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While goat milk may be harder to acquire in terms of availability and access in some parts of the world, the impressive health benefits of goat milk, and the recent research into its positive effects on the human body have made it a very popular choice in recent years. Although goats only produce about 2% of the global milk supply, it is cheaper to process, due to it not requiring homogenization (the small fat molecules do not separate and remain suspended in the cream). Goat milk is commonly processed into cheeses, butter, ice cream, and yoghurts, many of which are considered delicacies due to their high buttermilk content and rich consistency. The beneficial effects of goat milk are discussed below.
This is one of the most common characteristics of all forms of milk, and the main reason why we tell our children that milk is so important. Milk of all varieties is rich in calcium, and goat milk is no exception. In addition, goat milk gives you comparable amounts of calcium as cow's milk without so many of the side effects, ensuring that our calcium deposits stay rich and stable, and our bones don’t experience bone mineral density loss as we age, thereby helping to prevent osteoporosis.
One reason why people tend to love goat milk is that they are able to enjoy it without the common inflammation and upset stomachs that cow milk so often causes. This is due to the unique enzymatic make-up of goat milk that soothes inflammation in the gut. Research is ongoing to see whether these anti-inflammatory properties extend to other areas of the body, but one thing is for certain, it’s definitely better for your stomach.
One of the main benefits of goat milk is that the chemical composition is far closer to human milk than cow milk. Essentially, humans are designed to be breast-fed, just like goats and cows, but human milk is similar to goat milk, so our bodies are able to get more nutrients out of the milk as it moves through our system and it causes less stress on our digestive processes.
Goat milk is far more nutrient-dense than cow milk, meaning that you don’t need as much of it to receive the same (or better) nutrient intake. A single cup provides nearly 40% of our daily calcium requirements, 20% of our vitamin B intake, as well as significant amounts of potassium and phosphorous. Furthermore, studies have shown that goat milk can help increase the uptake of iron and copper in our digestive tract, which is essential for people who struggle with anemia and other nutrient deficiencies.
There are nearly twice as many beneficial fatty acids in goat milk as can be found in cow milk, which means that our cholesterol balance can be helped significantly by goat milk. By balancing our essential fatty acids in the body, we can prevent atherosclerosis, strokes, heart attacks, and other coronary complications. The high potassium levels in goat milk also help to reduce blood pressure, as potassium is a vasodilator that relaxes blood vessels and relieves tension on the cardiovascular system.
Trace amounts of selenium are found in cow milk, but there are also significant amounts in goat milk. This somewhat rare mineral is a key component in immune system functionality, making us better able to protect ourselves from illness and fend off infections.
Goat milk is a very rich source of protein, which is an essential part of growth and development, as proteins are the building blocks of cells, tissue, muscle, and bone. By ensuring a steady stream of protein, we protect our metabolic processes and stimulate growth and overall good health.
Although goat milk has more fatty acids than cow milk, it actually has less ‘bad’ fats, meaning that it can help people who want to lose weight, without compromising their nutritional needs.
While the prevalence of cow milk is not likely to fade in the near future, it is important to understand that there are other options out there if you’re interested in increasing your overall health.
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