Our expert says:
Drinking milk after working with hazardous chemicals is a long-standing tradition (e.g. painters often say it soothes their throats from paint fumes), but it's not standard practice as an official health and safety measure, and certainly shouldn't be used in place of such regulations. I'm not aware there's convincing evidence that drinking milk makes a difference to potential chronic (long-term low-level) exposure to hazardous substances, except that it's nutritious and a nutritious diet helps you stay healthy and fight off the effects of poisons, infections, etc. In cases of acute exposure (i.e. poisoning), the appropriate action is to get the person emergency medical care, and only give them milk if an authorised medical professional says to do so.
Any eating or drinking (of milk or any other fluid) should of course be done well away from any hazardous substances, and after the employee has washed up thoroughly.
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