The World Health Organisation has published a report which highlights the risks of drinking milk.
The report says that many infants and young children have not been exposed to the full range of human milk proteins.
It is also recommended that parents limit their intake of cow milk, cow milk products, and skim milk to no more than five litres per day.
The World Food Programme (WFP) says that over 80% of milk sold in Australia comes from animals that have been raised on dairy farms.
The WFP says that the risks to babies are higher than for adults.
‘If a baby is breastfed, they are more likely to be protected against the risk of diarrhoea, pneumonia, and infections, such as measles, than if they are not,’ WFP spokeswoman Karen McAlpine said.
The guidelines recommend that parents should limit milk to five litres a day for infants.
‘We know that milk from cows raised for milk production is the most safe form of milk,’ Ms McAlpinne said.
‘However, this is not always the case.’
Some products can be contaminated with antibiotics, and some brands contain antibiotics that are not safe for humans.
‘In some instances, these are known to be antibiotics that can be harmful to humans, or can make people more likely get sick,’ WFPC spokeswoman Michelle McLean said.
She said the WFP would also be encouraging parents to take time to educate their children about how milk is made.
‘You want to educate your child that milk is not necessarily safe for infants, and that milk that is not properly pasteurized may be harmful,’ Ms McLellan said.
WFP also advises parents to limit the amount of milk they drink at a time.
‘A child may be drinking milk when they are in the first few days of life,’ Ms McMillan said, ‘but that could increase the risk for other illnesses, including diarrhoeas, pneumonia and other serious diseases.’
A child should be drinking at least two glasses of milk per day for all their babies, but no more, especially when they become older.’
When we speak to parents about milk safety, we ask them to take a look at the milk they are consuming and the type of milk produced in their home.’
Parents should be looking for products that they are comfortable drinking, such a lactose-free product, and have a plan in place to avoid exposure to these potentially harmful bacteria and viruses.’
If a child is breastfeeding, they may have a lower risk of getting diarrhoeae, pneumonia or other serious illnesses.’WFP recommends that parents not consume any milk that they do not feel is safe for their baby.
‘To ensure the best milk for your baby, please make sure you have a safe milk supply and plan your milk intake accordingly.’
As part of your milk supply plan, you should also include a safety check-up.’
We would encourage you to share milk in a safe way with your family, and also ensure that you share this milk with your friends and relatives, so that you do not have to travel to a different part of the world to buy milk.’