The dairy industry pays for and fixes research, it receives massive subsidies from the state to help it do so. Dr McDougall explains in this presentation.
start at around 15 minutes in to see him explain rigged research
I'm only getting started on the video, but the claims he makes about the studies don't actually match the data from the studies.
From the Youtube clip:
Study subjects who received the extra milk for a year lost more bone than those who didn't drink the milk.
Pull up the study he cites and have a look:
Bone remodeling rates changed significantly with milk supplementation and, as predicted from our previous studies (14,18), both accretion [bone creation] and resorption [bone breakdown] decreased, resorption more so (-0.060gm/d vs. -0.105gm/d) than accretion. The difference in change between these measurements accounts for the improvement in balance of +0.044 gm/d (+-0.071).
Uhm. So maybe my knowledge of statistics is bad, but doesn't 0.044 (+-) 0.071 mean the actual difference could have been anywhere from +0.115 to -0.027, meaning it could have been 0 and isn't a statistically significant difference?
If so, I disagree with both the researchers' conclusion and Dr. McDougall's... it seems possible that milk supplementation made no difference at all.
His analysis of the review isn't quite right either.
From the actual study:
The overall ratio of favorable
to unfavorable effects in the stronger studies
was 2.0 (4.0 in <30-y-olds, 1.0 in 30–50-y-olds, and 1.0 in
So it looks like the favorable effects predominated in <30 year olds; in anyone 30+ the favorable and unfavorable effects were equal.
30 years is roughly the age at which your body switches over from predominately creating bone to favoring resorption (bone breakdown).
My conclusion so far is that the effects of calcium on bone health AFTER the age of 30 are probably way overblown by the media, medical establishment, etc.
Also from the study:
Dairy food intake generally accounts for a small proportion of the variance in bone mass. In 912 women, Yano et al (23
) found that age, body size, hormone replacement therapy status, and thiazide use collectively explained 22–36% of bone mass
variation; dairy calcium intake explained <0.3% (23
). In 2025 women, Honkanen et al (22
) found that age, body weight, years to menopause, and hormone replacement therapy explained 25% of bone mass variation; dairy
calcium intake explained <0.7% (22
). In 11000 women, Honkanen et al (20
) found that high dairy calcium intake was associated with a reduction in the risk of bone fracture of <1% (P
= 0.03). These results raise the possibility that dairy food intake has a small effect on bone health.
If it is true that dairy calcium intake explains between <0.3 and <0.7% of bone mass variation, is it really something the media and medical establishment need to be shouting about as loudly as they are?