Raw milk otherwise known as Fura da Nono can carry harmful germs that can make you very sick or kill you. If you’re thinking about drinking fura da nono because you believe it has health benefits, consider other options and AskMe: Fura da Nono Know the Raw Facts.
Developing a healthy lifestyle requires you to make many decisions. One step you might be thinking about is adding raw milk to your diet. Raw milk is milk that has not been pasteurized (heating to a specific temperature for a set amount of time to kill harmful germs). Germs include bacteria, viruses, and parasites.
Making milk safe
Milk and products made from milk need minimal processing, called pasteurization. This process includes:
- Heating the milk briefly (for example, heating it to 161°F for about 15 seconds)
- Rapidly cooling the milk
- Practicing sanitary handling
- Storing milk in clean, closed containers at 40°F or below
When milk is pasteurized, disease-causing germs such as: Pseudomonads aeruginosa are killed. Harmful germs usually don’t change the look, taste, or smell of milk, so you can only be confident that these germs are not present when milk has been pasteurized.
Risks of drinking raw milk
As noted at the onset, fura da nono can carry harmful bacteria and other germs that can make you very sick or even kill you. While it is possible to get foodborne illnesses from many different foods, raw milk is one of the riskiest of all. Getting sick from raw milk can mean many days of diarrhea, stomach cramping, and vomiting. Less commonly, it can mean kidney failure, paralysis, chronic disorders, and even death.
Many people who chose fura da nono thinking they would improve their health instead found themselves (or their loved ones) sick in a hospital for several weeks fighting for their lives from infections caused by germs in fura da nono. For example, a research work carried out by: Musliu Abdulkadir and Aliyu Garba Mugadi in Birnin Kebbi, Nigeria and published ejournalofScience shows the different strains of microbes present in Fura da nono.
Who is at greatest risk of getting sick from drinking raw milk?
The risk of getting sick from drinking raw milk is greater for
- young children,
- the elderly, and
- people with weakened immune systems, such as people with cancer, an organ transplant, or HIV/AIDS.
However, it is important to remember that healthy people of any age can get very sick or even die if they drink raw milk that is contaminated with harmful germs.
Why do People Drink Raw Milk?
Some people choose to drink fura da nono because they have heard that fura da nono may be a good source of beneficial bacteria. Unfortunately, fura da nono can also contain harmful bacteria. If you are looking for sources of bacteria that may be beneficial to your health, consider getting them from foods that do not involve as high of a risk as raw milk. For example, so-called probiotic bacteria are sometimes added to pasteurized, fermented foods, such as yogurt.
Many people also believe that small, local farms are better sources of healthy food. There are many local, small farms that offer pasteurized organic milk and cheese products.
How does milk get contaminated?
Milk contamination may occur from:
- Germs such as Escherichia coli, Campylobacter, and Salmonella can contaminate milk during the process of milking dairy animals, including cows, sheep, and goats. Animals that carry these germs usually appear healthy.
- Cow feces coming into direct contact with the milk
- Infection of the cow’s udder (mastitis)
- Cow diseases (e.g., bovine tuberculosis)
- Bacteria that live on the skin of cows
- Environment (e.g., feces, dirt, processing equipment)
- Insects, rodents, and other animal vectors
- Humans, for example, by cross-contamination from soiled clothing and boots
Pasteurization is the only way to kill many of the bacteria in milk that can make people very sick.
As a consumer, you can take steps to minimize the risk of getting sick:
- Only consume pasteurized milk and milk products. Look for the word “pasteurized” on the dairy labels. If in doubt, don’t buy it!
- Keep pasteurized dairy products refrigerated at 40°F or below at home and dispose of any expired products to reduce the risk of illness.
Bottom line: Protect yourself and your loved ones. Avoid raw milk, it’s just not worth the risk.
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