Unpasteurized Milk Poses Health Risks without Benefits

Journal of Environmental Health, March 2009 | Go to article overview

Unpasteurized Milk Poses Health Risks without Benefits


With disease outbreaks linked to unpasteurized milk rising in the U.S., a review published in the January 1, 2009, issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases examines the dangers of drinking raw milk.

Milk and dairy products are cornerstones of a healthy diet. If those products are consumed unpasteurized, however, they can present a serious health hazard because of possible contamination with pathogenic bacteria. An average of 5.2 outbreaks per year linked to raw milk have occurred in the U.S. between 1993 and 2006--more than double the rate in the previous 19 years, according to co-authors Jeffrey T. LeJeune and Paivi J. Rajala-Schultz of the College of Veterinary Medicine in Columbus, Ohio.

Contamination can occur at the time of collection, processing, distribution, or storage of milk, according to the authors. Many pathogens can be found in the dairy farm environment, which can contaminate the teat skin of dairy cows and consequently the milk at the time when cows are milked. …

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Unpasteurized Milk Poses Health Risks without Benefits
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