an off/on again headache. Does anyone have any tried and true recommendations or wisdom on this? I also gave her some grass-fed beef broth I made at home.
    Many thanks.

    March 6th, 2013 5:45 pm Reply
  • Gina

    My daughter developed allergies to several things including milk while on raw milk. I don’t blame the raw milk for being raw but I question what exactly the cows are fed. As a baby she was sensitive to milk (diarrhea, eczema), I had to switch to goat milk just to nurse. She seemed to grow out of it and it would only occasionally occur and we switched to raw milk. Problem went away. However after maybe 3-4 years she became allergic to milk, beef, eggs, yeast, soy, wheat, among others (she gets big hives). We live in AZ and the raw dairy here does not pasture their cows (no pasture just desert). Their alfalfa is supplied to them by someone else and I believe they also give them oats and other feed to supplement. They also started giving the cows enzymes. (my husband claimed it started tasting different) We switched to raw goat — same thing, but not quite as severe. Now I truly believe it’s due to the gm soy and /or wheat they put in most animal feed. Soy was in the goat feed. It’s next to impossible to find it without. We have chickens and she can’t do our eggs because of the feed. We found soy free feed and she could eat the eggs (she can also eat emu and ostrich eggs), but the feed was mash not pelletized and the chickens didn’t like to eat it and weren’t laying as much. She can eat sheep milk yogurt with no problem, but it’s impossible to find raw sheep milk that we can drink and make our own stuff from.

    March 6th, 2013 3:52 am Reply
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  • Antoinette Murray via Facebook

    What is up with Hawaii?? You would think it would be easy and amazing to get a2 grass fed organic milk… Uh no… Impossible .. Booooooo!!!

    March 2nd, 2013 3:49 am Reply
  • William Lee via Facebook

    Yep and the FDA wants to put more fake substances in it. Resist!

    March 1st, 2013 8:21 pm Reply
  • Garney Barnes via Facebook

    How bout grass fed dairy in cheese?

    March 1st, 2013 8:13 pm Reply
  • Robin Kelman via Facebook

    I can sing the praises of raw gurnsey cow or goat milk. These are the only 2 types I can tolerate. For years I thought it was all milk but mostly goat for 25 years now. Feel blessed to have my own goats and other friends who make quality milk. And I have no allergies.

    March 1st, 2013 7:06 pm Reply
  • Jenna Bolton via Facebook

    Rhea, no it’s not. Laws vary from state to state. Click the link in a previous post to find raw milk in your state, if it’s available.

    March 1st, 2013 3:47 pm Reply
  • Melba Pierce via Facebook

    And research just released states that the children of the PA Dutch community as we know them, don’t have allergies and drink raw milk and eat all organically grown NON-GMO foods – I’m praying their kind of farming takes over this country and the whole world again – and that may be very soon – just as soon as all those GMO seeds fail to spout – Pray they never sprout again – none of them…

    March 1st, 2013 2:58 pm Reply
  • Tammy Shaw May via Facebook

    In many areas, raw milk is sold as “pet” milk. You can whatever you want when you get it home. Also, you can get raw milk through joining a cow share program. In my area, west-central Indiana, there are Amish farmers who provide cow shares. The dairy is Grade A (or maybe AA) inspected. Consistently yummy milk. There are two other dairies in the central Indiana who sell pet milk.

    March 1st, 2013 1:43 pm Reply
  • Rhea Jussen-Jongema via Facebook

    and isn’t it illegal to drink raw milk in the US, even from your own cow? (a case from Wisconsin comes to mind)

    March 1st, 2013 1:06 pm Reply
  • Pietro Spina via Facebook

    One of the best books I’ve read is “The Untold Story of Milk”. It not only talked extensively on the health benefits of raw milk, but also the the negative aspects of drinking pasteurized and homogenized milk. So much great information.

    March 1st, 2013 12:41 pm Reply
  • Lisa Lisa via Facebook

    Finally, they’ve adjusted for the Hygiene Hypothesis.

    March 1st, 2013 12:31 pm Reply
  • thehealthyhomeeconomist via Facebook

    Sarah E Wiederkehr Thank you for posting that link1

    March 1st, 2013 12:03 pm Reply
  • Emily Prince via Facebook

    Go to realmilk.com to find sources near you. Good luck!

    March 1st, 2013 12:01 pm Reply
  • Sarah E Wiederkehr via Facebook

    did you guys check out this list to find raw milk http://www.realmilk.com/real-milk-finder/

    March 1st, 2013 11:59 am Reply
  • Amie Langes Porter via Facebook

    Oops, commented on the wrong milk article from your site.

    March 1st, 2013 11:54 am Reply
  • Amie Langes Porter via Facebook

    This must be why my older kids preferred cold breast milk.

    March 1st, 2013 11:53 am Reply
  • Anderson E Rosinha Noel via Facebook

    where can u buy raw milk?

    March 1st, 2013 11:39 am Reply
  • Alaina Archer via Facebook

    I agree, but my problem is locating it. Everyone keeps telling me to call WAPF people in my state, IA. I have tried to call the local people and no one is calling me back – most probably because of the legal issues happening currently here. So, my question becomes – how do you find it when you feel like you have tried every avenue? I can’t just drive to farms and start asking. :) I appreciate the touting of the benefits, but I guess I would like some information on how to help us locate it. Everyone says to call WAPF and that isn’t working for me – I wish it was!

    March 1st, 2013 11:38 am Reply
    • Richard Albanay

      Yes, drive to farms and start asking. Networking through dairymen works. Politely asking for help while demonstrating a solid base of knowledge about the cows, raw milk, and the legal issues along with having a good reason for wanting the milk will lead dairymen take you seriously and want to help you.

      Attend a dairyman’s association meeting. Find a farm/diary supplier and start chatting. Talk to farmers at farmer’s markets.

      You’ll get plenty of no’s, some leads, and then you’ll hit a yes. Large dairies won’t be interested so aim small but not so small that good sanitation equipment and practices are not in place. A good choice would be a family owned dairy that’s inspected and legally makes unpasteurized cheese.

      You may end up with a few candidates. Visit the dairies and compare their practices with known good practices (http://organicpastures.com/pdfs/opdc-ramp-jan-2013.pdf) to pick the best dairy.

      You’ll be more compelling if you represent a larger group like a CSA in need of a large quantity of milk on a regular basis, so joining one or even gathering up a few neighbors and creating your own is helpful.

      August 15th, 2013 8:40 am Reply
  • Paul Hardiman via Facebook

    We kefir all of our live milk. We harvest a quart of this cultured milk a day. The SCOBYs multiply like rabbits and the surplus goes into the compost. We use the kefir as a thick, creamy beverage, or sour cream, or will split it into cheese and whey. That whey is our primary inoculant for ferments or soaking flour for baking. Kefir whey tastes like lemon juice and much more pleasant than regular whey. Yeah, we are big fans of live dairy!

    March 1st, 2013 11:38 am Reply
  • Lyndsey Stark Stang via Facebook

    And great for old people who can’t get enough vitamins down.

    March 1st, 2013 11:14 am Reply
  • Daneta Sims via Facebook

    I don’t know the difference, but I do know A2 is available where I live.

    March 1st, 2013 11:09 am Reply
  • Natalie Kridler Benoit via Facebook

    I’ve read much on the subject. I appreciate the potential value of raw milk, however, A1 beta casein is the main type of milk available in the U.S. and is simply NOT healthy, even in it’s raw state. A2 milk in preferable, as in Gurnsey cows, sheep and goat. Read “The devil in the milk”, and see youtube.com for more about A1, and A2 milk.

    March 1st, 2013 10:59 am Reply
  • Hrh Ronnie Cruz Bernardo via Facebook

    Other way of looking at “germs”

    March 1st, 2013 10:59 am Reply
  • Hrh Ronnie Cruz Bernardo via Facebook

    http://bridgetoselfhealing.blogspot.com/2012/09/on-probiotics-and-antibiotics.html

    March 1st, 2013 10:59 am Reply
  • Kara Smith via Facebook

    Enjoyed fresh raw cow’s milk this morning! Will be making butter from our cream this afternoon, my 7 year old is nearly a pro at making it now and it’s great mommy daughter time that we both look forward too!

    March 1st, 2013 10:57 am Reply
  • Tina Gorczyca Bradley via Facebook

    I just saw a post yesterday comparing grass fed beef to conventional beef…it had 3x most nutrients and 10x more I think CLA…don’t remember the exact nutrients they were measuring, and haven’t found a similar chart anywhere yet. Do you have those figures? I’d bet there is a similar nutrition increase in grass fed milk as well. I think it would be helpful for people to know that they are getting a lot more nutrient density from grass fed dairy and beef.

    March 1st, 2013 10:57 am Reply
  • Kelley Stone Williams via Facebook

    We LOVE raw milk but it gives me horrible body odor. Any idea why?? Am I detoxing? Am I not digesting it? :-(

    March 1st, 2013 10:56 am Reply
  • Arlie Crabtree via Facebook

    The China Study is great and can easily be adapted to be inline with Nourishing Traditions. NT recommends that half your meal be vegetables either raw or fermented. High quality dairy is vet important, if vegetables are at least 50% of your intake it is not hard to keep dairy intake at 20% or less.

    March 1st, 2013 10:53 am Reply
  • Ashley Lynn via Facebook

    Do you have someone you order from? I am having a hard time finding any places that carry it. I still need to look into locals but if you have any suggestions on how to search! I miss it a lot I felt amazingly better drinking it!!!

    March 1st, 2013 10:52 am Reply
  • Regina Normandy via Facebook

    Last year this time my daughter was on twice daily breathing treatments. Since then we have switched to raw dairy and she hasn’t struggled as much-only one incident as opposed to being at the dr once a week…I’m not sure if it’s just cuz she’s a year older, or if it’s the milk…but I have to believe it has something to do with it!

    March 1st, 2013 10:51 am Reply
  • Jennifer Smith Tomes via Facebook

    We love our raw milk and are blessed that we can get it quite easily here right now from our farmer, unfortunately my oldest son gets eczema from it too and my baby gets eczema when I drink it and then nurse him. But my girls do great on it and there is nothing that tastes better in the world than raw milk!

    March 1st, 2013 10:45 am Reply
  • Michele Leigh Walden via Facebook

    i believe the only beings that should be drinking cows milk, are baby cows. you ever read the china study? might be a good idea 😉

    March 1st, 2013 10:41 am Reply
  • Christina Schaub Helmick via Facebook

    The problems with dairy come when it is pasteurized. The heating destroys all of the beneficial bacteria, enzymes and vitamins. Raw dairy from pastured, grass-fed cows is incredibly nutritious.

    March 1st, 2013 10:38 am Reply
  • Stacy Murtland Thomas via Facebook

    Michele, you are incorrect, unless you are talking about PROCESSED dairy – that IS harmful. RAW dairy is highly beneficial. I’m in CA and it’s “legal” to buy it, but it has to go through all this crap, so only one dairy in the state is authorized to sell and they are always having problems with the gov. AND, they aren’t grass fed, organic, just big and raw… I WISH I could find some around here! I’ve been trying for 5 years. Not giving up!

    March 1st, 2013 10:37 am Reply
  • Diana Weeks via Facebook

    Danielle Kennedy maybe I’ll start looking into raw milk now

    March 1st, 2013 10:35 am Reply
  • Rachel MacPherson Crouse via Facebook

    I wish I could afford something like that but I doubt it’s even possible to get it shipped. I’ve been thinking about asking the farmer to sneak it to me but I don’t think it’s right to ask for an exception when so many others can’t get their milk either. I guess I should contact my local WAPF leader again to ask about another source but we already paid for our cow share and we can’t afford I buy into another one :(

    March 1st, 2013 10:33 am Reply
  • Vicki Steen Hynes via Facebook

    How long can raw milk be stored in a deep freeze for, Sarah?

    March 1st, 2013 10:30 am Reply
  • thehealthyhomeeconomist via Facebook

    Do whatever it takes to get this nutritious food for your children. I used to ship in frozen raw dairy from 1000 miles away for several years until it was available locally. It was expensive but SO worth it. If you are near a border, perhaps you could drive and pick up a bunch and freeze it and do this once or twice a month. Get creative!

    March 1st, 2013 10:28 am Reply
  • Michele Leigh Walden via Facebook

    i don’t believe milk in any form should be given. there are so many other alternative healthy options. dairy is not healthy.

    March 1st, 2013 10:27 am Reply
  • Ashley Rozenberg via Facebook

    I wish dairy didn’t give my son eczema. Raw milk really helped me rebuild my gut after it was messed up from all the antibiotics during my c-section. At least he’s getting raw mama milk.

    March 1st, 2013 10:27 am Reply
  • Vicki Steen Hynes via Facebook

    Funny you are posting this now because I just got done asking someone, about an hour ago, if they knew where I can find someone around here that supplies…….

    March 1st, 2013 10:24 am Reply
  • Rachel MacPherson Crouse via Facebook

    Yes it has really helped my sons asthma. I’m so so sad right now because the farm I get my milk from is under watch and we aren’t allowed to get our milk. My son had the worst cold right now too and we’ve had to resume puffer use for now. I’m so upset at this county (Canada) for robbing our children of such a nutrient dense and important food.

    March 1st, 2013 10:24 am Reply
  • Susan Sullivan via Facebook

    SC just made it legal!

    March 1st, 2013 10:23 am Reply
  • Fumika Harrison via Facebook

    How early can you introduce raw milk to children? I’m still bf my 9 month old but he also is eating solids. Can I introduce it now?

    March 1st, 2013 10:22 am Reply
  • Mandi McBride Jensen via Facebook

    Unless they are allergic to casein. Which really stinks.

    March 1st, 2013 10:22 am Reply
  • Tara

    I read this article and the follow up comments with greater and greater dismay. I suppose I should expect it from a blog such as this one, but I do want to urge any readers to please, please consider very carefully whether you really want to take this plunge. Pasteurization was the single biggest health advance for our country, ever. It exists for a reason. So very many dangerous diseases can be contracted from consuming raw dairy products, it boggles the mind. Salmonellosis, E. coli, Listeriosis, Campylobateriosis, Staphyloccocus aureus, Yersinia, and Brucella just to name some of them. The raw milk trend is gaining momentum from people who 1. who have been lucky so far to not have become sick yet and 2. aren’t very educated about the science behind pasteurization and 3. choose to overlook the dangers of these diseases and/or don’t understand how truly awful and life-threatening they are. If you or your loved one do survive them, you may have life-long physical ailments (E. coli – say hi to dialysis! if you live) and (Campylobacter – you didn’t really need all that colon did you?) OR at the very least, you will run up some very scary medical bills at the best. If you really don’t believe me, after all, I’m just some invisible internet writer, PLEASE do NOT feed this stuff to your kids. They are the most vulnerable population and I promise they will be the first to die if there are more than a few of those bad bugs present in your milk. Check out realrawmilkfacts.com before you go any further. You should at least get another opinion.

    February 28th, 2013 9:17 pm Reply
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  • Beth

    Hi Sarah,
    My supplier of raw milk has just been shut down and now I am
    not sure what way to go. In health food shops in Australia, fresh pasturised organic milk
    Is available but very expensive. My family does not like coconut milk. Is it regular pasturised full cream milk better than no milk? Should I skim of the cream because of toxins in the fat molecules? Have you some advice?
    Regards Beth

    February 28th, 2013 10:53 am Reply
  • zobacz

    I love your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you make this website yourself or
    did you hire someone to do it for you? Plz reply as I’m looking to create my own blog and would like to know where u got this from. cheers
    See this: zobacz, http://ably.waw.pl

    February 26th, 2013 7:14 pm Reply
  • Pam

    I’d be curious if there are any studies on “regular” milk (pasteurized, homegenized, non organic) and allergies. Raw milk is “illegal” in our state, I have gotten sick from raw cheese before, and we live in suburbia, so the nearest dairy farm is 2 hours away. I am staying away from anything raw right now. My husband and I, as well as all 3 kids are completely allergy free, and drink A LOT of milk (like 4 gallons a week). My pediatrician has mentioned she has noticed fewer allergies in her patients who eat a lot of dairy. And also that kids allergic to dairy tend to have a gazillion other allergies too. Just curious!

    February 24th, 2013 6:09 am Reply
  • Ashley

    @chubblywubbly: I just moved from NYC and used to order raw milk from uddermilk.com. They deliver to your door weekly (day depends on when they are in your neighborhood) and I think it is $10 a gallon. You can also get eggs, grass fed beef, and raw milk cheese! Loved it.

    February 23rd, 2013 2:52 pm Reply
  • Lawrence

    Hi Lee. Thanks for the correction. Sorry bout that Sarah.

    February 22nd, 2013 8:30 pm Reply
  • Rick

    I have to concur with Ms Brown. While the results are encouraging these two groups are sufficiently disparate to cause even a lay person to question the validity of the comparison.

    I find your quote from Dr. Rheaume-Bleue ironic in that not waiting for validation of so many dietary theories is why we’re up the proverbial creek today.

    btw I too lament the fact that raw milk is an evil substance here in Ontario CA

    February 22nd, 2013 3:12 pm Reply
  • wendell

    I purchased 4 gallons of raw milk Wednesday and I’m enjoying it very much. I also got some leaf fat to render into lard and some grass fed beef liver. It was about 70 miles round trip, but worth it to me. It tastes good, but doesn’t seem to have as much cream in it as the milk my grandmother provided back in the mid-1950’s. She had a different breed of cow than the farmer/rancher I get my milk from, I believe. I love it anyway and I’m grateful to have some raw milk.
    Sara, you mentioned in your post on the healthy mouth summit about eating raw frozen liver or feeding it to your son. How much per day should an adult eat? Do you slice it up and freeze it so it will be easier to get a certain size portion.

    February 22nd, 2013 2:59 pm Reply
  • Carmie Jones

    Go to http://www.realmilk.com/real-milk-finder/
    Click on your state.

    February 22nd, 2013 2:31 pm Reply
  • Rebecca Brown

    While I agree that raw milk likely is a factor in this (in much the way raw honey has very similar healthful properties) I would caution citing this as an end-all study the verifies this conclusion universally. Swiss children and Amish children are being raised in EXTREMELY different geographic environments with wildly different climates and particularly unique environmental allergens and pollutants (think of all the things outlawed in Europe that are legal in the US and vice versa). While the genetic similarities might compensate for a portion of this, the fact of the matter is that humans adapt to their environment and a study that literally spans continents and compares various groups across continents. There will still be children who have an intolerance to dairy, there will still be children whose immune system may be too weak to handle these raw foods. While I love living as simply and unprocessed as possible, I would caution readers from citing this in such a gung-ho fashion as the final say on the issue.

    February 22nd, 2013 12:15 pm Reply
  • Bonnie

    Chubblywubbly:
    Check the Weston A Price Foundation website for more information on raw milk for your state. This is how I found out farms in Virginia providing raw milk. It is truly so delicious. All the best in your search.
    Bonnie

    February 22nd, 2013 12:11 pm Reply
  • Lawrence

    Hi Sarah. I enjoy your blog and the timely info but I’m curious as to why a grass-fed, organic, raw milk gal would have a “Clorox Ad” posted on her website?

    February 22nd, 2013 11:58 am Reply
    • Lee

      That is a google ad based on YOUR web history.

      February 22nd, 2013 5:28 pm Reply
  • Sam

    Hallo I have just found that I am pregnant. I have read many articles about listerious in raw milk, can you write me if there is some way to find out wheather milk have listerious or no. Like with homemade kefir, do you think that when it is watery the milk was wrong?

    Thanks a lot

    February 22nd, 2013 11:49 am Reply
  • shonda chapman

    When this raw milk study was first published, it was featured on NPR. I heard the article and scoured the web to find out more. Upon reading the study, my first question was, “Were these Amish kids immunized?” As many/most Amish communities historically would not immunize their children as a rule. So, I contacted Dr. Holbreich to inquire as to whether the immunization status had been considered. He kindly responded by saying that the Amish population was immunized at a rate of 80% as a whole in the population which they used for their study. I am pretty familiar with the Amish community as we live very near Lancaster, PA, and often get our raw milk, chicken, eggs from Amish sources. An 80% immunization rate would be a very high percentage in the communities from which I am familiar. In addition, I was left with the impression that immunization record, schedule, etc. was not considered individually for each child included in the study. While I do not even slightly doubt the power of raw milk or its positive effects with regard to allergies, I would assert that the immunization factor is of crucial impact in my opinion to the findings of this study. Of course, this is my opinion and I have far fewer letters after my name:)

    February 22nd, 2013 11:47 am Reply
  • Marilyn

    Sarah, will you be participating in the raw milk cure this year? If I remember correctly, you did this March 1 of last year. I participated and plan to do it again!

    February 22nd, 2013 11:07 am Reply
  • Jodi Strassheim via Facebook

    What about sensitivities vs. allergens? Delayed reaction (my son) vs. immediate reaction??

    February 22nd, 2013 11:07 am Reply
  • Rita J Paulin-Alexander via Facebook

    I grew up on that one, though I am not able to drink it now!

    February 22nd, 2013 10:37 am Reply
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  • Denise Hale Smith via Facebook

    Raw goat milk is also a great option, and it’s higher in protein than cow milk.

    February 22nd, 2013 10:03 am Reply
  • Denise Hale Smith via Facebook

    I believe Weston A. Price has more info. on raw milk issues, as well as, the book, “Nourishing Traditions”, by Sally Fallon. Not sure about this A1/A2 controversey? Raw is still better than ultra-pasturized dairy any day.

    February 22nd, 2013 9:50 am Reply
  • Sarah E Wiederkehr via Facebook

    actually the A1 issue comes down to individual cows. A farmer we know in CT testing every single one of his 80 cows (all Randall linebacks) and some were A1, some were A2. I think the older breeds (guernseys and randalls included) are mostly A2 but not all. I agree with thehealthyhomeeconomist that grassfed is the most important piece

    February 22nd, 2013 9:05 am Reply
  • thehealthyhomeeconomist via Facebook

    Shanna Rangel According to Mark McAfee, owner of Organic Pastures raw dairy in CA, the A1 issue is not very significant if the cows are grassfed. I would give my children raw milk from A1 cows IF they were grassfed no problem. I would prefer jerseys or guernsey cows, but if grassfed holstein milk is all that is available, that is still an excellent choice.

    February 22nd, 2013 8:55 am Reply
    • SoCalGT

      I agree with you Sarah. If the choice was between raw Holstein milk or pasteurized the raw Holstein is far superior but there is such a big difference between Holstein milk and milk from Jerseys and Guernseys. I will occasionally buy the Organic Pastures (Holstein herd) raw milk if the Claraval brand raw is not available. Claraval has a Jersey/Guernsey herd. The Claraval milk is so much thicker, creamier, more cream on top and when clabbered much more curd. The Organic Pastures is almost all whey when clabbered. I hope that Organic pastures will consider this and start improving their herd.

      February 28th, 2013 3:19 am Reply
  • Patricia Waite Kuster via Facebook

    tell this to my kids. Kelly is the only one that is smart enough to buy it and give it to her kids.

    February 22nd, 2013 8:01 am Reply
  • Leonardo

    Any thoughts in boiling raw milk first? And at what age would you deem safe for a child to start drinking raw milk.

    Many thanks,
    Leonardo

    February 22nd, 2013 3:45 am Reply
    • Jen

      I would never boil raw milk before drinking it! I do cook with mine, however. My baby, born by emergency c-section at 29 weeks, was fed breastmilk for 3 months. After that, he got the WAPF raw milk formula until he was 1 year old, and now he drinks straight raw milk daily. He is now 2 years old, with no delays, and no problems whatsoever. He and my 5 year old son are extremely healthy! As long as you know your farmer is producing raw milk properly, it is safe for everyone… even preemies.

      February 22nd, 2013 12:29 pm Reply
    • Kate @ Modern Alternative Mama

      No. Don’t. I’ve read studies that show that boiled farm milk does not have the same protective effects as raw milk. It really must be raw. Many give it to babies and I started giving to mine around a year as they were breastfed and didn’t need it.

      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21875744

      February 22nd, 2013 1:10 pm Reply
  • Helen T

    I’m from Northern Indiana and grew up around the Amish. I see them at McDonalds, I see them at Dairy Queen and shopping at supermarkets like we do. Years ago I went to an Amish bakesale and bought an apple pie. Real apples from their orchards inside? Not a chance – they had dumped the contents of a can of apple pie filling – yes, the goo and the odd slice of mushy apple. These were not Mennonites, but Amish.

    My mother later made the observation that surprising the Amish had no problems eating ultra-processed food. She also didn’t much appreciate the switch to poly-blends for their wonderful quilts (!).

    Although I visit twice yearly Northern Indiana (no longer live there) I wanted to verify my observations and called a friend yesterday who lives in the countryside where Amish live – they agreed with these observations.

    I’m writing this to state: drinking raw milk, exposure to farm animals and large families, absence of vaccines (as one reader stated)…..all this must be incredibly beneficial even when the eating habits aren’t perfect.

    February 22nd, 2013 1:36 am Reply
    • Kate @ Modern Alternative Mama

      Yes, this is accurate. My MIL grew up in Amish country and we go visit there a few times a year. She said because they can’t “dress” in any fancy way, they go fancy with food. A lot of it is processed and not healthy at all. They do suffer from diabetes and such more often, at least in this community (in Ohio). So there are detriments, but raw milk and no vaccines are still protective.

      February 22nd, 2013 1:06 pm Reply
    • Tinad

      Same observations here in a large Amish community in WI. I know many of them, and additionally, have spoken with a local holistic health practitioner who works with the Amish. She says a large number of them are malnourished, eating harmful things from the SAD diet, especially numerous sweets, processed grains, and bad oils. One look in the offerings in their local dry goods store confirms it. But of course, they do drink raw milk and farm eggs, so I’m sure it helps some.

      March 1st, 2013 11:19 am Reply
  • Shanna Rangel via Facebook

    Just heard that most raw milk is from the wrong A1 cows…any thoughts/research you have to share.

    February 22nd, 2013 12:46 am Reply
  • Denise Hale Smith via Facebook

    Chiropractic care can also be a really great way to treat allergies believe it or not? My chiropractor also does nutrition consults.

    February 22nd, 2013 12:26 am Reply
  • Joan Hargrave Smith via Facebook

    As soon as my newest grandson was off formula (yuk) I started buying him raw milk. I wish I could afford to buy it for all of my grandchildren, or better yet, wish my kids would understand what a great investment it is!

    February 22nd, 2013 12:26 am Reply
  • Denise Hale Smith via Facebook

    http://www.realmilk.com

    February 22nd, 2013 12:23 am Reply
  • Denise Hale Smith via Facebook

    You can also check http://www.eatwild.com.

    February 22nd, 2013 12:23 am Reply
  • Denise Hale Smith via Facebook

    Raw unfiltered honey is GREAT for allergies from my understanding, as well as, many other health issues. I have been giving it to my children for years now, as well as, raw milk, and my kids are incredibly healthier than other vaccinated children! Raw milk is definitely a good thing, if you know and trust your farmer, it can be the difference between getting sick and not! Make sure you ask around for a recommended source. MOFGA is one for Maine only people, but there are many other listings on http://www.westonaprice.org. too. My kids are RARELY sick and although we do eat healthy, I attribute it to the raw milk for sure. Right outta the tap to the gut! Best way to drink it!

    February 22nd, 2013 12:21 am Reply
  • Paul Hardiman via Facebook

    Part of the allergens in dead dairy is that while pasteurization will kill bacteria, it will not destroy bacteria. The dead bacteria is still present and still toxic.

    February 21st, 2013 11:30 pm Reply
  • Allison Powell via Facebook

    I was told I shouldn’t be allergic to raw milk even though I’m allergic to non. My throat began to swell with the first sip. Wouldn’t recommend it for milk allergy sufferers.

    February 21st, 2013 11:09 pm Reply
    • Jamie

      Try raw goat’s milk, it’s less allergenic than cow. If that is still problematic you might be able to eat yogurt or kefir made from raw goat’s milk.

      February 22nd, 2013 2:10 pm Reply
  • Sara Brodt via Facebook

    Also…to Amanda who’s son has allergies-find a doc in your area who does the NAET method for treating allergies. It’s stunning how well it works. It’s energy therapy

    February 21st, 2013 11:07 pm Reply
  • Sara Brodt via Facebook

    Raw milk isn’t your best bet for eczema….start with fermented cod liver oil/butter oil blend.

    February 21st, 2013 11:06 pm Reply
    • HoustonMom

      Amen. The Green Pastures FCLO/HVBO helped clear up a molluscum contagium rash my 3 yo had for several months after trying several other holistic remedies. Great products.

      February 22nd, 2013 12:36 pm Reply
    • Karen

      I tried FCLO for my eczema and for some reason every time I take it, I feel nausea. Not right away but later in the day. At first I thought it was something else, but then after stopping and starting back up 4 more times a few days apart, same thing would happen. I can’t seem to figure out why.

      September 26th, 2013 8:00 pm Reply
  • Mindy Miller Lively via Facebook

    We switched to raw milk about a month ago. I had lactose intolerance & 2 kiddos with asthma/congestion, bed-wetting type reactions to pasteurized milk. It was even against my will to begin drinking it because I haven’t drank milk for probably 15 years. I have no intolerance and am shocked. My kids also haven’t had problems with bed wetting nor sinus issues. I have a special needs daughter with severe eczema and tried giving her raw milk and in hours she reacted with rash. I’m afraid to try again but I’ve read raw milk can reverse eczema. Is this true?

    February 21st, 2013 11:03 pm Reply
    • Jen

      Have you looked into the GAPS diet for your special needs daughter?

      February 22nd, 2013 12:21 pm Reply
    • Emily

      My daughter had eczema really bad as a toddler. We had no clue thar regular milk was causing her problem. I did a whole/raw foods study and class at my church and learned about the benefits of raw milk. We started drinking it and her break outs disappeared. That was about 5 years ago. She gets only occasional flare ups when she eats too many regular pasteurized milk products (regular cheeses, yogurts, etc.)… raw milk was a God-send for her and our entire family!

      April 16th, 2013 11:31 am Reply
  • Darla Cash via Facebook

    I grew up drinking raw milk from our cow, Masie. I now enjoy a robust immunity as I continue to drink it. Susan Waite Blanchfield–your daughter may have a sensitivity to casein, a milk protein. Its in milk–whether raw or not.

    February 21st, 2013 11:02 pm Reply
  • Matt Marie McClanahan via Facebook

    Wow!

    February 21st, 2013 10:58 pm Reply
  • Pati Gutierrez Smith via Facebook

    Amish children are also unvaccinated. I wonder if the Swiss children were vaccinated or not? And if the study took that into account. But happy to see the positives of raw milk being studied!

    February 21st, 2013 10:53 pm Reply
    • K

      I’d also be interested to know if there are differences in breastfeeding duration between the groups.

      Breastmilk is the ultimate raw milk for the human after all.

      February 22nd, 2013 3:56 am Reply
  • Rachel Stevens via Facebook

    can you cook with raw milk? does it damage all the goodies in it?

    February 21st, 2013 10:53 pm Reply
    • Jen

      I cook with my raw milk. I figure it can’t be as bad as industrial pasteurized and homogenized milk, even if I cook it, and it’s grass fed.

      February 22nd, 2013 12:19 pm Reply
      • Deb

        I use grass fed raw milk in everything, even cooking (scrambled eggs, breads, cheese making, etc.) The flavor is so much better. Will never go back to store milk ever!

        February 24th, 2013 1:02 pm Reply
  • François Tremblay via Facebook

    It’s a shame it is illegal in Quebec and Ontario, Canada…

    February 21st, 2013 10:37 pm Reply
  • François Tremblay via Facebook

    I really want raw milk, and I wanna give that to my family and future kids.

    February 21st, 2013 10:37 pm Reply
  • Health-e-links via Facebook

    Wish it was easier to get hold of!

    February 21st, 2013 10:36 pm Reply
  • Kali Shanti Park via Facebook

    I am excited to start getting raw milk hopefully next week!

    February 21st, 2013 10:27 pm Reply
  • Karen Lossing via Facebook

    Amanda, I would encourage you to seek the help of GAPS diet, we too also live on a farm and also breatfed for two years, and have used only raw milk and organic foods etc. But the GAPS diet has worked wonders for our Autistic Son. Yes we have healthy Children, but sometimes we have the same trials as those don’t feed their Children healthy foods…but God always provides us a way out of our trials :)

    February 21st, 2013 10:13 pm Reply
  • Shay Cosgrove via Facebook

    We drive to a farm about an hour away. We freeze about 2 months worth at a time. Thaws nicely. Just shake to mix it up. Super yummy and doesn’t bother my tummy at all!! (My mother and brother say they are lactose intolerant. Maybe they are just pasteuro-intolerant. (Let’s make up a new word!)

    February 21st, 2013 10:11 pm Reply
  • Amanda McConaghy via Facebook

    And yes, we do raw local honey from a farm 8 miles away too.

    February 21st, 2013 10:10 pm Reply
  • Amanda McConaghy via Facebook

    We must be in the 7%. We live on a farm and drink raw milk but my 6 year old is allergic to all grasses, trees, pollen, soy, and furry animals. :(. He was also breastfed for 2 years!

    February 21st, 2013 10:09 pm Reply
    • Kathy

      Has he been vaccinated at all. Did you consume only organic while pregnant with him…other factors I do believe. Keep up the good work. What you are doing IS beneficial.

      February 22nd, 2013 12:53 am Reply
    • Anna

      I’m sure it happens. My dad grew up in the 1920s on a farm in Kansas, of course drank raw milk, butter, etc. He had hay fever bad.

      February 22nd, 2013 1:11 pm Reply
      • Carol

        My grandfather and mother as well as several of my nieces and nephews have asthma. Although I can have wheezing spells sometimes during the year and dust and cigarette smoke are bad news, I only used medication for about 9 months after replacing drywall in my old house. My aunt lives in Springfield, IL. It is in the center of farm country (mostly corn and soybeans) and if I travel there in the summer it is awful for me. My grandfather and mother both grew up there (both before GMO’s). I however, believe that my reaction is directly related to the crops grown there. 3 or 4 years ago I had considered relocating there but changed my mind with my first summer visit. This is directly related to the previous comment and not to the post on raw milk. My daughter is currently testing out a source for raw milk. I was disappointed as it wasn’t the creamy whole milk I remember from going to my grandfather’s as a child. It was thin with what I assume was butterfat specks floating in it. I believe it is only from Jersey cows but they do give grain but no soy, mostly pasture and hay in winter. I know it is filtered but does that mean it then becomes like 2% or something? I prefer the consistency of Horizon whole milk.

        March 27th, 2013 9:39 pm Reply
        • Christie B.

          My guess is that either the diet is insufficient for good cream production, or else they are skimming the cream off the milk before selling. We have a Jersey cow, and while we don’t get as much cream as we might (because the calf is still on her), we still get a fair amount of cream (a 2 inches on top of a gallon of milk). Filtering is just done to remove any “floaters” in the milk, such as a hair from the cow’s udder. The cream goes through the filter.

          I would not drink raw milk from a cow fed grain, personally. The milk isn’t as high in quality vitamins, and also the gut bacteria in the cow isn’t as healthy as in a cow who is grass-fed. And, if the cow has e-coli, it’s a kind that can make a person sick. But, if the cow is grass-fed, the e-coli isn’t dangerous to a person (because grain makes a cow’s gut acidic, like our guts are, so any pathogenic bacteria in their gut will survive in ours, and potentially cause issues for us, but a grass-fed cow has an alkaline gut, and their gut pathogens can’t survive in our acidic gut environments).

          May 27th, 2013 2:57 pm Reply
          • Carol

            My suspicion was that they were keeping the cream. Thank you Christie for your comments. My sister was here last week from Missouri and brought me a gallon of her raw milk. She found a source about 6 weeks ago. It was delicious. I gave my daughter some and my son in law insisted it was spoiled and sour. I tasted it again and it was fine. Very creamy like I remember from when I was little. The info about the gut bacteria helped as I had heard things before but did not really understand. Now I do.

            August 19th, 2013 10:09 pm
  • Stacia Renee Marino via Facebook

    Hayfever can allegedly b treated with very local unpasturized honey!!!! I get ours from a farm about 60miles away.

    February 21st, 2013 10:09 pm Reply
  • Stacia Renee Marino via Facebook

    Realmilk.com has unpasturized dairy’s listed. I joined a coop that delivers unpasturized eggs and cow/goat/camel milk to my door. 100% organic. 100% grassfed beef. 100% perfect reputation. And it’s all delicious!!!! I give my 2yo the raw egg yolks to eat and he loves it.

    February 21st, 2013 10:08 pm Reply
  • Susan Waite Blanchfield via Facebook

    How local does the milk have to be. After close to a year on raw milk, my daughters hay fever is worse. We get our milk from several hundred miles away. Does that matter?

    February 21st, 2013 10:07 pm Reply
    • HoustonMom

      Have you tried RAW local honey? Check out her other posts on that. And the kefir, kombucha, and yogurt posts. You’ll find more info on Dr Mercola’s site & the WAPF site.
      Praying for your little one!

      February 22nd, 2013 12:30 pm Reply
    • Lindsey in AL

      My hay fever and “seasonal” allergies almost completely disappear when I don’t eat grains. I hope to start drinking raw milk soon so I can testify to how that affects my nose. I will say that regular dairy (especially ice cream) has me feeling cloggy and mucous-y within minutes (but not sneezy/drippy which is the primary symptom of my grain sensitivity.) I know it seems like a huge change, but my whole family feels so much better when we don’t eat grains. And it really isn’t any more labor-intensive than a WAPF-style diet, just maybe a bit more expensive because of the lack of cheap “filler.” Eventually I’d like to implement the GAPS diet for a good long while and then see how we react to grains, but for now we’re just grain-free most of the time (and then we pay for our “treats” through the nose, literally ;))

      February 23rd, 2013 2:29 pm Reply
      • Tinad

        I agree with Lindsay 100 percent. Same situation here. Grains are usually the culprit.

        March 1st, 2013 10:54 am Reply
    • sharon

      Have you tried local honey and raw goats milk? Many children have an allergy to cows milk.. Goats milk is closest in composition to human breast milk and is easier to digest.

      March 28th, 2013 5:14 am Reply
  • Dena Nau Royal via Facebook

    Buying a herd share sounds intimidating but it’s pretty easy. We love our milk!! My don doesn’t have the constant stuffy nose and stomach troubles he used to have with store bought milk.

    February 21st, 2013 10:07 pm Reply
  • Sara James via Facebook

    Makes sense!! I look at my children compared to others and not only are they much healthier as far as no allergies (well, youngest gets a rash from certain strawberries,) but they LOOK SO healthy! They drink lots of kefir and eat raw milk yoghurt, and I attribute that plus lots of butter, coconut oil, eggs, cream, wild pork and grassfed beef to their health. At the end of the day, I’m exhausted, but looking at my three angels every night makes every minute of work in the kitchen worth it. :)

    February 21st, 2013 10:07 pm Reply
    • Liz

      @sara–that’s exactly how I feel. Some days, 90% of my “free” time are spent in the kitchen cooking real food for my family. It is a difficult task some days (even though I LOVE cooking!) but the payoff is SOOOO worth it!!

      February 22nd, 2013 1:11 pm Reply
  • Svetlana Muraviov via Facebook

    Now to find out how to get raw milk legally lol
    This is great! My husband told me we’d have to buy a share of a cow to even consider getting raw milk, so we’ll have to get on that!

    February 21st, 2013 10:03 pm Reply
  • Tamara Roe via Facebook

    That doesn’t surprise me!

    February 21st, 2013 10:02 pm Reply
  • Dede Obasun Nesbitt via Facebook

    The reason we initially made the switch was because of skin allergies and my banishment of all things processed or far from its natural state. Thank you for the article.

    February 21st, 2013 10:01 pm Reply

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