Goat milk: the gentle and nutritious alternative
Goat milk has a number of unique characteristics that make it a gentle and nutritious alternative. The most important are its easy digestibility, its high level of important nutrients and its deliciously mild taste.
Goat milk is naturally easy to digest
Goat milk has a unique fat and protein composition, which makes it naturally easy to digest. The smaller fat globules and relatively high amounts of short- and medium-chain fatty acids found in goat milk are relatively easy for the body to break down. In addition the low amount of αs1-casein protein in goat milk helps to form a softer curd in the stomach and pass through the digestive system more gently.
Goat milk naturally contains high levels of important nutrients
Goat milk naturally has a deliciously mild taste
Goat milk vs Allergies and intolerances
Goat milk is, contrary to what people might believe, not a suitable alternative in situations where a cow milk allergy has been medically confirmed. A medically confirmed cow milk allergy occurs when the body triggers an immediate immune system reaction in response to the protein in cow milk. This affliction mostly affects children under six years of age (about 2 to 3%), but can affect adults as well. Experts believe that it is especially the αs1-casein protein that causes the allergic reaction, but despite of the relatively low amount of αs1-casein protein in goat milk, there is still a high risk of a cross reaction taking place.
Although goat milk isn’t a suitable alternative for people with a medically confirmed cow milk allergy, its relatively low amount of αs1-casein protein and its easy digestibility can make it a suitable alternative for people that are cow milk intolerant (not to be confused with a lactose intolerance) or that have an increased risk on developing an intolerance (for instance when it runs in the family). Consumers that are cow milk intolerant have trouble digesting certain components in cow milk (like fat or protein) for a non-apparent reason, leading to a large variety of discomforts, such as abdominal discomfort, constipation, colic and/or mild to moderate eczema. It is estimated that this last group is much larger and varies from 10 till 20% of the population.
If you suspect your baby or toddler to have a cow milk intolerance, than always make sure to consult your physician to rule out a medically confirmed cow milk allergy before switching to goat milk.