Summary: At the turn of the twentieth century, sanitary conditions on many American dairy farms were deplorable, and it was not uncommon for humans to become infected by dangerous microbes transmitted in cow’s milk. While many officials pressed for sanitary regulations that would force producers to provide safe raw milk to the public, other powers pushed for another, less expensive option: pasteurization. Heating milk to high temperatures allowed germ-infested product to be sold to the public instead of being discarded. But while pasteurization did help neutralize many of the pathogens introduced by unscrupulous dairy farms, it had another, rather significant consequence that has gone long ignored. In short, pasteurizing milk destroys its nutritive value, as this collection of research abstracts from the 1930s shows. Whereas the studies report raw milk to promote growth, immunity, and excellent health in general, pasteurized milk was shown to do almost the complete opposite, inviting vitamin deficiency and disease in people who drink it, particularly infants. Even its calcium supply was shown to be highly unusable, making “scalded milk” one of the great impostors of modern food manufacturing. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 7, 1939.
Articles: Showing 1–6 of 105 Results
By Jean Bullitt Darlington
Summary: The first of a two-part report examining the bias in the popular press of the 1940s regarding the pros and cons of milk pasteurization. Darlington debunks several famous “scare” myths ballyhooed by the press, presenting each story as it was first reported and then as it appeared after some fact finding. This article, along with its sequel, is full of facts and examples of how health authorities grossly manipulated science and the public fear of food-borne epidemics to silence any support of certified raw milk. Includes eye-opening statistics from the U.S. Public Health Service regarding the number of outbreaks traced to both raw and pasteurized milk from 1922 to 1944. From The Rural New Yorker: The Business Farmer’s Paper. Reprint 28, 1947.
By Francis Pottenger Jr., MD
Summary: “There is no question that pasteurized milk and milk from poorly fed cattle produces osteoporosis in the experimental animal.” This quote by Dr. Francis Pottenger Jr., whose famous cat experiments in the 1930s established that malnutrition is inherited, sums up the great paradox of pasteurized milk: Americans drink it by the gallon believing they are strengthening their bones, but in truth it does the opposite, as shown by animal experiments going back decades. In this telling article, Dr. Pottenger discusses a study organized in 1933 by a farmer whose aim was to produce the finest milk possible from his cows. With the aid of a group of scientists, he discovered some basic principles of milk production that have been long ignored by the American dairy industry and health “experts” alike: not only does pasteurization destroy the nutritional value of milk, but the health of the cow greatly determines whether the milk it produces is beneficial or detrimental. “When the health of the cattle fails,” Dr. Pottenger explains, “the nutritional f actors of milk will decline, and partly metabolized food nutrients will produce sensitizations not only in the cow but in those who use the milk.” The implications of this statement are almost beyond belief. Included also is a description of the forgotten Wulzen anti-stiffness factor, a vitamin-like component of raw milk shown by early nutrition researchers to help prevent arthritis. From Modern Nutrition, 1962. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 27A.
By Jean Bullitt Darlington
Summary: Part II of a two-part series examining the myths and politics of milk pasteurization. In this article, Darlington reviews the efforts of the U.S. Public Health Service to strong arm communities throughout the country to adopt pasteurization, and he also examines closely the nature of milk production, pointing out that with the technology and equipment available at the time, safe raw-milk production was not just feasible but preferable. “Pasteurization is destructive of many of the essential nutritional values in milk. The only possible defense that could ever have been offered for [it],” the author concludes, “is that it did act as a temporary expedient pending the acquisition of more knowledge of methods ensuring a safe and clean supply.” With even better methods available today, the prohibition in many states of the sale of raw milk speaks less to public safety and more to the commercial dominance of the pasteurized milk industry. From The Rural New Yorker. Reprint 28-B, 1947.
By Walter C. Russell
Summary: One of the great mysteries of early nutritional research was the identity of a certain fat-soluble substance shown by Dr. Rosalind Wulzen to prevent irregular calcification of the tissues. Dr. Wulzen first observed the effects of a deficiency of this factor in experiments she was conducting on guinea pigs, whose wrists stiffened as a result of a lack of the substance. Upon feeding the animals some fresh raw cream, she found that the animals’ wrists returned to normal—the calcification having reversed—and she thus named the substance the “anti-stiffness factor,” though in many circles it became known simply as the Wulzen factor. The following excerpt from Stanford University’s Annual Review of Biochemistry for 1944 introduces readers to this “new fat-soluble factor,” the precise identity of which remains debated to this day. (Dr. Royal Lee proposed that the Wulzen factor was none other than Dr. Weston Price’s famous “Activator X.”) One fact about the Wulzen factor remains unequivocal, however: while raw cream and milk ridded Dr. Wulzen’s guinea pigs of their calcification stiffness, pasteurized cream and milk did not, as the investigator herself reported on several occasions. This fact should give anyone studying nutrition pause about what we think we know about milk, given that virtually all studies of it over the past seventy-five years or so have been on pasteurized versions. (To learn more about the nutritional differences between raw and pasteurized milk, see “Abstracts on the Effect of Pasteurization on the Nutritional Value of Milk.”) From the Annual Review of Biochemistry, 1944. Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research reprint 127.
By Hugo Krueger, PhD
Summary: An authoritative, fully-referenced report on the mysterious and famous Wulzen factor, an anti-stiffness nutrient found in the cream of raw milk and in fresh molasses. The author writes, “In 1941 Wulzen and Bahrs reported that guinea-pigs fed raw whole milk grew excellently and at autopsy showed no abnormality of any kind. Guinea-pigs on pasteurized milk rations did not grow as well and developed a definite syndrome, the first sign of which was wrist stiffness. On pasteurized skim milk the syndrome increased in severity until the animals finally died. There was great emaciation and weakness before death.” Doctors such as Royal Lee and Francis Pottenger, Jr., had long studied this anti-arthritic factor, which was never accepted by orthodox medicine and regretfully remains ignored to this day. From American Journal of Physical Medicine. Reprint 81, 1955.