Benefits of raw milk
Raw milk contains bioavailable vitamins and minerals, as well as enzymes and proteins that assist in their absorption (Geertsen). The same is not true of pasteurized milk: the amount of bioavailable vitamins are greatly reduced, enzymes are completely destroyed, and proteins are denatured (Axe).
Raw milk and pasteurized milk should be viewed as entirely different substances. I do not believe there are any health benefits to drinking pasteurized milk and would not recommend it for treating PMS.
How can raw milk help with hormonal imbalance?
There is strong evidence to suggest that hormonal imbalance is linked to nutritional deficiencies, imbalanced gut flora, and candida overgrowth (Zhang, bodyecology). Minerals like calcium, magnesium, and zinc play key roles in hormonal balance (Geertsen)—all of which are present in raw milk. Additionally, raw milk has gut-friendly bacteria and enzymes that can help restore gut health.
My experience (trial)
I drank anywhere from one to three cups of raw cow’s milk daily for over two months. I was also on a restricted diet and taking Maca daily. During the two months that I was drinking raw milk daily, I saw a significant decrease in moodswings, trembling, menstrual pain, anxiety, and depression related to PMS and Endometriosis. My relationships with others improved and I became more optimistic about my life in general.
At the time, I did not realize the connection between PMS relief and raw milk, and decided to stop drinking it because it was expensive. I returned to pasteurized milk and the next month I noticed my PMS return with a fury! I got into arguments with loved ones, cried excessively, felt suicidal, and had a terrible time with my period. I was still talking Maca at the time, so the only difference in my diet was switching from raw milk to pasteurized milk.
I have since returned to drinking raw milk and have noticed a significant decrease in my PMS and endometriosis symptoms. While I am not by any means ‘cured’ of PMS and endometriosis, I notice that the crying spells, pain, and overall menstrual discomfort has been reduced. As a long-term sufferer of endometriosis, I find any relief from the symptoms of endometriosis is a step in the right direction.
Would I recommend it?
Does raw milk help with PMS or endometriosis? Based on my experience, yes. I will continue to drink it as long as I can find a reliable source. Keep in mind that there are some risks associated with raw milk; I suggest that you inform yourself of the risks before adding it to your diet. In particular, those that have a dairy intolerance will find that raw milk could make their PMS worse. It’s important to listen to your body and find out what works for you. Thankfully, I do not have a dairy intolerance so I handle raw milk well.
I continue to take Maca because I see it as a supporter herb. I believe it can help keep hormones in balance while you are trying to correct your own health issues. I believe Maca and raw milk work well together and would recommend supplementing both.
If you choose not to drink raw milk, I would strongly recommend that you stop consuming pasteurized dairy products altogether.
Please review some of the references that I have included with this article. There are mountains of research supporting the health benefits of raw milk, and you can find links to many of them from the references below.
Eby, G. and Eby, K. Rapid recovery from major depression using magnesium treatment. 2006. Elsevier, Volume 67, Issue 2, Pages 362–370.
Geertsen, Lauren. Quit PMS. Naturally End Your Menstrual Misery!
Health Benefits of Raw Milk. <http://www.raw-milk-facts.com/raw_milk_health_benefits.html>
PMS and Candida Overgrowth: The Dangers of Estrogen Dominance. <http://bodyecology.com/articles/pms-and-candida-overgrowth-the-dangers-of-estrogen-dominance>
X Zhang, et al. Estrogen effects on Candida albicans: a potential virulence-regulating mechanism. J Infect Dis. 2000 Apr; 181 (4):1441 – 1446. Epub 2000 Apr 13.
Axe, J. Raw Milk Heals Skin, Allergies, and Immunity. <http://draxe.com/raw-milk-benefits/>