Raw Milk & Pregnancy

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by stoneyheightsfarm, Aug 29, 2008.

  1. stoneyheightsfarm

    stoneyheightsfarm New Member

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    Hi All~~

    Rather personal question here... Hubby and I are thinking about trying for baby #4. I have some raw goats' milk in my fridge. Do I drink it--realizing that there are at least 2 weeks of "Am I? Am I not?" between conception and an accurate pregnancy test. What are the possible risks? I've read a tiny bit about listeriosis (and don't believe that to be a concern with this milk) but are there any others?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    personally I wouldn't risk it, I know LeeAnne and Lynn don't drink it when pg but LeeAnne can tell you for sure regarding the time frame here.
     

  3. Qvrfullmidwife

    Qvrfullmidwife New Member

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    I dont drink raw when preg and strongly advise my midwifery clients to likewise not drink raw.
    BUT
    those 2 weeks are pre implantation, by and large, and generally times when baby is pretty well insulated from outside issues. so for myself I drink raw until I get a positive test then past.
     
  4. MayLOC

    MayLOC New Member

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    Likewise, we also are hoping for #4 and thinking about trying next mo. I have been going over this issue a lot myself and have read all I can. My personal health is better now since we have been back into goats' milk the past few years again then it has probably my whole life, but especially the past 10 years. I really feel I need the goat milk (raw) and am very nervous at the thought of going off it. I had mostly decided I was going to stick with it. I know it is not a decision to make lightly though, so I would like to hear your thoughts LA of why you advise others not to.

    thanks
     
  5. KJFarm

    KJFarm Senior Member

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    If I were to have children now, I would drink raw goats milk without a second thought. I drank it with my pregnancies 30+ years ago, my daughter and daughter-in-law drank it with their pregnancies. I personally know of many who have drank it with no problems. Six years ago when I was dying with Cancer, my blood counts had bottomed out from the Chemo. I threw up around the clock from the Chemo and from the huge tumor in my stomach and in the intestines. After all the cycles of Chemo and 12 units of blood, I began to be able to eat, and the raw milk gave me added strength. My Oncologist put the "fear of God" in me about eating anything raw, coming into contact with germs, or being in public because anything could have taken my life easily. I didn't get the touch my goats for 6 months and I nearly went crazy. Yes, I would think twice about raw milk if I didn't know where it came from, but not if it is from a clean farm with healthy animals. The "old timers" didn't have anything but raw milk to drink, and they seemed to live longer lives that we do now, with much fewer health issues.
     
  6. MayLOC

    MayLOC New Member

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    Wow Janie; that is wonderful that you got through all that!

    We are very invested in healthy eating and trying to kick all these auto. immune diseases we are fighting in the butt. I just know how much the goat milk has done for my health. Just can't fathom giving it up those 9 months doing my body any good.

    And yes I agree; I wouldn't drink raw from just anybody's herd, preg. or not.
     
  7. wheytogosaanens

    wheytogosaanens New Member

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    Interestingly enough we provide "Pet Milk" for several pregnant women, referred by my mid-wife. I guess she trusts that we have clean goats, or else I wouldn't have given my "pet infant" goats' milk for 2 months while my milk came in, about 2 years ago.

    Never a problem with the raw milk. Healthy animals, well-managed, with careful handling and no problems. I think that raw goats' milk is best for all critters, great and small. IMHO.

    Camille
     
  8. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    You know after thinking about this more why not just have your milk tested for listerosis and not worry abt it. We can get so many diseases just from going to the grocery store that knowing where our milk and food comes from has to be better.
     
  9. stoneyheightsfarm

    stoneyheightsfarm New Member

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    Seems to me that the concern here would be the same as eating soft cheeses or lunch meat, both in pregnant women and in children under 5 or 6? I know the mainstream medical establishment advises against this. Is this due more to actual risks, or liability concerns? How difficult is it to test for listeriosis? Also, would any of the same concerns over raw milk, soft cheeses, and/or lunch meats apply to breastfeeding as apply to prengancy?
     
  10. MayLOC

    MayLOC New Member

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    Thanks Camille,

    I was also raised on raw goat milk. Then as young teen we switched to raw cow. Took me many years to find out I had developed an allergy to cow milk :( and many auto. immune diseases later. Same scenario for all three of our kids. All our health has improved so much on the raw goat. I imagine another baby will be in the same boat w/ the cow milk allergy and hoping things will be so much better for this baby since I know of my allergy now and can avoid it. Thinking like medicine, I just need that goat milkZ(raw). My fam. of 5 drinks almost a gal. of it a day.

    Thanks Sondra,

    Yes, we have done that. I think the concern is they can get listeriosis and infect you before you see symptoms of it. But yes, I agree we can get so many diseases everywhere!
     
  11. homeacremom

    homeacremom New Member

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    I have often wondered the same. If listeriosis can be passed through raw milk, would it not also be passed through breastmilk?
    All that aside I have come to the same conclusion as Sondra. There are so many other sources for exposure. I'd rather eat food I have produced. I have a hard time buying dairy from anyone else. Example is that I was buying cow's milk from a family I know well. Milk started going bad and tasting terrible. Asked about and it was found out that a child doing the milking was not washing the milk lines properly. Yuck!
    It isn't hard to home pasteurize if that makes you more comfortable using your own dairy products. On the other hand, pasteurization (any temp above 118* or so) is destroying your enzymes. The enzymes in the raw milk are part of what makes it so much easier to digest. For example raw milk has the lactose that so many are intolerant to, but it also has lactase, the enzyme that digests lactose. So there you go.... :/
     
  12. Leo

    Leo New Member

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    Hi,
    I wondered the same thing when I was preggo.

    So I just tested my milker for everything I could, rare diseases and all, she came back neg. of course, and by then I had her for a few years, so I was confident in her milk.

    I had a big baby and he grows like a weed, he's only been sick once now since he was born 1.5 yrs. ago.

    But like the others said, it's one thing if it's your goat, it's a whole nother story with someone else's herd.
    Megan
     
  13. LynninTX

    LynninTX New Member

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    LA will correct me if I am wrong, but a goat can get listeria at any time... testing today does not guarantee next week... and the early signs can be very very easy to miss.

    I believe I have heard the suggestion to freeze the milk and use it 30-60 days old because by then you'd see definite signs.

    Listeria is not that big a deal for a healthy adult or older child.

    But again LA correct me if I am wrong contracting listeria when pregnant = pregnancy is over... baby does not survive.... be is 6 weeks or 6 months.

    I have healthy goats and love their milk raw and give it to my dc.

    However, as Sondra said I will not touch it raw pregnant. And I hate it pasteurized... nasty... so I really do not drink it... frustrating because I think it would help my nausea...

    BUT.

    I have lost 5 babies. NOT from listeria, but lost none the less... 2 of them precious tiny boys I was blessed to birth and hold. I canNOT prevent a loss... BUT I can do all that is within my power... wear a seatbelt, take prometrium, avoid raw dairy, avoid lunch meat unless heated to steaming....

    Each person though needs to research and make their own decision.
     
  14. Ashley

    Ashley Active Member

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    As far as lysteriosis is concerned, can you not freeze the milk and use it after time has past proving the goat to not be ill?
     
  15. Qvrfullmidwife

    Qvrfullmidwife New Member

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    You can prove a goat does not have listeriosis. And in a week they can have it. Listeriosis is a disease that not only gives you the usual mild fever, aches, etc, it also targets nervous system tissue, especailly the developing brain. If a pregnant women gets it she either miscarriaes or delivers early, depending upon how pregnant she is, but she does deliver the baby. Even if born close to term, due to the fact that it targets developing brains the few babies that survive usually end up significantly handicapped.

    Unfortunately by the time you are picking up on issues in your doe you may have already drunk listeriosis tainted milk.

    Studies have been done and have failed to show that a mom who gets listeriosis will pass it on in her breastmilk. Not sure what the protective mechanism is but there has not been a documented case of this happening.

    Theoretically Iguess you *could* freeze the milk until you are sure the doe is healthy from that milking but due to the fact that they can develop the disease later you woudl need to keep immaculate records.

    For me (and what I advise my midwifery clients) the benefit of drinking raw will be of little comfort if you lose you rbaby. It isnt that long to go without, it seems prudent to pasteurize while pregnant. 40 weeks of pasteurizing VS a lifetime of blindness and/or mental retardation if not death itself isnt (to me) that hard of a choice to make. If I *did* drink raw when preg it would ONLY be from my own herd that I had my hands on them and their feed each and every feeding and milking.

    I dont want to be rude or disrespectful to another midwife Camille, but frankly I am really surprised that a midwife recommends her clients to drink raw while pregnant. In 20 plus yrs of practising midwifery I have never known ANYONE to recommend raw milk for pregnant women.
     
  16. wheytogosaanens

    wheytogosaanens New Member

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    LeeAnne,

    No offense taken. I had no idea that listeriosis represented such a risk. I do know that my mother drank raw cows' milk all of her pregnancies (that would be 11) and never had a problem.

    However, having lost my share of children (both miscarriages and infants - and no I wasn't drinking goats' milk at the time) I would never criticize someone else for being very cautious. I guess I was trying to provide some balance in the straight-forward personal life-experience way. Fact is that many people (and almost all in the "old days") have consumed raw milk with no problems at all. Everyone needs to make their own choices and do the best they can.

    I appreciate the insight that LeeAnne and Lynne can provide on this topic. Midwives study and read, and investigate and weigh and evaluate. I respect them immensely. Funny how no doctor (first 4 with conventional doctor) ever told me to avoid lunch meat. I just didn't like the stuff!

    Camille
     
  17. stoneyheightsfarm

    stoneyheightsfarm New Member

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    This is all very helpful, thank you! My midwife is a vegan, so she'd like for me to not have any animal products. :) I was thinking that a pasterurizer would be beneficial for CAE prevention, making cheese, yogurt, etc. So, this just puts it a little higher on my list. Many thanks!