Unwelcome Government Involvement in Our Health

I’m part of the “Real Food” world, the population that believes in eating food as God made it, that with all our medical and scientific technology currently available, we’re not exactly healthier today. And as part of the “Real Food” world, I’ve read a lot about the whole Raw Milk movement in the US, where people who drink and distribute this superfood are criminalized. But it always seemed far off to me. That was in the US. Yes, it was disturbing reading about raids by gun toting federal agents on people distributing raw milk, and about people getting arrested and taken to court for providing people with this wonderful food. But that was across the ocean, far from me, and far from my life. And not much I can do about it.

But when the raw milk war comes to Israel, then I get infuriated. The government has no business sticking its nose into people’s health and diets, especially since the Israeli government doesn’t exactly have a wonderful track record in “keeping us healthy”. People have a right to make their own medical decisions, and the government should not get involved.

The news brief I read that prompted this post stated

In summer there is an increase in the incidence of Entero viruses causing the formation of ulcers in the mouth, and the Ministry of Health warns the public about using unpasteurized milk for treatment of these ulcers, or of other cuts and lesions.

The Health Ministry noted that popular practice for applying unpasteurized goat milk to heal wounds or ulcers in the mouth, may jeopardize the patient and expose them to infectious pathogens even if they only gargle the milk without swallowing or only spread it on wounds.  “Unpasteurized milk of all kinds (cow’s milk, sheep milk, goat milk camel milk, etc.) may contain pathogens including brucella, salmonella, E-coli and Listeria. Pathogens are likely to manifest in fever, abdominal pain, vomiting and diarrhea and complications that pose a serious medical risk and death,” announced the Ministry.

Newsflash- nothing in this world is safe. Not prescribed medication. Not over the counter medication. And nothing is 100% effective.

But there are many, many, many people who’ve been healed from various illnesses, including hand foot and mouth disease, by applying raw goat or cow milk directly to the lesion.

Sounds crazy, but it really isn’t.

Breast milk was the first identified probiotic, the first time people realized that there were substances in the milk that were beneficial bacteria to the body. Breast milk also contains antibacterial and antiviral properties, as well as containing many antibodies against various diseases.

Human breastmilk is successfully used to treat so many things, from conjunctivitis to diaper rashes, among many other things.

Raw cow milk and raw goat milk is also breast milk- just cow and goat breast milk, not human breast milk, and has many of those same benefits.

The second it is pasteurized, these probiotics, antibodies, and antimicrobial properties get destroyed, and it can no longer be used to cure.

The Israeli government is warning people away from using this effective, cheap, well known cure because “raw animal milk is dangerous”.

How dangerous?

Well, according to statistics, your chance of getting negatively affected by raw cow or goat’s milk is less than 1 in 8 million, and that includes consuming raw cow or goat’s milk from animals that weren’t kept in healthy conditions- healthier animals produce healthier milk. And typically people who provide raw milk keep their herds in healthy conditions, very different than the industrial factory farming found in the dairy industry, which makes the statistical probability of illness even less…

I would guess that the likelihood of developing bad side effects to medicines used to treat hand foot and mouth disease and other similar diseases is higher than 1 in 8 million, but you don’t hear the government warning you about the potential bad side effects.

It makes me wonder who is prompting the government to issue these warnings. Why do warning never get publicized about the health issues involved in the medical treatments the government is pushing on us, but we get warnings and worse regarding treatments that don’t provide any money for drug companies? If education is vital, educate on both sides of the issue, not just one sidedly.

I’ll take my health decisions and my family’s health decisions into my/our own hands. Please, governments, stay out of our health. You don’t have a good track record, and, quite frankly, its none of your business.

About the Author
Adara Peskin is a non conformist chareidi feminist single mother of 4 living in Kochav Yaakov, activist for mental health awareness, blogger at about living a life with mindful spending, and foraging instructor, attempting to make a kiddush Hashem every day via her interactions with others.