The topic of cows’ milk has drawn much attention recently with new brands of milk making a huge splash onto the market, and now lining supermarket fridges and shelves everywhere. Clearly there was a need for milk products other than cows’ milk, not just by a select few, rather by a whole lot of us in the community.
For many of us, cows’ milk comes with some challenges, for example, some find that it just doesn’t seem to sit well and appears to make us feel a little ‘off the mark’. Naturally, these concerns have also spilt over into the debate around formula for babies and toddlers, with questions around whether perhaps goats’ milk is an option for little ones who don’t have an allergy or intolerance, but find the transition to a cows’ milk-based formula not as flawless as hoped.
Most of us have a friend who has been frustrated, and not to mention upset, because their little one has ongoing, tummy upsets or skin complaints that just don’t seem to have a cause; they have exhausted all the potential options and appear to have hit a dead-end. A lucky few find the culprit and turn things around. For some, after the main contenders such as allergies and intolerances like lactose intolerance have been ruled out, the answer evades them and leaves them feeling overwhelmed and at a loss to know what to do next.
Increasingly there appears to be people experiencing positive outcomes from ‘new’ milks or from a switch to goats’ milk. Albeit largely anecdotal at this stage, it is there and there is a definite swing. Goats’ milk of course has been a traditional favourite of many healthful cultures. The idea that the possibility of sensitivity to milk or components of milk (other than lactose and the allergy-forming proteins) is gathering momentum, with a growing number of parents attesting to the benefits of a goats’ milk formula for their toddlers over cows’ milk-based options.
You may be surprised to know that while goats are responsible for just 2% of global animal milk production, in fact more people worldwide consume goats’ milk than any other animal milk. The attention goats’ milk is attracting has also seen the rise of some new and improved goats’ milk formulas.
Goats’ milk, which interestingly is more similar to human milk than cows’ milk (though don’t get me wrong, it is definitely not human breastmilk), has been found to have a number of potential benefits over other animal milks; goats’ milk appears to offer some improved outcomes for some little ones.
One of the benefits of goats’ milk may be due to its improved digestibility. Not to get too technical, because the process is quite complex, but the unique structure of the proteins in goats’ milk as well as the lipids (fats), and the actual digestion of goats’ milk in tummies resulting in softer casein curds (yes, as in ‘curds and whey’) make goats’ milk easier to digest. In fact, of a range of animal milks, goats’ milk has been shown to be one of the easiest to digest. And, while we are talking about the uniqueness of goats’ milk protein, it seems that such qualities makes goats’ milk less bitter to taste. You may have noticed this when comparing cows’ milk feta to traditional goats’ milk feta.
Another unique quality of goats’ milk is that it’s more alkaline (due to its protein and carbohydrate makeup) and contains more ash contents (that is all the inorganic matter of a food that remains when you remove the organic matter such as water, protein and so on), hence goats’ milk tends to have a higher mineral content.
For many, goats’ milk options have provided a real leap forward. All the benefits of healthy fats, vitamins and minerals plus protein for growth without the tummy upsets or skin rashes. To learn more about Bubs Goat Milk Formula click here.
Written by Leanne Cooper, Bubs Nutritionist and Founding Director of Cadence Institute of Nutrition and Health Coaching.
Nothing is too small to check
This information does not replace medical advice. Seek a suitably qualified health care professional to discuss your individual circumstances. If you are at all concerned about your baby’s or toddler’s feeding, growth or health, don’t hesitate to see your doctor or child health nurse. Small changes in a baby can have a big impact due to their rapid rate of growth, metabolic processes, still developing body organs and large body surface area. If in doubt, check it out!
- World Health Organisation - http://www.who.org
- Dietary Guidelines for Children & Adolescents: https://www.eatforhealth.gov.au/guidelines/australian-dietary-guidelines-1-5
- Food Standards Australia and New Zealand: http://www.foodstandards.gov.au
- Marketing of infant formula: http://www.health.gov.au/pubhlth/publicat/document/brfeed/marketing.htm