Could Lactose Explain the Milk – Parkinson’s Disease Link?

Could Lactose Explain the Milk – Parkinson’s Disease Link?

September 15, 2019 0 By Ewald Bahringer


“Could Lactose Explain the Milk –
Parkinson’s Disease Link?” Parkinson’s disease is
the second most common neurodegenerative disease
after Alzheimer’s. In the US, there are
approximately 60,000 new cases diagnosed
every year, bringing the total number of current
cases up to about a million, with tens of thousands dying
from it every year. The dietary component most
often implicated is milk, for which contamination
of milk by neurotoxins has been considered the
only possible explanation. High levels of organochlorine
pesticide residues had been found in milk, and in the most affected
areas in the brains of Parkinson’s victim’s
on autopsy. Since pesticides in milk
have been found all over, maybe the dairy industry should
require toxin screenings of milk. And there are indeed now inexpensive,
sensitive, portable tests available. No false positives;
no false negatives, providing rapid detection of
highly toxic pesticides in milk. Now we just have to
convince the dairy industry to actually do it. Others though are not as convinced
of the pesticide link. Despite clear-cut associations between milk intake and the
incidence of Parkinson’s disease, there is no rational explanation for milk being a risk
factor for PD. If it were the pesticides
present in milk that could accumulate
in the brain, we would assume that the pesticides
would build up in the fat, and the link between skimmed
milk and Parkinson’s is just as strong. So they suggest
reverse causation— the milk didn’t
cause Parkinson’s, the Parkinson’s
caused the milk. Parkinson’s makes some people
depressed, they reasoned, and depressed people may
drink more milk. So we shouldn’t limit dairy
intake in Parkinson’s especially since they are so
susceptible to hip fractures, but now we know that
milk doesn’t appear to protect against hip
fractures afterall, and may actually
increase the risk of both bone fractures
and death— but, ironically may
offer a clue as to what’s going
on in Parkinson’s. But first this reverse
causation argument. Did milk lead to Parkinson’s or
Parkinson’s lead to milk? What one needs are
prospective cohort studies where you measure
milk consumption first and then follow
people forward over time, and such studies still
found a significant increased risk associated
with dairy intake. The risk increased by 17% for every small glass
of milk a day and 13% for every daily
half slice of cheese. Again, the standard explanation
is that it’s from the pesticides and other
neurotoxins in dairy, but that doesn’t explain
why there’s more risk attached to some dairy
products than others. Pesticide residues are found
in all dairy products so why should milk be
associated with Parkinson’s more than cheese? Well, there are other
neurotoxic contaminants in milk besides the
pesticides themselves, like tetrahydroisoquinolines, found in the brains of
Parkinson’s disease victims, but in higher levels
in cheese than in milk, though people may drink more
milk than they eat cheese. The relationship between dairy and
Huntington’s appears similar Huntington’s disease is a
horrible degenerative brain disease that
runs in families, whose early onset may be
doubled by dairy consumption, but again this may be
more milk consumption than cheese consumption, which brings us back
to the clue in the more-milk-more-mortality study. Anytime you hear disease risks
associated with more milk than cheese— more oxidative stress,
inflammation— we should think galactose,
the milk sugar rather than the milk fat,
protein, or pesticides. That’s why we think milk
drinkers specifically appeared to have higher risk
of bone fractures and death, and may explain the
neurodegeneration findings too, as not only do
rare individuals with an inability to
detoxify the galactose found in milk suffer
damage to their bones, but also to their brains.