Guest (2): We were very interested in your comments on the dairy industry in particular. Dr. Harrap is in charge of the dairy research. How do you relate your strong interest in dairy products to modern thinking on cholestrol and similar problems? This doesn't disturb you?
Satsvarūpa: There are modern theories that milk is actually harmful.
Dr. Harrap: Well, that butter...
Dr. Muncing: The milkfat and...
Dr. Harrap: Yes, milkfat.
Prabhupāda: Milk is harmful? How it is harmful? If it is harmful why you are giving milk to the child?
Dr. Harrap: There is a certain difference here in that milk that we get from cows has a very low proportion of what we call polyunsaturated fatty acids, only about two per cent, whereas in human milk this is about ten or twelve percent. It's a much higher level. So milk from cows, which are ruminants, is quite a lot different from the milk that we get from the non-ruminants, and of course, humans are non-ruminants.
Prabhupāda: But I think there is a book, "Miracles of Milk," written by one American gentleman. He has greatly valued the milk and milk products. Similarly, we Indians, we give very, very importance to milk and milk products.
Dr. Harrap: Yes, I think this is so, has always been so here, but in recent years there has been shown to be a relationship between the cholestrol level in the blood and the ratio between the saturated and polyunsaturated fat in the diet. The lower the level of polyunsaturated fat, the higher the level of cholestrol in the blood. And this has been associated with heart disease. So there is quite a move to, among many in the medical profession to prescribe diets which are low in saturated fats.
Prabhupāda: (aside:) Have you got our picture, Kṛṣṇa stealing butter?
Dr. Harrap: And we are doing some quite interesting work at the dairy research laboratory aimed at making ruminants' milk, cow's milk, much more like human milk in this way by a special feeding techniques to the cows.
Prabhupāda: Yes, milk means cow's milk. Milk means cow's milk because you find in this book that kṛṣi-go-rakṣya. Go means cow. Cow protection, cow's milk is important, not other animal's milk.
Dr. Harrap: Yes, what about human milk?
Prabhupāda: Human milk is natural.
Dr. Harrap: Yes, but then that's very different to cow's milk.
Guest (2): It's very obvious that His Grace isn't suffering from cholestrol. (laughter) Cholestrol is no problem for you.
Dr. Harrap: But we've had very close connections with India in the dairy research laboratory in that Dr. Chulak... Yes, you know him? One of our staff members some years ago spent several months in India developing methods of making cheese from buffaloes' milk.
Prabhupāda: No, India's position is different now. India has practically no milk, and no food. Due to our leaders' mismanagement, there is no milk. India is depending on your milk powder sent by Australia or by Europe. There is no milk. But milk is very important because Kṛṣṇa said that kṛṣi-go-rakṣya-vāṇijyaṁvaiśya-karma svabhāva-jam [Bg. 18.44]. Find out that verse. You do not have that Kṛṣṇa Book?
"Translation: Farming, cattle-raising and business are the qualities of work for the vaiśyas, and for the śūdras there is labor and service to others..."
Prabhupāda: So Kṛṣṇa... We are following the leadership of Kṛṣṇa. Kṛṣṇa was so fond of cows, cows' milk, cows' butter, that He was stealing cows' butter. Yes. Find out that picture.
Guest (2): Brian, you said it was the proportion between polyunsaturated and...
Dr. Harrap: The ratio between them, largely.
Guest (2): I see, rather than the quantity.
Dr. Harrap: Well, you should... The advice is that you keep your general level of fats down, but of the fats that you take, you should increase the ratio between polyunsaturated and saturated. But there is quite a development of milk industry in parts of India. The complex near Annakadana(?), I think, is a very good example of this, isn't it, of the, I believe, the cooperative dairy complex.
Prabhupāda: No, practically also we see. Formerly big, big saintly person they used to live in the forest, and their livelihood was fruits and milk. They used to keep cows and draw milk from them, and whatever fruits are available in the forest, and they have given us these literatures, Vyāsadeva. So the... He has written Mahābhārata, one hundred thousand verses and similarly, this Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam, he has given us eighteen thousand verses. And each verse is full of so grave meaning that if you study, it will take months and months together. So they developed such nice brain simply by drinking milk and fruits. Yes.
Room Conversation with Scientists -- July 2, 1974, Melbourne