Many babies suffer with terrible reflux and are constantly ill. Many Mums that breastfeed their babies with reflux find they have to give up themselves on dairy to help ease baby’s suffering, which can be extremely hard particularly when it means no more milky frothy coffees!!

Benefits of drinking milk

Milk is crammed with vitamins B and C and it also contains iodine, iron, magnesium, potassium and calcium so much goodness!! Did you know to get the same nutrients that you get from one single glass of milk, you would have to eat 41 bananas, 89 tomatoes, 2 pineapples and 9 mushrooms; wow!
A BBC documentary ‘Britain’s favourite supermarket foods’ highlighted some of milks impressive nutritional benefits including some lesser-known ones. But despite all of these amazing benefits in drinking milk not everyone can enjoy the white stuff and have to avoid it as it has a negative impact on their digestion.

Problems experienced in drinking milk

Many people after drinking milk experience bloating and indigestion, also not to mention the negative impact that some people feel on their skin condition and mucus issues. It was highlighted that these problems could be a result of intolerance to A1 protein found in most milk sold in the UK.

What is a2 Milk?

A friend recently sent me a link to the a2 Milk company which I found very interesting. Apparently they carefully select cows that produce only the A2 protein, that all mammals naturally produce, and therefore for consumers, it won’t have the negative side effects that some people, toddlers and children experience after drinking milk.

While dairy milk is still heavily dominating the UK milk market, it’s consumption is around 8% lower than it was 10 years ago and milk alternatives such as almond, soya and rice milk are gaining ground. Our bodies apparently absorb nutrients from natural dairy products much better than they do from milk alternatives.

A2 MilkSo could a2 Milk help?

a2 Milk company says one of the reasons that people turn to alternative plant based milks is because they struggle to digest regular cows’ milk and they therefore assume that they must be lactose intolerant.

But this may not always be the case; a lot of people are actually just intolerant to the A1 protein found in most cows’ milk sold in the UK and symptoms are very similar to those of lactose intolerance. a2 Milk Company state they carefully select cows to ensure that they only produce the A2 protein, so many people are able to drink it without uncomfortable side effects.

Breastfeeding and milk consumption

We are told “breast is best” as it provides anti-bodies passed down from Mum to her baby, that help protect babies against cold, tummy bugs, chest infections and ear infections. But there is another less publicised benefit of breast milk a2 Milk Company say, the beta casein protein in human breast milk is of the A2 type by virtue of its structure and digestion, and does not contain the A1 form of this protein found in cows’ milk.

All mammals produce only the A2 type of beta casein in their milk, except for western dairy cattle milk that contains an additional form termed A1. The A1 protein arose during domestication and became prevalent throughout cow herds in Europe. Because it’s structurally different, the A1 type of protein digests differently from the A2 protein, producing fragments that can interfere with the digestion function and thus be harsher on the tummy leading to uncomfortable idea effects.

cowBaby formula is made from cows’ milk, so while it provides baby with the nutrients it needs, the beta casein protein contained is not purely the A2 type in the same way that human breast milk is.

In Australia, things are developing fast, as breast-feeding is not always possible. The a2 Milk Company have developed a baby formula that only contains the A2 type of beta casein protein and no A1.

This formula is proving popular in Australia and there is talk that they are looking to introduce it into the UK. This will give non-breast feeding mums the option to provide their baby with formula milk that only contains the A2 protein and no A1. This may help babies that suffer with dairy intolerances. So if you are struggling to digest milk, don’t just assume that your lactose intolerant without properly being diagnosed by an expert.

Maybe a2 Milk can help?

I am definitely going to give it a try and see it helps with my regular bloating and the lethargic feeling I experience at times after eating and drinking my favourite milky coffees and cereals.

I am also interested to see if it helps my eldest son as he suffers with sinus issues. He is a big milk drinker and I have often wondered if he was dairy intolerant, but maybe it is to do with the A1 protein?

For further information on a2 Milk Company visit their website: www.a2milk.co.uk 

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