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The Shocking Difference: Raw vs. Pasteurized Milk

written by

Sarah Fischer

posted on

February 6, 2018

Have you ever googled ‘raw milk’ and felt overwhelmed, scared, or confused?  You’ll be lead to believe it’s the most dangerous thing you can do for your family - and this is exactly how Big Ag wants you to feel.  

The multi-billion dollar dairy industry has a lot invested in keeping milk pasteurized, but there’s growing number of people like me and you who are taking their health into their own hands and are starting to seek out fresh, raw milk.

We’ve learned to trust our gut instinct and do what feels right for our families - no matter what scrutiny we may face.  And my gut feeling tells me that something isn’t right about the way factory farms produce food.  
My gut instinct tells me animals shouldn’t require daily doses of antibiotics, hormones, or vaccines just to stay alive.  

And something in my gut tells me big Ag really doesn’t have my family in their best interest but my local farmer that I trust, does.


Pasteurization began around the time of the Great Depression.  Times were tough for everyone, including farmers.  Feed for their animals was scarce and/or unaffordable so many began feeding the leftovers from grain distilleries (red flag #1: this is not what a cow is designed to eat).  There was also a major lack of cleanliness and they didn’t understand that you can’t have poo in your milk bucket (red flag #2).  

This milk was of such poor quality that 50% of kids who were drinking it were dying so they absolutely had to do something to make it more safe.


We are aware that germs are bad.  We know that cows need fresh air and sunshine.  We know that in order for a cow to be healthy she needs to eat what she was created to eat -grass.  We know how to handle raw milk correctly to prevent contamination.  We know the importance of chilling milking immediately after bottling to prevent bacteria from growing.

I really could go on and on but I won't bore you with the details.  If I've learned anything, it's to trust your gut instinct and do what feels right for your family.  Here's what I LOVE about raw milk.

-5 Gut-Healing Benefits of Raw Milk-


Raw milk is loaded with beneficial bacteria called probiotics. When milk is pasteurized all these good guys are killed.  Having lots of healthy probiotics in your gut can help crowd out the bad bacteria that can be the cause of some common tummy troubles such as candida overgrowth, diarrhea/constipation, and irritable bowel syndrome.  

Raw milk also contains food for the probiotic bacteria to eat - prebiotic fibers. When you drink raw milk, you’re getting healthy, living probiotics and they’re able to live in your gut longer because they have a source of food!


Do you know anyone with lactose intolerance? Lactose intolerance occurs because the heat of pasteurization warps enzymes (such as lactase) into something our bodies can’t recognize.  Your body ends up attacking these foreign invaders which leaves you with a tummy ache.
Raw milk is completely digestible on its own because all of these enzymes are left intact.


I think it’s a pretty safe assumption to assume that most raw milk farmers do not use antibiotics routinely on their animals.  We certainly do not.  But sadly, big factory farms do because their system is set up in a way that disease can flourish.  Most animals are fed a low dose of antibiotics on a daily basis.  Guess where that ends up?  In your tummy.  All that hard work you do to create a healthy environment for good bacteria takes a hit because you are consuming small amounts of antibiotics when you are eating factory farmed food.


Healthy fats are very soothing and healing to our guts.  Not only are they beneficial for gut health, they are also absolutely necessary for growing brains and bodies to develop properly.  In my opinion, giving your kids skim milk is one of the most harmful things you can do.   It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that we’ve been depriving our children of healthy fats in the name of “low fat” and the obesity epidemic is raging like nothing we’ve ever seen before.


There’s tons of chemicals in raw milk that make it very anti-inflammatory. A few of my favorites include antioxidants, conjugated linoleic acids & omega-3’s.  
Many digestive issues are caused by inflammation and in order to fully heal, you have to eat lots of anti-inflammatory foods like bone broth, probiotic foods, and healthy fats.  The probiotics found in raw milk also release anti-inflammatory chemicals and help you digest your food.

After making the switch to raw milk, my sister’s eczema that was unfazed by every cream ever created disappeared. Debilitating seasonal allergies that required excessive amounts of Claritin vanished. Stubborn excess weight started to fall off. But best of youngest two kids have never had an ear infection.

Coincidence?  I think not.  Legally, of course, I can’t claim that drinking raw milk and making other diet changes has improved our health.  
But my gut instinct can’t deny it.  I will shout it from a mountain top because we all deserve to have the knowledge we need to stay healthy.

I'd love to hear your thoughts about raw milk.  If you're a raw milk lover, what made you seek it out?  If you haven't taken the plunge yet, what is holding you back?

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