Cow’s Milk – Healthy or Unhealthy?

6000 years ago, people already used cow’s milk in their nutrition – it was and has always been a staple food. Even today, cow’s milk enjoys great popularity and be it merely at breakfast in muesli, cereal or coffee.

Although milk is a natural food, doubts are growing as to whether cow’s milk is really as good as it is said to be and whether it can really be recommended without reservation. Some scientists point out that increased milk consumption can have an unfavorable effect on health. There are studies suggesting that milk can sometimes lead to obesity, increased tendency to develop acne, allergies, diabetes and also various cancers.  

The valuable nutrients in milk

Cow’s milk is a complete food that contains all the important and necessary nutrients required for the development and intensive growth phase of babies and toddlers. It provides the body with energy in the form of lactose (milk sugar), with fat and protein – the most important building material for almost all body cells – as well as with numerous minerals and vitamins. It is above all its high calcium content that is positively emphasized to guarantee “strong bones”. And that’s why it is recommended for adults to consume milk and dairy products as often as possible to prevent osteoporosis.

Milk calcium for strong bones?

A publication by the scientists Walter Willett (epidemiologist) and David Ludwig (endocrinologist) from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health presented in Boston in 2020 contradicts the well-known theory that milk and its high level of calcium strengthen bones. According to their data, collected in Denmark and Sweden, the risk of bone fractures – with higher consumption of milk and dairy products – increased compared to countries such as China and Indonesia, where hardly any milk and dairy products are consumed.

Another study also showed the correlation between an increased risk of fracture in old age and frequent consumption of milk in childhood. The scientists explain these results as follows: calcium from food can only be stored in the bones in sufficient quantities if there are enough vitamin D and magnesium available; a fact which was not known for a long time.

Milk calcium and cancer

Despite these negative conclusions, the high level of calcium in milk presents benefits for one’s health. Scientists suppose that milk and dairy products can reduce the risk of colon cancer. This fact is based on the assumption that the calcium in milk is able to bind in the intestine and then eliminate harmful breakdown products of bile acids, which are suspected of promoting proliferation in the intestinal mucosa.

However, after evaluating international data, the World Cancer Research Fund also proved that milk may increase the risk of prostate cancer. This, however, was only observed in men who consumed extreme amounts of milk (1 liter) and dairy products (100 g of hard cheese) per day over a long period of time. The mechanism responsible for this correlation still has to be found.

The “bad” fats of milk

Fat is currently the most interesting object of study for science, of all the components of milk. About 70% of milk fat consists of saturated fatty acids, which have long been regarded critically because they are considered to be classic risk factors for arteriosclerosis and heart attack. However, according to new findings, milk fat is by no means as harmful as it was long thought to be. It is now believed that the cause of this is known, because the tiny droplets of fat are encased in a membrane that also consists of proteins and phosphorus. Obviously, milk fat seems to be particularly healthy when this structure is maintained. In an experiment, nutrition experts and scientists found that butter increases the concentration of LDL in the blood, whereas cream did not have this effect.

It is assumed that during the production of butter the membrane of the fat droplets is destroyed. This is because the milk must be centrifuged in order to extract the butterfat from the milk. This creates extremely strong centrifugal forces that destroy the structures.

Not all milk is the same

Nowadays, different types of cow’s milk are offered in the refrigerated shelves of supermarkets. Milk is almost always pasteurized (15-30 sec at 72°C). In addition to conventional heat treatment, researchers have developed other preservation methods that kill germs. The more rigorous the procedure, the more the milk changes.

Supermarkets currently sell mainly three heat-treated varieties, both conventional and organic:

  • “traditionally produced” fresh milk (pasteurised, can be kept refrigerated for 10 days)
  • “longer shelf life” (heated to 127°C for a few seconds, can be stored unopened for 3 weeks)
  • “UHT milk” (heated to 135°C, can be stored unopened for up to 6 months)

Some of the vitamins are affected by the heat treatment. However, homogenisation has a much greater influence on the quality of milk. The milk is pressed under high pressure by means of closed-meshed filters. This finely spreads larger fat accumulations and prevents the milk from creaming. However, protein structures are also torn apart by this process. Some of these fragments cannot be broken down by the digestive enzymes and can therefore be a burden on the intestine.

Milk used for cheese production, yogurt and fermented dairy products is not homogenized.

Milk – a food, not a beverage

“The dose makes the poison” – using milk as a beverage is not recommended. For refreshment, the body primarily needs water and not additional calories. In many studies, three glasses of milk a day are already classified as “highly increased consumption” with possibly unhealthy consequences. This amount is quickly reached if you consume café latte, cocoa, milk shakes or muesli with milk several times a day.

Therefore, the German Nutrition Society (DGE) recommends consuming only 200 to 250 grams of milk and dairy products per day – provided there is no lactose intolerance or milk protein allergy.

What is Metabolic Balance’s position on milk?

For Metabolic Balance, too, cow’s milk in well-dosed quantities is a nutritionally high-quality food whose health aspects should not be underestimated. Our rule of “a different protein for every meal” also avoids excessive consumption, which could have an adverse effect. Cow’s milk should always have a fat content of at least 3. 5% – or even more (cow’s milk directly from the farm). It is also advisable to choose organic cow’s milk that has been processed as gently as possible.

Despite the various positive aspects, Metabolic Balance also takes into account the fact that many people in the world cannot tolerate cow’s milk. One of the reasons for this is that, due to genetic disposition, the enzyme lactase, which breaks down lactose, is not produced or is produced insufficiently in the intestine. The milk sugar enters the large intestine undigested and, on the one hand, dehydrates the intestinal mucosa, which leads to diarrhea, and on the other hand, is also decomposed by bacteria – among other things, carbon dioxide, hydrogen and methane are produced, which result in severe flatulence.

As an adequate substitute for cow’s milk, especially in order to absorb sufficient calcium, in addition to soybeans, tofu and fermented foods, numerous plant-based foods such as broccoli, green cabbage, Chinese cabbage, pak choi or legumes (pulses) and sweet potatoes are recommended.

Sources:

  1. Milk and Health; Walter C. Willett, M.D., Dr.P.H., and David S. Ludwig, M.D., Ph.D; N Engl J Med 2020; 382:644-654 DOI: 10.1056/NEJMra1903547
  2. Milk Consumption During Teenage Years and Risk of Hip Fractures in Older Adults
  3. Diane Feskanich, ScD1; Heike A. Bischoff-Ferrari, MD, DrPH2,3; A. Lindsay Frazier, MD1,4; et al; JAMA Pediatr. 2014;168(1):54-60.  doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2013.3821
  4. Calcium Intake and the Incidence of Forearm and Hip Fractures among Men William Owusu, Walter C. Willett, Diane Feskanich, Alberto Ascherio, Donna Spiegelman, Graham A. Colditz

Inspired Pizza Creations – Time to rethink Pizza

If you decide to be inspired by the following combinations, please remember to only have one protein.  Also, we suggest making a Chickpea flour pizza crust  and then adding the toppings (Chickpea flour crust will be your protein.)

NOTE:  These recipes in the infographic are not metabolic balance recipes. This is inspiration for you to play with during your holiday.  If you are unsure about a combination, please ask your coach.

Also, please remember you can only use one protein on your pizzas so if you use the chickpea flour crust, that is the only protein you can use.

If you want to have a pizza feeling, you can take your rye bread and iron it flat or roll it flat using a rolling pin and then grilling it before adding the toppings and putting it in the oven.

If you use your rye bread this way, you can add the cheese on your plan to the pizza!

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photo of chickpeas by Mattie Hagedorn

Where’s The Egg? Egg Substitutes for Baking and Cooking – Advent #9

metabolic balance wants you to have only one protein per meal so when a recipe requires you to use an egg and another protein, what are you to do?   Be creative! Here is an infographic offering you some egg alternatives:

 

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photos of eggs by Liz West

Random Acts of Kindness – Advents Calendar

Today is the first of December and it is time to spend 24 days celebrating metabolic balancing, mindful living and reminiscing over our balanced year.

Today, I thought we would start with a calendar of random acts of kindness you can share this month.

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NOTE: Thank you  Angelika  Zeller-Michaelson for the image of the calendar.

Rebalancing to be Your Ideal Weight

Don’t wait until the new year. If you have been on the metabolic balance plan for a year and have more weight to lose or have stopped following the plan and want to start your journey again, now is the time to start rebalancing.  

Rebalancing

What does it mean to rebalance?  Rebalancing means going back to phase 1 & 2 of the plan so that you can reset your body and get back on track.  (If you have been off the program for awhile, we suggest you get a new plan from your metabolic balance coach.)

Many clients have a hard time realizing they have gained weight or, that they have strayed too far from their metabolic balance plan.  If you are a metabolic balancer and,

-Your clothes or rings getting tighter;

-You have less energy;

-There a reduction in your well-being;

-You reached your alarm weight*;

A rebalancing should be done with the assistance of your coach.  Because the focus of the metabolic balance plan is to help you have a healthy lifestyle, a rebalancing should be done no more than once a year.   If you find that you need to do a rebalancing several times in a short period of time, you may have diet issues that need to be addressed by your coach. 

If you would like to read more about the metabolic balance plan, please check out our posts for phase ½, phase 3, and phase 4.

*Alarm weight.  Sylvia Egel uses an alarm weight with her clients as a warning that something is wrong.  If a client reaches their alarm weight, they need to do a rebalancing to get things back on track.

Before rebalancing:

  • Let your coach know that you are rebalancing and discuss with your coach the challenges you faced or are facing with eating the metabolic balance way.
  • If it has been several years since you received your initial plan, ask your coach for an updated plan based on a new blood test to gauge your current health and nutritional status. (There is a charge for a new plan based on a new blood test.)
  • Prepare your kitchen/home for phase 1 and 2.  Eliminate any foods from your house which will derail you during those first few weeks.
  • Lighten your schedule and try to keep the stress down while you are making this healthy change to your body and your lifestyle.

Additional Posts on Rebalancing:

4 tips for rebalancing

Rebalancing tips from metabolic balance Germany

 

Homemade Chai Recipe – metabolic balance Monday Recipe (Treat Drink)

Chai is an exotic drink that will fill your nostrils with an amazing blend of seasonings.

If you would like to include chai with your meal without making it a treat drink, remove the milk and the sugar.

homemade-chai

Ingredients:

Seasoning Ingredients

  • 2-inch piece fresh ginger, cut into thin rounds
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 teaspoons black peppercorns
  • 10 whole cloves
  • 6 cardamom pods

Basic Ingredients

  • 6 cups cold water
  • 6 bags of black tea (preferably Darjeeling)

Treat Ingredients

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar

Instructions:

  • Place the first five ingredients in a saucepan.
  • Gently crush the spices in the pan.
  • Add 6 cups of water and bring it to a boil over high heat.
  • Reduce the heat to medium-low and partially cover the pan.
  • Gently simmer the spices in the water for ten minutes.
  • Remove from pan from the heat.
  • Add tea bags and let it stand for 5 minutes.
  • Remove the tea bags.
  • Add milk and sugar.
  • Bring tea to simmer.
  • whisk until sugar dissolves.
  • Strain the ingredients into a teapot and serve.

Red Cabbage Juice or Smoothie -metabolic balance Monday Recipe

Happy Monday!  Do you find it difficult to eat vegetables for breakfast?  I find it very difficult so for the next few weeks, I’m blending my breakfast into a smoothie to add more nutrients to my life.

Today’s recipe is a combination of freshly made vegetable and fruit juice and blended fruit.

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You will NOT use a whole red cabbage for this breakfast recipe.

The recipe below is not metabolic balance appropriate because of the two fruits but I will try the cabbage with carrots and see if that can replace the blueberries. At this point, the apple isn’t strong enough to mask the strong cabbage taste (for me). I found that I needed to add the blueberries to make the drink a breakfast of champions.

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Red Cabbage Abstract -Look how beautiful it is!

After I added two fruits, the red cabbage morning smoothie was delicious.  You are only allowed one fruit on the metabolic balance plan so either pick one fruit or reduce the amount of cabbage.  You can reduce the amount of cabbage by adding a little bit at a time to the blender and then stopping before the drink becomes distasteful.  Keep a spoon handy for tasting and maybe a bit of extra apple juice in case you go overboard with the cabbage.

Ingredients Red cabbage juice:

  • Red cabbage. (juiced)
  • Portion of cucumber (Juiced)
  • Portion of zucchini (Juiced)
  • Apple (Juiced)
  • Frozen Blueberries (blended)
  • Cinnamon (optional)

Ingredients Red Cabbage Smoothie:

  • 4 leaves red cabbage finely chopped
  • leftover portion of vegetables which can include lettuce/avocado
  • 1 red apple
  • 1/2 cups blueberries (I will experiment to see what vegetable we can add to make this smoothie sweeter and replace the blueberries.)
  • 1/2 cup water

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Instructions for Juicing:

You will need a juicer.  Place all vegetables into the juicer and juice them.  My juicer gives me a great foam on top.

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Place the juice in a blender and add frozen blueberries.  If you do not have blueberries on your plan, add another frozen dark berry or try juicing a sweet vegetable like carrots to stay on plan and add ice to thicken the drink.

If you decide to use carrots please juice them or your juice drink will be crunchy.

Once blended, serve the drink immediately to get all the nutritional value of your breakfast.

Instructions for Smoothie:

Place all finely chopped ingredients into your blender with the water or ice cubes and water.

Blend until smooth and then drink it immediately with a serving of rye bread and a protein.

FYI:  I’m currently reading Dr. Funfack’s book “metabolic balance – Your Personalised Nutrition Roadmap. If you don’t have a copy, you can purchase it in our metabolic balance US Amazon Store.

Kale For Breakfast

I will be sharing a breakfast recipe on Monday but found this on LivecleanMB and felt like we needed to share. Enjoy a double recipe week!

Live Clean MB

Sonya McLeodSonya McLeod

For some metabolic balancers breakfast can be a difficult meal, a rushed schedule, not accustomed to taking the time to prepare or eat breakfast, etc. I asked Sonya McLeod, metabolic balance® coach in Vancouver, BC for some ideas:

I like this recipe because it is tasty, healthy and easy to make. I always struggle with finding a way to eat my greens, especially in the morning, and this recipe does the trick for me.

FACTS ABOUT KALE

According to The George Mateljan Foundation:

  • Kale is now recognized as providing comprehensive support for the body’s detoxification system.
  • Researchers can now identify over 45 different flavonoids in kale that benefit health.
  • Kale is one of the cruciferous vegetables that can help prevent cancer.
  • Kale’s risk-lowering benefits for cancer have recently been extended to at least five different types of cancer.

RECIPE: STIR FRIED KALE SALAD

INGREDIENTS
1 vegetable…

View original post 407 more words

Grilled Avocado Recipe with Salsa Filling – metabolic balance Monday Recipe

Avocado Ingredients:

  • Avocado
  • olive oil
  • salt for seasoning

Salsa Ingredients:

  • diced tomatoes(seeds removed)
  • diced red onion
  • cilantro
  • salt
  • pepper
  • shredded carrots

Instructions for  grilled avocado slices:

  • Cut avocado in half and remove the seed and peel.
  • Slice each half into slices.
  • Brush with olive oil.
  • Place for two minutes on each side
  • Season to taste.
  • Serve on Rye bread or rye crisps with salsa on top.

Instructions for grilled Avocado halves:

  • Cut avocado in half and remove seed. Keep the peel on.
  • Lightly brush olive oil on each open side of the avocado.
  • place the avocado on the grill with the meat side down.
  • Grill for about 2 minutes.
  • Season to taste.
  • Fill the avocado with Salsa and serve using the avocado as a small bowl.

Instructions for Salsa:

Place all the ingredients in a bowl and mix with a hand blender.  Pulse a few times to add a juice to the salsa but avoid over mixing and making a sauce.  Salsa is chunky so avoid over blending.

After you have mixed the ingredients, add seasoning to taste and then let it sit for a few hours so the flavours can combine.

NOTE:  You can decide to add an egg or other protein to your avocado meal.  We talked before about eggs in an avocado which makes  a filling meal.  This recipe would also work really well with Chickpea chips.

 

photo of avocado by Makia Minich