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Our God is an Awesome God

April 25, 2010 5 comments

mir·a·cle

[mir-uh-kuhl]

1.an effect or extraordinary event in the physical world that surpasses all known human or natural powers and is ascribed to a supernatural cause.

2.such an effect or event manifesting or considered as a work of God.

3.a wonder; marvel.

Do you believe in miracles? I used to be of the camp that miracles happened but not to me. I knew people & knew people who knew people or people who knew of people who had experienced miracles, but not me. I have never had any first hand experience with miracles until recently. I want to share my miraculous story with you. Some of you may laugh, some may not believe me, and some may think there was just an error in my original diagnosis but for that one person that may find hope in my story I am willing to put this out there for the whole world to see. Our God performs miracles. It’s our job to ask for these things because they aren’t just handed to us. Yes God knows our hearts, our needs, our wants but we have to ask.

I never felt like I had the right to ask for something miraculous. After all, who am I? I rededicated my life to Christ approximately 2 years ago and I have grown so much over those two years. But I still witness many around me with a deeper or more profound relationship with our God. People would always tell me to “have faith,” or to “trust God.” And I really wanted to do these things but I always felt like God heard everyone’s prayers but mine. I felt lower on the totem pole, the food chain, what have you. I put God in a box and I just banked on the fact that God did in fact hear my prayers but I had to be better in order for him to love me enough to answer them – NOT TRUE.

Here’s the reason you followed this link – the story of my miracle.

About 3 months ago I consulted an elder at my church asking if he knew anyone in dentistry that could help me with some problems I had been having for quite some time. I am uninsured and I was looking for someone to be sensitive to that at billing time. I was referred by the elder to Dr. Frank Melazzo in Inverness. He was great! He got me in and out in a flash and said that he would love to help me. However the severity of my case was beyond his expertise. I had a bad tooth that had broken 5 months prior. I thought I’d get a filling or possibly at worst a root canal and be on my way. No such luck. Dr. Melazzo x-rayed my bad tooth (and a neighboring tooth) for free and then explained to me that the bad tooth would need to be extracted at the expert hands of an oral surgeon and the tooth right next to it would need a root canal but not until the bad tooth was extracted. I have had a lot of dental work done in the past ending with 5 molars surgically removed and the bad tooth was in fact another molar. I wept in that dental chair in front of my 7yr old nephew who was holding my 3month old daughter and I couldn’t stop. I had finally found someone willing to help me and his hands were tied. I was devastated.

As time went on I learned to deal with the pain. No hot stuff, no cold stuff, rinsing after brushing with warm water, warming mouthwash under the running warm water, chewing only on one side of my mouth, etc. It was just awful.

Fast Forward 2 and a half months and I am at home the Saturday before  Easter Sunday when the tooth pain literally blinds me and brings me to my knees. I have a high tolerance for pain just so you know. I have had 3 8lb babies with no drugs and this tooth made me weep. The following day my family arrived at church after a stop by the pharmacy where I purchased Ibuprofen, Kanka, Oragel, and every other OTC tooth pain med. They all seemed to work for about twenty minutes. I lasted about 5 minutes into the church service when I handed our baby to my husband and went to the restroom to splash my face with cold water to clean off the sweat that was a result of the pain. I went outside and sat on a bench for fresh air not sure if I was going to pass out or not.

Two friends approached me and prayed for me. Within about 10 minutes the pain subsided to a dull roar. I could see straight again. Monday I learned about UAB’s school of Dentistry and how they offered dental services at a rate which was about 1/2 that of other dentists. I made an appointment and went down there. I’ll skip all the boring stuff in between then and now and get to the really exciting stuff!

I went in there telling them I had a tooth that I needed extracted and a tooth that needed a root canal. X-rays were taken and they told me that they could save my tooth! They said the tooth that needed extraction actually only needed a root canal and that they could do it! I was so excited. So they did the root canal over the course of 2 days (4 hours total). The infection was so bad that once they got half way done they had to stop because the anesthesia wouldn’t work due to the inflammation. But they finally finished it up after a second appointment. I was there again this past Thursday for them to finish the root canal job and they decided to look at that tooth neighboring it, the one that I was told needed a root canal by Dr. Melazzo.  The dental student started cleaning out the decay and about half way through she told me it looked really bad. She said it was more than likely going to need a root canal. I knew about this but financially I really wasn’t prepared to shell out another $600 on a root canal.

Not knowing what else to do I started praying. I prayed like I have never prayed before. All of my prayers before have been like a wish in a well while I toss a coin into the water and just wait for the plunk knowing there was a 50/50 chance. This prayer was different. I believe it was spirit led. I laid in that chair commanding healing over that tooth, I prayed that God would heal that tooth and that a simple filling would seal the deal. About 10 minutes later the dental student told me that she was pretty sure my tooth was going to need a root canal based off of my x-ray and what she saw but that it somehow looked as though it was just before the pulp and a filling should do the job! I was in SHOCK. I can’t even tell you the feelings of joy, surprise and hope that flooded me. A tear rolled down my cheek and she asked me if I was okay. I told her I was the happiest I had ever been. She was of course confused so I explained to her my prayers just moments before and she said, “Well it worked.”

This may not seem like a big deal to many of you but this was a huge breakthrough for me. I have been going through the motions and staying faithful and prayerful and doing what God says to do but it never really clicked for me. It is always so much easier to have faith for someone else. It is easier to believe that God will heal someone else. But I am here to tell you right now that when you reach up to God he reaches back down to you. If you only have it in you to reach up 10% God reaches down the other 90%. Our God does perform miracles and I got to experience it firsthand.

So now I get to be one of those crazy people talking about the miracle in my life while people look at me like I have 5 heads, try to decide if they still want to be friends with me, and while others think the same about me as I did about those who testified their personal miracles to me before I experienced my own.

I am looking back on my life and realizing that this wasn’t my first miracle from God. There are no coincidences, there is no such thing as good luck. But there is a God, and He is real, and He can hear you and He wants to heal. Praise God for His mercy, His grace and His love, praise God for his miracles sent from above.

Categories: Uncategorized

In Memory of Abigail Hope Dahlen

April 16, 2010 3 comments

The Dahlen family lost their daughter in a tragic accident on Sunday, April 11th, 2010. Not knowing what to do to honor this sweet child I just did what I do in times of happiness and sorrow alike…I wrote something. My heart is overflowing with sadness for this family. My prayers are ceaseless for them and my thoughts are with them constantly.

Angelic is your face
Beauty in its rarest form
Innocent and pure
God holds you in his arms
Always in our hearts
Inspiring us to love
Looking down upon us in Heaven from above

Hearts long for your laughter
Only a memory away
Precious child how we will miss you
Each and every single day

Abigail Hope

Categories: Uncategorized

When do I bathe my newborn?

March 29, 2010 4 comments

A lot of Moms aren’t sure when to bathe their newborn babies. Many people wait until the umbilical cord stump falls off. Some lose that first bath experience to hospital staff. I have some very important info on why Mothers should wait to bathe their babies and I want to share it.

A bath will lower the baby’s body temperature which may then prompt hospital staff to insist on placing the baby in a warmer until its temperature rises sufficiently. Be aware that if you do choose to delay bathing your newborn or refuse a formal bath entirely, hospital staff may treat your baby as a biohazard. In the case of a homebirth, this is a non-issue.

Comfort measures:
I test the temp with my wrist, not my fingers as my hands have become desensitized to temperature over time. Try it – you’ll feel a difference in the water temp just going from your hand to your wrist. I turn the heat on and close the bathroom door to keep it nice and warm in there. Have a cup, tear-free baby wash and a rag handy. Don’t bathe your baby right after a feeding or when they’re hungry or tired.

Bathe with your baby:
There is nothing wrong with getting into the bath with your baby. I did this with my first for every bath and I would hand her off to hubby when she was all done. I just bent my legs and she sat there, propped on them with her bottom resting on my pelvic area. My babies always loved when I got in the bath with them, then if they get upset you can just pull them right up to the breast and nurse through the bathing if need be.

My firstborn was bathed in the hospital against my wishes after a transfer from the birth center. My last two children were both water births so they had a bit of bath on their birthdays and I did not bathe them again until 2 weeks or so.

Some Moms worry about they baby crying during the bath or hating it all together. I say do whatever keeps them happy. At 1-2 weeks it is so hard to hear them cry (hormonally). No need for undue stress. My girls love the bath but I don’t know how much in part of that is from being welcomed into the world that way and how much of that is just their personality.

Here’s a tidbit on why you should wait to bathe your baby AND avoid artificial rupture of your membranes (having your water “broken”).

You’ll need to scroll down a bit to find the heading for:
ANTIMICROBIAL PROPERTIES OF AMNIOTIC FLUID AND VERNIX CASEOSA ARE SIMILAR TO THOSE FOUND IN BREAST MILK

Tests (Western analysis and immunochemistry) revealed that lysozyme, lactoferrin, human neutrophil peptides 1–3, and secretory leukocyte protease inhibitor were present in the amniotic fluid samples and in organized granules embedded in the vernix samples. These immune substances were tested using antimicrobial growth inhibition assays and found to be effective in inhibiting the growth of common perinatal pathogens, including group B. Streptococcus, K. pneumoniae, L. monocytogenes, C. albicans, and E. coli.

The authors point out that the innate immune proteins found in vernix and amniotic fluid are similar to those found in breast milk. As the baby prepares for extrauterine life, pulmonary surfactant (a substance produced by the maturing fetal lungs) increases in the amniotic fluid, resulting in the detachment of vernix from the skin. The vernix mixes with the amniotic fluid and is swallowed by the growing fetus. Given the antimicrobial properties of this mixture, the authors conclude that there is “considerable functional and structural synergism between the prenatal biology of vernix caseosa and the postnatal biology of breast milk” (p. 2095). They also suggest that better understanding of these innate host defenses may prove useful in preventing and treating intrauterine infection.

Routine artificial rupture of membranes increases the likelihood of intrauterine infection because it eliminates the physical barrier (the amniotic sac) between the baby and the mother’s vaginal flora. This study suggests an additional mechanism for the prevention of infection when the membranes remain intact: A baby bathed in amniotic fluid benefits from antimicrobial proteins that are found in the fluid and in vernix caseosa.

The results of this study also call into question the routine use of some newborn procedures. Early bathing of the baby removes vernix, which contains antimicrobial proteins that are active against group B. streptococcus and E. coli. Delaying the bath and keeping the newborn together with his or her mother until breastfeeding is established may prevent some cases of devastating infections caused by these bacteria. The fact that preterm babies tend to have more vernix than babies born at or after 40 weeks might mean that healthy, stable preterm babies derive even greater benefit from staying with their mothers during the immediate newborn period.

Finally, this study illustrates how the normal physiology of pregnancy and fetal development is part of a continuum that extends beyond birth to the newborn period. The immunologic similarities between amniotic fluid, vernix, and breast milk provide further evidence that successful initiation of breastfeeding is a critical part of the process of normal birth.

So you see it is for the child’s benefit to wait a while and not rush into that first bath on the day of birth or even in the first week of life. I hope you have found this information useful.

Make sure you take pics of that first bath! And good luck!

Stop the Abuse of OxyContin

March 29, 2010 Leave a comment

Contrary to FALSE CLAIMS THAT LESS THAN 1% of PATIENTS GET ADDICTED, the CT Attorney General has stated the addiction rate is around 13% but some feel it is as high as 30%. All Patients (100%) do become physically dependent.

Two years ago, the company Purdue Pharma L.P. had to pay $635 million to settle federal charges that it underplayed the drug’s potential for abuse.

Is there really an EPIDEMIC? In recent years there has been a 556% increase in the sales of oxycodone. According to an Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) fact sheet, an estimated 1.6 million Americans used prescription-type pain relievers for non-medical reasons for the first time in 1998.

Share your experience with Oxycontin with us. Do you know someone who is addicted? Thinking about using? Have you had a personal experience with Oxycontin? Your story could be the one that changes or SAVES someones life. All authors will remain anonymous unless they wish otherwise. Thank you all for your support in promoting awareness of this deadly drug. Send your story to oxystories@gmail.com

Join us on Facebook where there are true stories of addicts, recovered/recovering addicts, pharmacy technicians and many others with a story to share! You will also find valuable links for help with addiction, information about the drug and it’s addictive nature and many other valuable resources.
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Pregnancy & Childbirth Are Normal

February 26, 2010 2 comments

This post is here for information about birth and birth procedures. Feel free to add any links that you feel may be helpful!

I’ll start off with an encouraging tidbit that I wrote myself. I hope you all find this helpful!

Giving birth and giving birth away

Childbirth is one of the most empowering events in a woman’s life. It is an opportunity to trust in the nature of how we were designed and what we were created for. It is a time to revel in our beauty, our flawless construction for creating life. It is a time to celebrate, not to numb our bodies and our minds out of fear. Giving birth is a very special event that each woman should remember always as a pivotal moment in life. It should never be reflected on in regret. Yet so many women are experiencing mourning after their childbirth experience because they gave birth away.

Doctor’s Voices – Stuart Fischbein, MD

I’ve been wondering what I could do to help our friends in Australia as well as here in the US where midwifery is constantly under threat…where midwifery and women and baby’s right are being trampled…hear the truth from the doctors who are bravely speaking out. I present “Doctor’s Voices” as a way to support midwifery AND the doctors who support the midwifery model of care/mother-baby focused birth and reform of our current system.

Restricting oral fluid and food intake during labor

Since the evidence shows no benefits or harms, there is no justification for the restriction of fluids and food in labour for women at low risk of complications.

Intrapartum antibiotics for known maternal Group B streptococcal colonization

This review finds that giving antibiotics is not supported by conclusive evidence.

Music for pain relief

Listening to music reduces pain intensity levels and opioid requirements, but the magnitude of these benefits is small and, therefore, its clinical importance unclear.

Maternal positions and mobility during first stage labor

Here is evidence that walking and upright positions in the first stage of labour reduce the length of labour and do not seem to be associated with increased intervention or negative effects on mothers’ and babies’ wellbeing. Women should be encouraged to take up whatever position they find most comfortable in the first stage of labor.

Enemas during labor

The evidence provided by the three included RCTs shows that enemas do not have a significant effect on infection rates such as perineal wound infection or other neonatal infections and women’s satisfaction. This evidence does not support the routine use of enemas during labour; therefore, such practice should be discouraged.

Routine perineal shaving on admission in labor

There is insufficient evidence to recommend perineal shaving for women on admission in labor.

Immersion in water in labor and birth

Evidence suggests that water immersion during the first stage of labour reduces the use of epidural/spinal analgesia. There is limited information for other outcomes related to water use during the first and second stages of labour, due to intervention and outcome variability. There is no evidence of increased adverse effects to the fetus/neonate or woman from labouring in water or waterbirth. The fact that use of water immersion in labour and birth is now a widely available care option for women threatens the feasibility of a large, multicentre randomised controlled trial.

Position in the second stage of labor for women without epidural anesthesia

The tentative findings of this review suggest several possible benefits for upright posture, with the possibility of increased risk of blood loss greater than 500 ml. Women should be encouraged to give birth in the position they find most comfortable. Until such time as the benefits and risks of various delivery positions are estimated with greater certainty, when methodologically stringent trials’ data are available, women should be allowed to make informed choices about the birth positions in which they might wish to assume for delivery of their babies.

Routine Newborn Baby Care Procedures

Choices for newborn baby care procedures begin immediately at birth. The best preparation is to have considered them and decided beforehand what procedures you desire (or don’t want) for your newborn. For a hospital birth, there are numerous routine procedures which can be administered, delayed or even refused…Many parents don’t realize the impact that these procedures can have on their newborn child…Another critical point to remember is that you can and absolutely have the right to receive information about each and every procedure that will be performed, as well as the right to either request the procedure be performed in your room or that a parent/guardian accompany the newborn for each one. This includes weighing, measuring and the pediatrician’s evaluation of the baby – all can be performed right there in the mother’s room. Remember, your first responsibility is to the welfare of your child, not to the comfort of the hospital staff nor arbitrary hospital policies.

The most commonly performed routine newborn baby care procedures to consider are:
Suctioning
Delayed Cord Clamping Vs. Immediate Cord Clamping
Newborn Vitamin K Injection
PKU Test
Silver Nitrate or Antibiotic Eye Ointment
Hep B Vaccine
To Bathe or Not to Bathe
Circumcision

Benefits And Risks Of Episiotomy

The benefits and risks of episiotomy are very disproportionate. When compared together, the research supports that routine episiotomy should be banished as a practice of the past. Even ACOG’s positions is that the research does not support the practice of routine episiotomy.

The Cascade of Intervention

Normal, natural birth sets the stage for problem-free breastfeeding—what nature intended—while a complicated, intervention-intensive labor and birth set the stage for problems.

The cascade of intervention

December 17, 2009 6 comments

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I’m angry, I’m sad, I am frustrated as hell! I want to scream from the rooftops in complete and utter disgust for the misinformation women receive from Doctors regarding ignoring the spontaneous actions that occur in the natural process of childbirth. “Let’s induce you and get things going,” “You’ll be holding your baby within an hour if you let me…” Here it comes. Yes, here comes my stance on inductions for non-medical reasons. Here come the facts. The things your Doctor doesn’t tell you!

A due date is an estimated due date and can be off by as much as 2 weeks (in either direction – early or late). Women need to be prepared for what may happen during an induction. First of all, breaking your water will not speed anything along unless you are already in a good pattern of labor. So more than likely the Doc will break your water then want to give you drugs to force your body to have contractions (these drugs WILL NOT dilate your cervix). The drugs they use to induce labor only cause contractions, they do not dilate the cervix (which is what has to happen in order for the baby to come out). There is a risk of your baby going into distress from strong, chemically induced contractions without dilating. Babies will only be able to withstand chemically induced contractions for so long before it stresses their little system. You are putting your birth on a time table by agreeing to an induction. Once your water is broken you have roughly 12 hours (I believe it is 12 hours at most hospitals but it may be 24) to have your baby. If you haven’t had your baby within 12-24hrs hours they call it “failure to progress” and will perform a major abdominal surgery to remove them and call it an “emergency” even though they caused it by artificially breaking your water and trying to force your body into something it wasn’t ready to do.

Most Docs tell you they will induce you because it is easier for them - NOT for you. And that’s what’s up ladies. Birth is easier for them when they are in control.

So now in “labor” with artificial contractions you will more than likely receive pain management drugs because chemically induced contractions are much stronger and harder than the contractions the body naturally produces. The method used for relief will most likely be a catheter placed in your spinal cord, also known as the epidural.

I just want to say here that I am all about an informed decision. Every woman has the right to decide for herself how she chooses to birth her baby. But I have heard WAY too many stories from mothers saying their doctor never discussed these risks with them so I am putting it out there for all the world to see.

There are risks involved with the placement of a catheter into your spine (epidural). Yes it is common, yes it happens everyday but it is not without serious risks to you and your child!! Here are some things the doctors may not discuss with you before offering up this drug to you as if it were a simple Aspirin or Tylenol.

The epidural can cause permanent numbness in your back and other parts of your body. It, like the induction drugs can also cause fetal heart rate decelerations (fetal distress). This can occur following the use of epidurals because the mothers blood pressure gets so low that blood cannot be adequately pumped into the uterus to deliver oxygen to the baby. Also, trauma to blood vessels can occur as a result of epidural anesthesia. Bleeding in the spinal column and unintentional placement of the catheter into an artery or vein occurs in 67 women out of every 1000 epidurals. The catheter actually escapes outside of where it is supposed to go 1 to 6% of the time. Hemorrhages can occur around the spinal cord and even within the skull following epidural anesthesia. These are associated with persistent backaches or headaches. Failure to treat these problems usually results in permanent paralysis. Surgery must be performed within 8 hours of the onset of paralysis or the prognosis is poor. Chronic subdural hematoma has resulted from epidural anesthesia and has even presented as post-partum psychosis!!

Infections can develop at the site of injection of the epidural. Bacterial meningitis can occur from contamination during placement of the epidural. An abscess can also form at the site where the epidural catheter is placed. Backache after an epidural is a common complication. Back pain commonly occurs after epidural anesthesia (18.9% of the time). Upper back pain can happen at some distance from the site where the epidural is injected. The back pain can last very long-term. Nineteen percent of women have long-term backache after epidural anesthesia. It probably results from a combination of its effects on the nerves and from extreme postures and stretching that occurs after the epidural during labor. Low back pain after epidural anesthesia for childbirth is also frequently mentioned by moms I know that have undergone this procedure.

Also a hidden danger of epidural anesthesia is its interaction with medications commonly used to soften the cervix and “start labor” (prostaglandins). The use of prostaglandins is common at hospitals and creates a potentially dangerous situation in which the usual medications used to treat low blood pressure during labor will no longer work.

20-30% of women experience nausea after epidural anesthesia, while 3 to 7% have vomiting during labor and afterward and lemme tell you – puking in labor is NOT COOL!

Mothers can experience excessively slow heart rates (bradycardia), heart block in which the electrical activity of the chambers of the heart become dissociated and sometimes even stoppage of the heart (cardiac arrest)!

One last thing on the epidural and I’ll stop though there is sadly much more to be said.

Local anesthetics rapidly cross the placenta…you aren’t just drugging yourself, you are drugging your baby as well. There is scientific evidence that ‘caine drugs (yes epidurals are in the same family as cocaine), the family of anesthetics used in epidurals, do, in fact, profoundly disturb instinctive newborn breastfeeding behavior. ‘Caine anesthetics, whether given as a pudendal block, epidural block, or local injection for an episiotomy, enter the mother’s circulation and cross the placenta.

Surprisingly, Docs do not discuss the relationship between the birth itself and the early days of breastfeeding. We are just beginning to understand and appreciate how a woman’s body prepares for breastfeeding during pregnancy, how what happens during labor and birth sets the stage for breastfeeding, and how the first minutes and hours after birth affect breastfeeding. The way the birth proceeds powerfully influences the first hours and days of breastfeeding.

Normal, natural birth sets the stage for problem-free breastfeeding—what nature intended—while a complicated, intervention-intensive labor and birth set the stage for problems.

In addition, the babies of medicated mothers cry substantially more, which is often attributed to frustration. They also run significantly higher temperatures, which could be due to crying and this is disadvantageous in that it means a greater expenditure of calories. Calories are VERY important to a newborn baby.

The typical “problems” that plague early breastfeeding – difficult latch, sore nipples, sleepy baby, and engorgement are rare when the mother has had a normal birth and has not been separated from her baby. Epidural = sleepy baby that is difficult, if not impossible, to nurse or even to rouse awake to nurse. Once your baby can’t nurse the whole natural process is thrown off and again is a downward spiral. Baby can’t nurse, so the breast isn’t being stimulated, so you don’t make the milk the baby needs, so the baby is supplemented with formula which means you make even less milk because again the baby isn’t feeding from you (it’s a supply and demand type thing with regards to producing milk).

Who would sign a consent if it included the above language? The degree to which the facts about the risks of inductions and epidural anesthesia are hidden from women in labor is astonishing.

Categories: Uncategorized

What About Dairy?

October 9, 2009 3 comments

I am so over the dairy campaigns about milk and weight loss, bone health and calcium. Dairy is not a necessity in our diet people! I found this site and really wanted to share some interesting facts on how not only is dairy not necessary but how it is harming Americans everyday.

“There is no human requirement for milk from a cow,” says Suzanne Havala, RD, author of the American Dietetic Association’s “Position Paper on Vegetarian Diets” and several books on nutrition. “The use of milk and its products in our country is strictly a cultural tradition,” she notes. “There are millions of people around the world who never consume cow’s milk and are none the worse for it.”

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What About Dairy?

While the question of whether dairy foods contribute to or detract from the well- being of our skeletons often occupies center stage, there are additional serious health concerns that might make you wary of dairy.

Allergies: Milk is the most common cause of food allergy. A recent study found that one way to reduce the number of allergies in infants is for the breastfeeding mother to avoid consuming, or make very limited use of cow’s milk.

Women’s health concerns: Studies indicate that osteoporosis, which afflicts 20 million American women, and ovarian cancer are most common in those countries with the highest consumption of dairy food and lowest in those countries with low dairy intake. According to gynecologist Christiane Northrup, MD, author of Women’s Bodies Women’s Wisdom, other health problems associated with the consumption of dairy foods include benign breast conditions, recurrent vaginitis, acne, menstrual cramps, fibroids, chronic intestinal upset and increased pain from endometriosis.

Anemia: Overreliance on milk in children can lead to anemia, as milk is very low in iron, and drinking large quantities of it can crowd iron-rich foods from the diet. In young infants, protein from cow’s milk can cause intestinal bleeding, another possible cause of anemia.

Colic: Sensitivity to cow’s milk can cause colic, a digestive ailment in infants. Colic can cause problems even in infants who aren’t drinking cow’s milk but whose mothers are.

Food safety concerns: Washington Post columnist Colman McCarthy chides that milk is tainted with so many that it should be sold by prescription only. Dairy farmers regularly administer drugs and growth hormones to cows to boost milk production. Investigations have routinely found residues of these veterinary pharmaceuticals in milk and other milk products, some of which may raise cancer risks. One compound approved for use in 1993 and now widely employed by commercial dairies is the controversial genetically engineered Bovine Growth Hormone (BGH). Many feel that this compound– which increases milk production in an era of serious milk surplus– poses grave potential health risks for consumers (including elevated antibiotic residue levels in milk) while favoring large-scale factory farms at the expense of small dairy producers. Unfortunately, producers who shun BGH are forbidden from labeling their products as such. Only organic dairy foods are certified to be free of antibiotic and BGH residues.

Heart disease: Dairy products are major contributors of fat, saturated fat and cholesterol to the diet. According to cardiologist Dean Ornish, MD, “Milk rates second only to beef as the largest source of saturated fat in the American diet.” Consider, for example, that one glass of 2% milk has as much saturated fat as three strips of bacon. Almost half the calories in whole milk come from fat.

Insulin-dependent diabetes:
Recent research indicates that consuming cow’s milk throughout adolescence increases the risk of developing Type I diabetes. About 1 million Americans have this disease. (13)

Lactose intolerance:
Many people cannot stomach lactose, the sugar in milk, because they lack the necessary digestive enzyme. Some people are also sensitive to milk protein. An estimated 50 million Americans experience intestinal discomfort after consuming dairy products. Symptoms include bloating, stomach pain, cramps, gas or diarrhea.

Such findings prompted breast surgeon Robert Kradjian, MD, in 1993 to review more than 500 medical articles written about milk since 1988. “How would I summarize the articles?,” Kradian asks. “First of all, none of the authors spoke of cow’s milk as an excellent food, free of side effects. The main focus of the published reports seem to be on intestinal colic, intestinal irritation, intestinal bleeding, and anemia, allergic reactions in infants and children as well as infections such as salmonella… In adults the problems seemed centered more around heart disease and arthritis, allergy, sinusitis, and the more serious questions of leukemia, lymphoma and cancer.”

More links to info on what’s really in that cow’s milk, what’s really going on with those cows and what it’s really doing to your body:
Dark Dairy Doings
Milk Sucks
Dairy Monsters

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