Wednesday, April 26, 2006


While scanning Google news this morning I came across this newspaper headline: Avoiding Milk During Pregnancy Linked to Lower Birth Weight, with deeper down a few dozen more headlines on the subject, including these:

Milk's a must for mums-to-be
Avoiding milk 'leads to smaller babies'
Drinking too little milk 'can harm unborn baby'
Pregnant women 'need to drink milk'
Milk 'essential in pregnancy'
More Reasons For Pregnant Mothers To Drink Milk
Study: Pregnant Women Must Drink Plenty of Milk
Pregnant women who drink less milk risk low birth weight babies
Limiting milk can hamper Babies’ Growth

Only one headline had gotten the elemental fact of the matter right: Vit D linked to baby birth weight. Simply that. Seems more and more like the dead-tree media, under threat from bloggers and the internet in general, are increasingly resorting to scary tabloid-type headlines, much as the dairy industry is resorting to recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone (rBGH).

Vitamin D intake was the key point to the story, not milk. So why all the emphasis on milk? In Canada (where the study was done), milk is fortified with vitamin D, but there are plenty of other sources of that vitamin, none mentioned in these articles. Milk of any kind is fundamentally an unnatural food for adults, to say nothing of cow's milk for pregnant humans and their babies...

So I wondered why all the scare headlines: why all this obvious pushing of milk on a trusting (?) audience? How unbiased was this study, anyway? So I went to the study itself and waaay at the very bottom was this statement: "Funding sources for our study included the Dairy Farmers of Canada..."


Oddly, in all this deeply heartfelt journalistic concern for mothers and their infants, none of the news articles mentioned a study on, say, bi-weekly shots of rBGH, or the use of other hormones and antibiotics to keep cows alive and producing, not a word on Monsanto (which means 'Sacred Mountain,' ironically), sewage sludge in cow feed, or all the many other detrimental aspects of milk; nor did they refer to non-organic milk. Let alone the famous Milk Letter.

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