A2 beta-casein - Milk

A2 beta-casein - Milk

A2 beta-casein milk - this allegedly is the original type of cows' milk that was present on our planet thousands of years ago. In recent times with intense breeding programmes, cows' milk changed and an additional form of protein beta-casein called A1 began to appear in cows' milk. It is claimed by some that it is this additional beta-casein that causes problems in the digestive system of humans.

I'm not sure whether this may be the answer to people who currently are having problems with dairy products. (Perhaps, those that do have issues and are lactose intolerant could kindly add their opinion in the comments below.)

Apparently, all of the ancient types of herds of related animals to cows such as buffalo and zebu and a few traditional cattle herds only have the A2 beta-casein protein in their milk.

worldguernseys.org/PageMill...

It is alleged by some that it is the fact that there is A1 beta-casein protein in ordinary dairy milk that has helped to raise the incidence of diabetes in rats. And to give further 'food for thought' human milk is also A2.

The reason for my blog post here is that I noticed whilst out shopping today that the supermarket had some A2 milk on the shelf .. I had never heard of it before and so looked it up when I got back home. There is quite extensive information on the Net but for those who want a quick read of where it originated here is the A2 website:

a2milk.com.au/

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  • Further information on milk: apparently there is an additive which is being added to some milk supplies. There is more information about it in Australia than over here in the UK, although dairies are alledged to be adding it. Here is one of the British sites explaining what is in this additive called 'permeate' -

    ukpmc.ac.uk/abstract/AGR/IN...

    Here is another link that also gives an explanation:

    au.news.yahoo.com/today-ton...

    It is claimed that the 'old-fashioned' variety A2 milk, does not have permeates added to it. Whether permeates are a health concern or not, is another question altogether. It doesn't really seem appealing that anything may be used to change the original pure product in any way though. Perhaps there should be a message on milk bottles and cartons if anything has been added to them.

  • I think ANYTHING added to our foods should be communicated to us! :-0

  • It looks as though some dairies may be using permeate powder ..... I had no idea that anything was added to milk at all.

    wired-gov.net/wg/wg-news-1....

  • Hi Lynxcat, all very interesting and it shows how we have manipulated nature.

    Here's a link that may interest you as they inject growth hormones to many farm animals and this stays in the food chain and this is a short extract from there as it's also about milk production:

    '' Scientists believe about two-thirds of American cattle raised in for slaughter today are injected with hormones to make them grow faster and America’s dairy cows are given a genetically-engineered hormone called rBGH to increase milk production. ''

    sustainabletable.org/issues...

    And we the consumer are ingesting these hormones in our food and the big question is how do they affect us?

    This is an extract from the same article:

    How Wholesome Is Your Milk?

    Industrial farms use a number of methods for increasing milk production in dairy cows, including selective breeding, feeding grain-based diets (instead of grass), and exposing cows to longer periods of artificial light. Yet, one of the most common and controversial ways to force greater milk production is to inject them with rBGH (recombinant bovine growth hormone), a genetically engineered artificial growth hormone.

  • As a dairy intolerant person and the mother of children who get very sick from all dairy I was very interested in this. The A2 people actually found me through my blog etc and approached me to join their test market. I was very nervous as the word milk makes me feel sick and I know it has a bad effect on my children. So I agreed to take some on a free trial. I didn't give it to the children but did try some myself and have to say it was different and did not upset my stomach. It did not leave me with the greasy feeling in the throat and the nauseous feeling all day.

    So their claims appear to be true. A2 milk is easier to digest. However, we do all need to be careful because from what I can see it only solves the problem for the lactose intolerant people. I am waiting to speak to a gut specialist before I dare introduce it to our family diet and start using it. As far as I know, if you are dairy allergic, this is not going to be suitable. Equally, any coeliacs may still suffer, because any kind of dairy is hard going on a sensitive and aggravated gut.

    It is positive to think that some dairy might be suitable in the future, but all the while 'junk' dairy is put in foods that it has no place in, then many of us will still need to lead a dairy free existence. I doubt food labelling will ever state whether the dairy in some foods is from A2 milk so it will always remain a gamble.

    As far as I can see it is a solution and alternative for milk on cereal, in tea and home baking, but otherwise the dairy free guys probably still need to be extremely cautious.

    What is most alarming of course is that this has brought to light the fact that a lot of dairy is 'very bad' and not pure and does have something wrong with it. I get sick of people telling me that 'this generation of kids' is defective or somehow weak because, so many like my little boy are gluten and dairy intolerant. It has long been my hunch that it is not their fault. Or mine. I did nothing wrong when I was carrying him or weaning him. Instead, 'something' did get into the food chain and something has gone very badly wrong in food production several years ago and the effect is that we have poisoned a generation.

    As everyone says, 'in my day' kids could eat anything - why can't they now?'. Perhaps we are now discovering the answer to this question. Milk is not the milk we had and don't even start me on the wheat and gluten containing foods. But I am sure it won't be long before that gets uncovered. In the mean time many of us will continue to battle with our diets and trying to stay well and no-one is going to be held accountable for this.

  • I read an interesing article some while back about how homogonisation (which we didnt have a while ago) breaks the atoms up so small they can permeate the gut wall causing allergies.

    Certainly I cannot tolerate much dairy, organic seems easier to tolerate.

    Anyone else heard of this?

  • Channel 4's Food Hospital on at 8.00 pm on 24th October is to feature milk this week .... I wonder whether they will be able to enlighten us on any of the above. I suppose we haven't long to wait until we find out. Let's hope that it's a useful report:

    foodhospital.channel4.com/

  • I've been reading up on A2 milk for some years. For those who are interested and distrust material put out by the promoters of A2 milk, an excellent independent book on the subject is "Devil in the Milk" by Professor Keith Woodford. He also has a blogsite at <http://keithwoodford.wordpress.com>

    The scientists behind A2 milk do NOT claim it is okay for people diagnosed as lactose intolerant, because A2 milk contains the normal amount of lactose. But a lot of people who may believe themselves to be lactose intolerant are in fact intolerant of something else in milk, other than lactose, and may find A2 is the answer to their problem.

    Most milk available on the market is a mixture of A1 and A2 milk. Originally all cows were pure A2, as is human mothers' milk. But because of a genetic mutation that started occurring in some European cows several thousand years ago, the A1 gene became common, and most milk now sold in supermarkets is a mixture of A1 and A2. Milk that comes either from A1 cows or from cows with an A1/A2 mix of genes will yield a potentially harmful by-product in the digestive process known as BCM-7 that can enter the bloodstream of some susceptible consumers (notably those with "leaky gut") and has been linked with a range of health problems including heart disease, type 2 diabetes and autism.

    The epidemiological evidence of such a link is very strong, and is backed up by an increasing amount of clinical research, but it will be a long time before actual causation is proved beyond doubt, just as it took many decades to "prove" smoking caused lung cancer. However, the evidence was strong enough for A2 milk to be put on the market in New Zealand and Australia to help discerning customers reduce exposure to these important health conditions by selecting milk only from cows that were pure A2. In an average herd in the UK and Europe, probably between a quarter and a third of cows are pure A2, and can be easily identified through a simple test. They are milked separately from the others.

    In Australia, where A2 milk is widely available, many consumers who incorrectly believed themselves to be "lactose intolerant" tried it, and to the surprise even of its promoters found they could happily consume A2 milk. It wasn't the lactose in supermarket milk that caused their problem, it was obviously the A1 component. Many parents of autistic children have also reported a significant improvement and greater milk tolerance after switching to A2 milk.

    A2 milk is now being made available in the UK to help those with a dairy intolerance other than lactose intolerance. You won't hear its promoters talking much about the linkages between A1 and heart disease, type 1 diabetes, autism etc, because major dairy interests and health and food safety authorities don't want the public to be put off ordinary milk. Milk, even if it is partly A1, has many important health benefits to the general population, which are seen as outweighing any possible link with health conditions in a small proportion of consumers.

    Hope this is helpful.

    nickt

  • Sounds interesting, but where do you obtain the A2 milk.

  • You can buy it in Waitrose now, as well as Morrisons, Budgens, and larger Tesco stores.

    a2milk.co.uk/a2-store-finder

    Milk that is from Jersey and Guernsey cows is also supposed to have the highest amounts of A2 protein, although not advertised as such. I've been buying Guernsey butter, it's very nice, and I think it's easier on my tummy. Although butter has very low levels of protein anyway.

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