chapter  5
GROWING CHILDREN AROUND THE WORLD: The Globalization of Childhood Milk Consumption
Pages 21

In his widely read book of essays Good to Eat: Riddles of Food and Culture, the late anthropologist Marvin Harris described population variation in lactose digestion and divided human societies into “lactophiles” and “lactophobes.” He argued that not only were there population differences in the frequency of lactase persistence, but these tended to correlate with views about the “goodness” of milk. For Harris, the fondness for or disdain of milk was a profound delineator of cultural difference, with the lactophiles notably in the minority.