Milk Products and Postmodern Humans: Public Education Fundamentals

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DOI: 10.4236/fns.2011.23030   PDF   HTML   XML   3,876 Downloads   7,602 Views   Citations

Abstract

Milk production in ruminants necessitates renovation of least available plant materials into most enriched nutrients. This involves pregastric microbial rumen fermentation of plant cells and production of volatile fatty acids (VFA) as substrates for mammary milk lactose, fat and protein synthesis. Thus, milk contains numerous bioactive substances functioning beyond solely their nutritive value. Essential amino acids, specialized casein, lactalbumins and globulins, peptides, nucleosides, nucleotides, unsaturated fatty acids such as conjugated linoleic acids, sphingomyelins, fat soluble vitamins and minerals of mainly calcium are principal examples. Whey proteins are insulinotropic, medium chain fatty acids improve insulin sensitivity, and calcium favorably influences fat distribution. Peptides and calcium can reduce blood pressure and cholesterol. Dairy consumption benefits folate availability and lowers blood homocystein and heart attack risks. Very early (< 3 mo of age) neonatal cow milk intake has been related to insulin-dependent diabetes. Non- breast milk intake during early stages of life is unarguably uncommon. Modern nutrition does in no standard circumstances authorize feeding such quite young neonates non-breast milks. Milk sufficiency for neonatal brain, nervous and immune systems, and bone development and tissue growth for even up to 2 yr without major needs for alternative foods is an evolutionary verification for its irreplaceable role in human nutrition. However, the increasing concerns of cardiovascular disorders, hypertension, and related complexities in modern populations due to improper nutrition have contributed to forming a fallacious public perception about milk in general and milk fat in particular as a possible risk factor. Despite such a functional nature of milk in improving human health, the confusion exists where education is suboptimal. Insightful education on milk science must accompany research to enable the public to discern a pseudo- science that unconsciously disregards milk as an animal fat food with serious health risks. With limited saturated fat intake from non-milk sources, increased milk consumption could bear a multitude of positive impacts on health even with high fat content. Milk is a collection of bioactive substances with unique nutritional properties that synergistically optimize the health of mind and physics in different age groups.

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A. Nikkhah, "Milk Products and Postmodern Humans: Public Education Fundamentals," Food and Nutrition Sciences, Vol. 2 No. 3, 2011, pp. 222-224. doi: 10.4236/fns.2011.23030.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

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