Dairy health benefits questioned

Related tags Dairy Dairy products Milk

Nurses in the UK are calling for an educational campaign outlining
the health risks of dairy foods. Researchers from Imperial College
London believe that in an attempt to increase yield, farmers are
artificially increasing a growth hormone in cows which has been
linked to breast and prostate cancer, writes Danny Vincent.

A leading researcher in diets and hormone-dependent cancers claims that dairy consumption is having a greater effect on cancer than previously thought. Jane Plant, the nurse involved with the research believes that nurses need to be better educated when it comes to advising patience of the dangers associated with dairy products.

This is not the first time that scientists have made a connection between dairy products and cancer. The researcher has this time pointed to the situation in Asia to make her point.

In Asia, according to recent research, only one in 100,000 women get breast cancer. The researcher concluded that in regions such as Mongolia, the area where dairy foods are more commonly consumed - cancer rates are higher.

The debate over the health benefits in dairy products is not new. The UK Dairy Council, which represents the dairy industry, has in the past reminded some in the industry that dairy may fight against colon and breast cancer.

Nonetheless, there has been an increase research claiming that some cancers are fed by hormones in the products. Some research has indicated that women that have high levels of a hormone called IGF-1 have a higher risk of falling victim to breast cancer. Some modern farming techniques have lead farmers to artificially raise the level of IGF-1 in an attempt to increase the milk yield. It has been argued that this may be putting consumers at higher risk.

The researcher presented evidence suggesting that dairy products may increase the risk of fractures by overloading the bones with calcium. She argues that human milk has the correct amount of calcium for consumption and claims that animal milk is unneeded in diets.

In the UK a large proportion of those who fall victim to cancer want to know more about nutrition. Nurses believe that there needs to be a more conscious effort to point out the risks involved with dairy foods.

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