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Milk - The promoter of chronic Western diseases

Department of Dermatology, Environmental Medicine and Health Theory, University of Osnabrück, Sedanstrasse 115, D-49090 Osnabrück, Germany.
Medical Hypotheses (Impact Factor: 1.07). 03/2009; 72(6):631-9. DOI: 10.1016/j.mehy.2009.01.008
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Common chronic diseases of Western societies, such as coronary heart disease, diabetes mellitus, cancer, hypertension, obesity, dementia, and allergic diseases are significantly influenced by dietary habits. Cow's milk and dairy products are nutritional staples in most Western societies. Milk and dairy product consumption is recommended by most nutritional societies because of their beneficial effects for calcium uptake and bone mineralization and as a source of valuable protein. However, the adverse long-term effects of milk and milk protein consumption on human health have been neglected. A hypothesis is presented, showing for the first time that milk protein consumption is an essential adverse environmental factor promoting most chronic diseases of Western societies. Milk protein consumption induces postprandial hyperinsulinaemia and shifts the growth hormone/insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) axis to permanently increased IGF-1 serum levels. Insulin/IGF-1 signalling is involved in the regulation of fetal growth, T-cell maturation in the thymus, linear growth, pathogenesis of acne, atherosclerosis, diabetes mellitus, obesity, cancer and neurodegenerative diseases, thus affecting most chronic diseases of Western societies. Of special concern is the possibility that milk intake during pregnancy adversely affects the early fetal programming of the IGF-1 axis which will influence health risks later in life. An accumulated body of evidence for the adverse effects of cow's milk consumption from fetal life to childhood, adolescence, adulthood and senescence will be provided which strengthens the presented hypothesis.

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    • "Even milk consumption, the hormone content of which is well known, has been associated with an increased risk of early menarche (Wiley, 2011). There are studies that find a relationship between milk and dairy products with human illnesses, such as teenagers' acne, prostate, breast, ovarian and corpus uteri cancers, many chronic diseases that are common in Western societies, as well as male reproductive disorders (Adebamowo et al., 2008; Ganmaa et al., 2011; Ganmaa et al., 2001; Givens et al., 2008; Melnik, 2009; Wiley, 2011). There are many possible contributory factors to these health problems, including steroid hormones which are well known as endocrine disruption agents. "
    Food Production - Approaches, Challenges and Tasks, 01/2012; , ISBN: 978-953-307-887-8
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    • "breast, ovarian and corpus uteri cancers; many chronic diseases that are common in Western societies; as well as male reproductive disorders (Ganmaa et al. 2001; Ganmaa and Sato 2005; Jouan et al. 2006; Adebamowo et al. 2008; Givens et al. 2008; Farlow et al. 2009; Melnik 2009; Davaasambuu et al. 2011; Wiley 2011). Milk consumption has even been associated with an increased risk of early menarche (Wiley 2011) and endometrial cancer in postmenopausal women (Davaasambuu et al. 2011). "
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    ABSTRACT: Hormones work in harmony in the body, and this status must be maintained to avoid metabolic disequilibrium and the subsequent illness. Besides, it has been reported that exogenous steroids (presence in the environment and food products) influence the development of several important illnesses in humans. Endogenous steroid hormones in food of animal origin are unavoidable as they occur naturally in these products. The presence of hormones in food has been connected with several human health problems. Bovine milk contains considerable quantities of hormones and it is of particular concern. A liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) method, based on hydroxylamine derivatisation, has been developed and validated for the quantification of six sex hormones in milk [pregnenolone (P₅), progesterone (P₄), estrone (E₁), testosterone (T), androstenedione (A) and dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA)]. This method has been applied to real raw milk samples and the existence of differences between milk from pregnant and non-pregnant cows has been statistically confirmed. Basing on a revision of existing published data, it could be concluded that maximum daily intakes for hormones are not reached through milk ingestion. Although dairy products are an important source of hormones, other products of animal origin must be considered as well for intake calculations.
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    • "These studies and more data on studies between dairy-consuming and dairy-free subpopulations of the same genetic background may substantiate the proposed role of milk consumption as a promoter of T2D, Alzheimer disease and other chronic diseases of Western civilization [93]. "
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    ABSTRACT: The presented hypothesis identifies milk consumption as an environmental risk factor of Western diet promoting type 2 diabetes (T2D). Milk, commonly regarded as a valuable nutrient, exerts important endocrine functions as an insulinotropic, anabolic and mitogenic signalling system supporting neonatal growth and development. The presented hypothesis substantiates milk's physiological role as a signalling system for pancreatic β-cell proliferation by milk's ability to increase prolactin-, growth hormone and incretin-signalling. The proposed mechanism of milk-induced postnatal β-cell mass expansion mimics the adaptive prolactin-dependent proliferative changes observed in pregnancy. Milk signalling down-regulates the key transcription factor FoxO1 leading to up-regulation of insulin promoter factor-1 which stimulates β-cell proliferation, insulin secretion as well as coexpression of islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP). The recent finding that adult rodent β-cells only proliferate by self-duplication is of crucial importance, because permanent milk consumption beyond the weaning period may continuously over-stimulate β-cell replication thereby accelerating the onset of replicative β-cell senescence. The long-term use of milk may thus increase endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and toxic IAPP oligomer formation by overloading the ER with cytotoxic IAPPs thereby promoting β-cell apoptosis. Both increased β-cell proliferation and β-cell apoptosis are hallmarks of T2D. This hypothesis gets support from clinical states of hyperprolactinaemia and progeria syndromes with early onset of cell senescence which are both associated with an increased incidence of T2D and share common features of milk signalling. Furthermore, the presented milk hypothesis of T2D is compatible with the concept of high ER stress in T2D and the toxic oligomer hypothesis of T2D and may explain the high association of T2D and Alzheimer disease.
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