Dr. McDougall: Type 1 Diabetes Caused by Milk (VIDEO)

Jeff Nelson, Founder | 05/22/11

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Read More: autoimmune disease, colitis, dairy, lupus, milk, type 1 diabetes

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Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which the body's immune system attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas. The American Diabetic Association says that the causes of Type 1 diabetes are not known.


There may be different causes but one cause has been identified: exposure to cow's milk. Watch the video to understand the mechanism.

Type 1 diabetes strikes people at any age. It comes on suddenly, causes dependence on injected or pumped insulin for life, and carries the constant threat of devastating complications.

To stay alive, people with type 1 diabetes must take multiple insulin injections daily or continually infuse insulin through a pump. They must also test their blood sugar by pricking their fingers for blood six or more times a day. While trying to balance insulin doses with their food intake and daily activities, people with this form of diabetes still must always be prepared for serious hypoglycemic (low blood sugar) and hyperglycemic (high blood sugar) reactions, both of which can be life-limiting and life threatening.

As many as three million Americans may have type 1 diabetes, and each year more than 15,000 children and 15,000 adults are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.

But there's a pretty straightforward way to avoid it altogether: don't consume dairy products or consume animal proteins -- but especially milk, cheese and other milk products.

The same is true for myriad other autoimmune diseases, such as arthritis, colitis, lupus and many more.

Here at VegSource, before there was a VegSource, we discovered this when co-founder Sabrina was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disease called "relapsing polychondritis." For a year she suffered with it, taking powerful steroids and other drugs, all the while getting worse -- until she learned the information that Dr. McDougall teaches, such as the info in this video.

When Sabrina removed milk, after already being vegetarian, her autoimmune disease quickly went into remission, where it has stayed for over 15 years.






18 Comments | Leave a comment


Wonderful and very timely - I am in a discussion with someone who believes there is no evidence for a dietary link for Type 1 diabetes, so I am glad to have this to share!


I developed psoriasis, a chronic autoimmune disorder, the summer after my freshman year in college, when I was working in an ice cream parlor and eating a lot of ice cream. I have been afflicted with the disease for 34 years.

Despite adopting a vegan diet over 20 years ago, my psoriasis has never gone into remission. I long suspected that dairy was the culprit in the onset of my disease and would be grateful to Dr. McDougall for addressing psoriasis specifically, since it affects 7.5 million Americans.

Big Pharma is making a fortune on psoriasis sufferers by pushing powerful steroids and TNF inhibitors such as Humira (also prescribed for rheumatoid arthritis), which all carry harmful long-term side effects. There must be a dietary way for vegans afflicted with psoriasis to naturally achieve remission from our disease!


Please make sure that none of your shampoos or soaps in the house contain sodium lauryl (or laureth) sulfate. This is rampant in our household products and is a known skin irritant (google it). I was able to clear up my issues by changing diet AND this (and by eliminating chemical sunscreens, using mineral sunscreens instead).

I also use almond oil as a moisturizer on a regular basis.

Good luck.


I would like to know if these studies were conducted with pasturized milk or raw milk.

Palmitoleic acid, which occurs naturally in full fat,raw dairy products, protects against insulin resistance and diabetes. One study found people who consumed full fat dairy had higher levels
of trans-palmitoleate in their blood, and this translated to a two-thirds lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes compared to people
with lower levels.

I do believe that today's pasturized milk is a dead and even harmful food but I'm not convinced that the raw product from truly pastured, grass fed cows and goats have the same harmful components.


The protein in milk that causes the problem is beta casein, which is an intrinsic component of milk, not something that is added or a byproduct of processing. If anything, pasteurization probably denatures a significant amount of the protein, meaning raw milk may actually provoke more reaction in people with a compromised gut, at least in terms of autoimmune responses.


I have had type I diabetes for over a quarter of a century and have never understood why I have this condition. Dr. McDougall's information is enlightening. Before becoming a type I diabetic, for years I drank probably a gallon of milk a day along with plenty of cheese. Afterall, we were all told it was good for our bones! And, mind you, I also had a sinus infection more often than not. I am now certain those sinus infections were my body trying to tell me it was having a problem with the dairy. After being diagnosed with the type I diabetes, I tried countless ways to cure myself. In the process, I discovered eliminating the dairy eliminated the constant sinus infections. Now, with this information that Dr. McDougall has given about the antibodies that attack the beta cells, I am certain my dairy consumption is indeed the cause of my condition. Thank you Dr. McDougall, you have answered my always wondering why I have this condition. I wish I had known this when there was time to prevent my beta cells from total destruction. Following Dr. McDougall's recommended diet has lessened the amount of insulin I need to inject each day, but I will always need to deal with this disease, nonetheless. I am following his diet and lifestyle recommendations to avoid the long term complications of this disease and stay healthy regardless. Type I diabetes has made me very health conscious and for that I am thankful. I may never have had an interest in Dr. McDougall's insights were it not for my own health concerns. I hope his work will inspire many people to follow his diet and lifestyle recommendations while they still have time to reverse chronic conditions. I cannot speak highly enough about Dr. McDougall and his wife who has inspired me with her great and health promoting recipes! Thank you both!!!!!


Please please please add subtitle English or closed caption on all videos. I am deaf and deserve for healthy food and lifestyle.


If milk protein is the cause, how did my vegan relative get Type 1 Diabetes at age 2?


You are saying that your relative had no dairy since he was born and was diagnosed at age 2 with Type I diabetes? That's certainly possible. If you read the article above, it says that "there may be different causes of Type 1 diabetes" but that dairy has been identified as a cause.

Even the conservative American Academy of Pediatrics Work Group on Cow’s Milk Protein and Diabetes Mellitus – issued these warnings in 1994: "Early exposure of infants to cow's milk protein may be an important factor in the initiation of the beta cell destructive process in some individuals." and "The avoidance of cow's milk protein for the first several months of life may reduce the later development of IDDM or delay its onset in susceptible people."

Here are a couple of links to more info about the dairy/type 1 connection:

Here's an interesting study that backs up McDougall's points about the correlation of animal proteins and Type 1 diabetes:

Bottom line: there is no nutritional need for cows milk at any time of life for humans; but there are clear risks for people who may at one time or another have leaky gut syndrome.


So what he is saying here is all dairy products are bad?

What about A2 milk? (A2 beta-casein protein) which helps reduce type 1 diabetes, compared to the normal A1 milk that increases the risk. A lot of studies believe that A2 milk is safe and has reduced chronic conditions such as Type 1 Diabetes; Crohn's Disease; Asthma; Allergies; Autism (including Asperger's Syndrome); Irritable Bowel Syndrome; Multiple Sclerosis; Parkinson's Disease; and other auto-immune disorders is that true? Well I have researched and it is claimed by scientific evidence that it is true. In terms of regularly drinking A2 milk is safe? yes or no?

Also raw dairy products such as goats cheese, raw yoghurt (A2 natural and yoghurt) and rice milk are these harmful?


I have a friend who is type 1 and I would like to send him this link, however the video does not have English subtitles. Can you please add it? We are deaf and would appreciate the visual language that goes with visual media. Thank you so much and please contact me once the English subtitles have been added.


Here's a new study implicating cow's milk protein in babies' formula, among other things, to the development of type 1 diabetes in children.


Please look up Dr V.M.Palaniappan's ( and research findings which prove that ALL diseases are due to the accumulation of excess free calcium in the soft tissues, due to under-urination (irrespective of the quantity of water consumed) rapid eating, profuse sweating, avoidance of acidic foods and fruits, under or over exposure to sunshine, excessive consumption of calsium-rich and calcium enriched foods calcium supplementation and chronic constipation.Please google "" and click on Features to get full article. So if you are a vegan you can be at risk too as all veges contain calcium in varying quantities!Pls visit and his blog at


I have a friend who has diabetes, I will pass on the info. Thanks


I have been following, very closely, the plant whole foods nutrition way and trying to get to grips with it at a scientific level - with as modicum of success!
One of the fascinating leads I have been following is the place of the human antigen Neu5GC, found in many animal meats and milk, in ill-health.
One of the most interesting research reports I have found is here;
"Evidence for a novel human-specific xeno-auto-antibody response against vascular endothelium" copyright by The American Society of Hematology.

From their discussion - "Taken together, these findings suggest a mechanism whereby anti-Neu5Gc antibodies can initiate, perpetuate, and/or exacerbate an inflammatory response at the endothelium, potentially playing a role in disease states such as atherosclerosis, wherein vascular inflammation is involved. Neu5Gc is a novel dietary and human-specific “xeno-auto-antigen” that may exacerbate a variety of vascular pathologies. Diets recommended by the US Department of Agriculture lead one to ingest approximately 10 mg of Neu5Gc per day.8 The primary dietary sources appear to be red meat (lamb, pork, and beef) and milk products, with Neu5Gc being conspicuously low in poultry and fish and absent from plants. Thus, long-term Neu5Gc intake and metabolic incorporation can explain our immunohistochemical finding of a strong Neu5Gc signal in the endothelial lining of blood vessels of human tissues."
Thanks, charles


many times I have heard about this that cow-milk consumption in the cause of type 1 diabetes. If you are diabetic patient then try to avoid cow-milk and related food. It is really very hard to ignore the strong connection between cow's milk.


If you have Type1 diabetes, You must plan your meal with help dietitian to control Blood sugar level.
prevent sweating


When diabetic or pre-diabetic patients remove all forms of animal protein from their diet, their levels normalize & their need for insulin or medication lessens over time & often they get weaned entirely off it. And it happens rather quickly.

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