By Luella May (Reprinted by permission of author from NaturalNews.com) – In western civilization, most milk consumption is in the form of pasteurized and homogenized cow milk. Although such milk is portrayed as being healthy, it actually can lead to impaired health, including allergies, tooth decay, colic in babies, arthritis, heart disease, and even cancer. A much better choice is raw milk, and, though generally more difficult to find, the best raw milk of all is raw goat milk. As the Journal of American Medicine states, “Goat milk is the most complete food known.”
Milk from goats is the most highly consumed milk in many other parts of the world, and it is delicious as well as extremely nutritious. Goat milk benefits include vitamins, minerals, trace elements, electrolytes, enzymes, proteins, and fatty acids that are easily assimilated by the body. It is interesting to note that goat milk is digested in 20 minutes; whereas, it can take up to 24 hours to digest cow milk.
Pasteurization and homogenization are not what nature intended. These processes destroy valuable natural enzymes and nutrients that our bodies utilize to sustain health. They also alter food chemicals and make fats rancid.
Goat and cow milk differ greatly in their nutritional composition. Goat milk does not contain the complex protein that stimulates allergic reactions, making it less allergic. It also helps to boost the immune system. Goat milk alkalizes the digestive system and also helps to increase the pH level in the blood stream. Furthermore, goat milk does not produce mucus and will not worsen allergic respiratory conditions such as asthma.
Goat milk also contains less of the enzyme xanthise oxidase. When entering the blood stream, this enzyme can cause tissue on the heart to scar that results in the liver supplying more cholesterol in order to protect the heart. Arteriosclerosis can be the result of this mechanism. Additionally, homogenization of milk products has also been linked to heart disease.
People who are lactose intolerant may find goat milk to be a good alternative source of milk. Goat milk contains less lactose than cow milk and passes through the digestive system more rapidly. Most lactose intolerant people have no difficulty tolerating goat’s milk.
Additionally, raw goat milk fights microbes, primarily due to the healthy medium-chained fatty acids it contains, such as capric and caprylic acids. It is very important to note that raw goat milk is rich in selenium, a necessary bodily nutrient known for its immune strengthening and antioxidant properties.
Raw goat milk soothes the digestive tract. People with conditions such as bloating, diarrhea, asthma, and irritability may very well be suffering from an allergic reaction to cow milk. Raw goat milk on the other hand, can be comfortably consumed without triggering these allergic responses. Because of its effective acid buffering capacity, goat milk has been used to treat conditions such as ulcers.
Children with problems digesting cow milk may have a viable alternative in raw goat milk. Goat milk is a natural food that children can consume comfortably, even if they are sensitive to cow or other forms of milk. In fact, goat milk is very similar to human milk. Children who drink goat milk tend to remain more satisfied between meals and sleep through the night.
In conclusion, goat milk provides excellent health benefits, is delicious and is well tolerated — as opposed to today’s pasteurized and homogenized varieties, which are not only less nutritious and less tolerated, but also can be a precursor to poor health.
About the Author
Luella May is a natural health advocate helping people to heal naturally. She partners with Tony Isaacs, who authors of books and articles about natural health including Cancer’s Natural Enemy and Collected Remedies. Luella contributes to The Best Years in Life website for baby boomers and others wishing to avoid prescription drugs and mainstream managed illness and live longer, healthier and happier lives naturally. Luella co-moderates the CureZone “Ask Tony Isaacs” forum as well as the Yahoo Health Group “Oleander Soup” and hosts her own Yahoo group focusing on the natural wellbeing of pets.
Originally published in the July/August 2011 issue of Dairy Goat Journal.
Researchers Explain Goat Milk Composition
By Barnet Harris, Jr., and Frederick Springer
The composition of goat milk varies within and between dairy goat breeds. Various values have been reported for each of the nutrients. This has undoubtedly resulted from analyzing milk from a single breed, a single herd, or the analytical techniques used. Goat milk contains more fat and ash than cow milk, but has less lactose. Generally, the composition of goat milk can be expected to fall within a specified range for each milk component. Fat, the most variable component, will usually fall between 3.0 to 6.0% in herd samples. However, values outside this range are not uncommon for individual samples. The ranges that can be expected for total solids, protein, lactose, and ash are 12-16, 3-4, 3.8-4.8 and 0.70-0.95 respectively.
The protein in goat milk can be divided into casein and whey protein. Casein accounts for about 83% of the total protein and is the primary protein fraction in cheese products. Casein will coagulate under certain conditions and can be removed from the milk. Rennet, acid, and a combination of pepsin and acid will all coagulate casein in milk. Each method closely resembles a natural process of casein coagulation. Rennet coagulation is the process that is used in cheese making. The addition of acid increases the acidity of milk until the casein coagulates in the same manner as sour milk, and the human digestive process is stimulated by the acid-pepsin coagulation of casein.
Whey is the clear liquid that remains after casein is removed from the milk. Proteins that remain in the whey are the whey proteins. Both casein and whey proteins are general categories of proteins. Each contains many individual proteins. Many of these proteins are similar to cow proteins and cause identical allergic reactions. However, there are specific proteins in goat milk and these are immunologically distinct from proteins in cow’s milk.
Curd formed in goat milk with acid-pepsin treatment is apparently softer than the similarly formed curd of cow milk. However, curd formed with rennet appears to be stronger in goat’s milk than in cow’s milk. Curd strength varies between individual animals and lactation. Curd strength decreases to minimum in mid-lactation and then increases to the end of lactation.
Although the average percentage of fat in goat milk is 4.25% (Table 1), it varies with individual animals, breeds, state of lactation, and type of feed. Goat milk fat contains appreciable amounts of caproic, caprylic, and capric fatty acids. Although these fatty acids are not unique to the goat, they are more abundant in goat milk than milk from other species. They are responsible for the characteristic flavor and odor of cheeses made from goat milk.
Goat milk contains a higher proportion of small fat globules than cow milk but is similar to sheep milk in this respect. This has been interpreted as the reason for the slow creaming of goat milk. However, the primary reason for slow creaming is the absence of fat globule clustering. Cow milk contains a protein, not found in goat milk, that causes fat globules to cluster, thus creaming at a rapid rate.
Considerable information has been compiled concerning the vitamins in the milk of various species. The primary difference between goat milk and cow milk is the much lower concentration of
B6 and B12 in goat milk. However, when considering the use of goat milk for infant food it bears consideration that goat milk is nearly as high in vitamin B6 and twice as high in vitamin B12 as human milk. Cow milk is extremely low in vitamin D and none is listed in the table. However, most commercial milk is fortified with vitamin D. It is very interesting to note that vitamin A in goat milk exists exclusively as vitamin A and not carotenoid pigments. Carotenoid pigments are precursors of vitamin A and are present at varying levels in cow milk depending upon the breed. Carotenoid pigments cause fat to have various degrees of yellow coloring. Their absence in goat milk causes butter made from goat cream to be white.
This document is CIR452, one of a series of the Animal Science Department, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida. Original publication date November 1992. Reviewed June 2003. Barnet Harris, Jr., Professor, and Frederick Springer, Dairy Science undergraduate student, Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, 32611.
Originally published in the July/August 2011 issue of Dairy Goat Journal.