(Editor’s note: In part one of this series (link) Kent professed his love for milk, introduced us to some cows and (cue the scary music) the GMO connection. In part two (link), Kent detailed the case study of his friend’s dairy, GMO hay and similar reactions between cows and humans. Kent also introduced (cue the mysterious music) the depletion of important minerals such as calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper and zinc. In part three, we dove into the GMO geopolitical waters. Here in part four, we circle back through the farm to essential oils.)
In this part I promised that I would talk about corn and soybeans, two very widely used base food "stuffs" and the two most planted and harvested crops in the United States by volume and acreage.
The ingredients derived from these two crops are used in almost every and any processed food product. These crops are no different than alfalfa in being subjected to industrial farming practices. In fact more of these two crops have a higher percentage of them being GMO'ed than alfalfa. So everything negative that applies to alfalfa applies to corn and soybeans, only with more gusto.
Of course corn produces the dreaded high fructose corn syrup. Then there’s simple old sugar. I didn't really want to bring this one in because of time and space in this article. The primary source of white sugar here in the US, sugar beets, are subjected to the same GMO-based seeds, herbicides, insecticides and commercial oils-based fertilizers as the corn and soybeans.
This is important because when you just consider the amount of ingredients from corn, soybeans and sugar beets we consume on a daily basis, things such as milk soon becomes an attractive food option. (I will detail this later in this section. If we need to go into more detail on these food based products, then we ought to just start a new series.) The sad downside to this is that much of the milk that we consume is largely sourced from cows that are fed GMO'ed, conventionally/industrialized farmed corn and soybeans.
Now I want to get back to some issues with milk. I can find all kinds of people that will trash talk milk all day long. They can come up with all sorts of ideas and justifications for why anyone older than a small baby should not even consume milk. I understand those arguments and respect the individuals’ right to have their opinions. But, and here is the big but, the arguments just don't float the boat.
One of the big things I have heard is that milk is nothing but pus; i.e., a high level of white blood cells. If you take milk from any animal that has a lot of infection in their system, then yes, it does contain "pus;" i.e., a high level of white blood cells. The key here is that they don't mention is that they use the data from a very sick animal(s) to support their argument. In the milk production world, this is referred to as a high somatic cell count. Milk that is sold commercially is tested for these levels before it is even unloaded off of the truck.
The milk processing facilities and even the government are pushing those standards to the point if there is a sick cow in the herd, she will cause the count to rise and the milk to be rejected (at least at fluid milk plants). Some other types of plants will allow a little higher somatic cell count.
Many production dairies will test each and every animal on a monthly basis for a long list of issues. Cows with a high somatic cell count is usually culled because they can end up being costly to the milk producer, including cutting into the producer’s quality bonus.
Of course you will have some that produce “bad milk," but they weed themselves out rather quickly by going out of business.
Another issue is Recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone, rBST or BST for short. This is a synthetic hormone produced by several companies to artificially boost milk production, by being administered on a regular basis.
The cows generally produce 10% to 15% more milk.
However, there have been many heated arguments in the public if the milk is safe. The "industrial" companies that produce these drugs have gone to great length to make sure the public "knows" that milk produced using BST is safe. These measures have included going to court to get their point of view across on the labeling and the massive use of public relations firms. I figure that if they go to these measures, then it is a sure sign that something is not right. Sort of like the phrase, "We are from the government and we are here to help."
The number of milk producers using BST is dwindling quickly so, for the most part, it is becoming a non-issue. One of the drawbacks is that yes, the cows did produce more, but they ate a lot more too. So higher feed prices and lower milk prices quickly make it a bad business decision to use BST.
But then there’s what actually happens to the cows, which is akin to a human being on meth. They go like wild fire, work 30 hours a day and on and on. Then one day ... they crash and burn. They are done for. Usually a cow might last two years and maybe three at the outside. Normal life span of the average dairy cow on a farm that is ethical about her treatment is 10 to 12 years. By the end of the second or third year, she in nothing but a
rack of bones, sick and basically a zombie. Really she is and that is about the best way to put it. So just about all of the ethical milk producers quit using the stuff and those that aren't ethical, well, they don't last long anyway.
Back to milk and the use of it. Milk is just like any other food. Over time, we as humans have adapted to the use of milk and milk products. If someone can't use milk or milk products they are considered to have some sort of health issue. I know all of the arguments for use non-use of milk. But there is another side of the equation – milk is a decent and usable food. Milk can come from many sources, cows, goats, sheep, water buffalo, camels, horses and the list goes on. Since the quality of the milk has a direct relationship to the quality of what the animal is eating, milk can be a very low quality food or a very high quality food.
In real simple terms here, very simple terms, OK? The animal takes infood, it is digested, converted and organized into usable nutrients and those nutrients sort of makes a beeline to the milk collection point, the udder. From there it is collected and made into various products. Some is packaged into simple fluid milk.
From what creditable research and science has proven is the best milk to buy is the whole milk. The whole no-fat or low-fat craze is just that, a craze that has no merit. In fact it is actually detrimental to human health.
Yogurt is another milk product. I like some yogurts. But the Greek yogurt craze is just about the biggest joke that I have ever seen. There is no standard for Greek yogurt. They can make anything they want and label it as Greek and it is now Greek. One of the best things about milk is the whey. The whey is a fantastic food in and of itself. In most Greek yogurts, the whey is removed. You are actually better off buying and using cheese than most yogurts. However, there are other products that show merit, such as kefir and such.
You may be doubting me about now, but I do have firsthand knowledge in these areas. I know what actually happens on the farm and in the milk processing plants.
Oh, almost forgot about the various nut and grain milks. (Do we really want to go there? We have to.) I am in and out of the milk processing plants all the time that also produce a very large amount of nut and grain milks. I have been through the plants many times.
The ingredients on the product say "evaporated cane sugar." Of course it must be good … cane ... something romantic about that I guess. After all, compared to sugar beets, sugar cane does sound more romantic. By the way, they have the GMO stuff and chemical sprays on that stuff too. But moving on, guess what the "cane" sugar is?? Drum roll.. big sacks of plain old white sugar beet sugar. Plus they have all sorts of GMO soybean oil and high fructose corn syrup. So do we really want to go there???? Besides, my friends that work in those plants say that if a person saw what those nut and grain "milks" do to the packaging equipment and pipelines, you wouldn't touch the stuff. They also add that milk is so much cleaner and causes less problems.
But to make a long story short, milk is like any food product, the quality of what goes in has a direct relationship to what comes out in the milk. But as a friend of mine, who is a M.D. and a D.O. as well, (he has a holistic practice), told me when I asked him this question: “So tell me what is better, this or that?” Answer: “You people have to get away from this either/or crap. You have to look at it in terms of what is the better option of what is available.”
So when it comes to milk, it is a good product. Raw milk produced under pristine conditions is better than processed store milk. Milk in the store is better than say nut or grain milks (they really aren't milk, but read: "beverage"). Milk is certainly better than soda pop. Regular soda pop is definitely better than diet soda pop. Fresh orange juice is better than concentrated juice. But then you have some that say that the juice is bad in and of itself. I disagree with that idea. But of course, fresh juice is better than canned juice. DUHH! Actually, most of the nutrition and what makes the juice nutritious is in the rind. Which is where the Orange Essential Oil is anyway.
Clean water is better than dirty water. But as my doctor friend said, dirty water is better than no water if you are out in the desert and on the edge of kidney failure due to dehydration. Do you see the picture I am painting? We all have to do the best we can in this day and age.
So what is the best solution? Food is always best if produced under the best of conditions. That is almost impossible under today's conditions. I say almost, but definitely not impossible. If you have a well-cared-for pasture and have the cow graze that grass, treat her very well, then the milk you get from her is very healthy (it isn't pus, lol). Other foods that are produced under very good conditions are, without question, very good for you as compared to spoiled food or those picked unripened.
Milk is no different than those other foods. We need supplements because as a general rule we just aren't getting nutrients from our foods today. In some situations the toxins are preventing the assimilation of the nutrients, even supplements, so it doesn't matter what you do, you just aren't cutting it. The very same thing happens with the soil and various nutrients when applied. We are so much like the soil that it isn't even funny. But then again, a term comes to mind "from dust we came, unto dust we return."
I would like to discuss some elements of food production, but this discussion is too long as it is, so let’s end this one and move on to other issues. I will bring some good information that can give you something else to work with in the future. I will do some stuff on gardening. All of us can do gardening in some form. That very act helps us physically as well as emotionally. Also keep in mind that fall time is when you start your garden for next year.
So as promised, what essential oil should we be using? A whole long list. Any oil from a plant that we would normally ingest as a spice or food will do wonders. Essential oils are subjected to the same situations as any other crop produced. But even a "lower" quality oil is better than no oil at all, with the exception of synthetic oils, of course.
Written by Kent King.