Tuesday, April 2, 2013

When You're Less Than a Cow

I'm continuing to feel shock at the constant defense in my newsfeed for  The Weston A. Price Foundation (WAPF, also Nourishing Traditions/NT) on the tail of their recent transparency regarding breastfeeding and nutritional comparisons. (Quick summary: here and here. Longer summary with links and screenshots here.)

Regardless of the nutritional information presented by WAPF, inherently their individual comparison of human milk, donor human milk, vegan eating, formula, etc is incorrect. Period.

"But nutrition matters!"
I have not seen ANYONE in Facebookland claiming that nutrition is without value or meaning. In fact, the majority of people in the natural movement emphasize nutrition and spend a lot of time encouraging awareness and healthier living, often in line with WAPF principles. The problem is that regardless of the nutrition point, claiming raw human milk is lesser than store bought formula simply fails. Left, right, up, down...fail. Complete fail to the point of abject ignorance.

"But you can't deny that nutrition is important and changes genes/health/conditions!" 
First, yes, I can and have frequently. Using food medicinally is a cornerstone of the health movement but it is not a guarantee. Or else did someone find immortality? Hmm, guess not.

But those who claim nutrition is the key point about breast milk comparison lose me here. It's hypocritical to claim WAPF is talking about nutrition, b/c commercialized formula lists GMO corn syrup solids as the first/second ingredient. That's NOT nutrition, and certainly not "better" nutrition than the species specific, raw milk of a vegan mama.

But, wait, there's more! Formula also uses denatured, contaminated animal milk from an anonymous group of animals of another species that are not intended to grow a human infant. These cows are extremely nutritionally deficient, without argument, way beyond any perception of a vegan mother. Besides not making milk intended for HUMAN growth, with human stem cells and antibodies, their milk is additionally processed, overheated and contaminated in a facility, then synthetic crap vitamins are added to it and then it's placed into a contaminated container.

Anyone who is going to sit here and try to claim that WAPF is right on this topic has completely lost her marbles and is making the natural movement the laughing stock of communities. It doesn't even make sense.

Let's say we all accept that some women due to their diet are not making "healthy enough" milk for their babies. Even if that's true, the goal is to encourage a change in diet and to provide resources and ideas on how to optimize the diet, including in cases with limited resources. Not remove the minimal nutrition from the baby, replacing it with something that has less nutrition and is also devoid of all other species-specific health components.

Something stinks here! If a mama can't afford to eat well to change her milk, exactly how is she supposed to afford the many expensive, hard to get ingredients required for suitable home made formula. (Raw cow milk? It's going for $5-10 a gallon in my area.) And store bought formula is an expense as well. What makes sense? Encourage creative, inexpensive ways for the mama to improve her diet for both her and her baby. Don't promote the idea that her milk is inferior, or that milk substitutes are superior, or that she should wean to protect her baby.

Furthermore, simply because the original man that this organization uses was right in his own way based on his own observations, does NOT mean we have to sit around listening to the gobbledy gook put out by this group. Nor does it mean they get a free pass to spout this stuff. ESPECIALLY when they are breaking WHO code, promoting "home made formula kits" for sale.

If Enfamil or Similac came out saying their formulas were better than some human milk, and offered "formula kits" for sale, there'd be a butchering going on in our community right now. But it's WAPF so everyone is looking the other way or warning, "Don't get angry. Keep it private. Don't talk about them publicly. Don't smear them."

Forget that! This is pure ignorance and needs to STOP. We deserve an evidence-based, accurate community. Mothers deserve an accurate, complete picture not only about nutrition but about anatomy and physiology. And becoming a hypocrite to protect "one of our own" brings about nothing good for anyone involved.

Here is WAPF's list:
(Photo credit: Sarah at Debunked on Facebook)

Here is WHO's list:


  1. Agreed. Completely. I have unsubscribed to the healthy home economist's blog and facebook page after her presentation (which I didn't watch; the summary disgusted me), and I used to read her page regularly. I agree with the WAPF on some things, but I find myself wanting to disassociate myself completely after this.

  2. Thank you for coming out and saying this. I haven't been able to stand WAPF for years (and they have been saying things like this for years). WAPF had some good original points, but they have made themselves ridiculous for a buck. Gross.

  3. What does WAPF have against vegans? I find it hard to respect it when they are so crazy about vegans, not to mention totally misinformed about breastmilk and breastfeeding.