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Camel Milk and Gut Health - What the Studies Say

Camel Milk and Gut Health - What the Studies Say

Millions of people in the world struggle with gut problems such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), or lactose intolerance. Searches for natural ways to manage symptoms and improve gut health often lead people to look to adding camel milk to their diet. So why is this?

 

Pre- and Pro-biotic Bacteria

Studies have suggested that camel milk may have benefit for the gut biome due to its unique composition and properties. Camel Milk contains pre- and pro-biotic bacteria that can survive the acidic environment of the stomach and reach the intestine, where they can promote the growth of beneficial bacteria and inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria. This can help to restore balance to the gut microbiome and reduce inflammation, which are key factors in the development and progression of gut-related disorders.

 

  • A study by Sharma et al, published in the Journal of Food and Nutrition Research, looked at the antibacterial and antioxidant activities of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) isolated from Camel Milk, noting that the presence and activity of LAB in Camel Milk would suggest benefits for gut health.

 

  • He et al, published in the Journal of Dairy Science, looking at the effect of Camel Milk lactoferrin on inflammation and gut microbiota in the context of inflammatory bowel diseases in mice. They found that the Camel Milk lactoferrin did reduce inflammation and modulated gut microbiota.

 

  • A study by Arab et al was published in the Journal of Food and Chemical Toxicology and found therapeutic effects of Camel Milk on colitis, focussing on the downregulation of inflammatory cytokines and oxidative stress.

 

Lactose

Camel Milk also has a lower lactose content than bovine milk, and notably contains a different type of lactose. While cow’s milk contains mainly lactose in the form of beta-D-galactose-1,4-glucose, Camel Milk contains a different type called alpha-D-galactose-1,4-glucose. This was identified in a study from El-Agamy (2007) characterising the components of Camel Milk. The difference in the lactose type is thought to contribute to the hypoallergenic properties of Camel Milk and this was discussed by Alavi et al (2017), when they looked at the nutraceutical properties of camel milk. It has been found that substituting Camel Milk into the diet can reduce symptoms of lactose intolerance in sensitive individuals (Agrawal, 2015; Boughellout, 2009).

 

Unique Proteins

The unique proteins in Camel Milk such as immunoglobulins, lactoferrin, and lysozyme – have antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and immune-modulatory properties, which can contribute to the maintenance of a healthy gut biome. A review study by Mohammadabadi (2020) published in the Journal of Agricultural Sciences, concluded that the bioactive components in Camel Milk reduced inflammation in the gut and improved gut health.

 

Digestibility and Absorption

Another indicator for gut health is overall digestibility and absorption. In a 2015 study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition by Agrawal et al. found that Camel Milk was more easily digestible than bovine milk and could be a potential therapeutic food for people suffering from malabsorption disorders.

 

While more research is needed to fully understand the specific mechanisms through which Camel Milk provides benefits to gut health, and to determine the optimum levels of consumption. If you’re interested in trying Camel Milk, it is a nutritious and natural way to support your gut health and manage your gut-related symptoms.

 

At Summer Land Camels, we are committed to continually expanding our knowledge base and sharing this with scholars from various universities in Australia. Through ongoing research efforts, we aim to build a comprehensive resource on the potential benefits of camel milk to human health.

 

We welcome and value feedback from our customers and would encourage anyone who has insights or experiences with our products to share them with us. Your feedback may be used to inform and shape our ongoing research efforts, helping us to better understand the benefits of Camel Milk.

 

 

References and Further Reading

 

Agrawal, R.P., Jain, S., Shah, S., Chopra, A., Agarwal, V., & Mathur, G. (2015). Effect of camel milk on glycemic control and insulin requirement in patients with type 1 diabetes: 2-years randomized controlled trial. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 69(3), 339-342.

 

Alavi, F., Salami, M., Emam-Djomeh, Z., & Moosavi-Movahedi, A. A. (2017). Nutraceutical properties of camel milk. In Nutrients in dairy and their implications on health and disease (pp. 309-328). Academic Press.

 

Arab, H. H., Salama, S. A., Eid, A. H., Omar, H. A., & Arafa, E. A. (2014). Camel's milk ameliorates TNBS-induced colitis in rats via downregulation of inflammatory cytokines and oxidative stress. Food and Chemical Toxicology, 115, 49-58.

 

Boughellout, H., Choiset, Y., Rabesona, H., Chobert, J. M., Haertle, T., & Zidoune, M. N. (2016). Camel's milk: A new source of proteins for children with cow's milk allergy? In Revue française d'allergologie (2009) (Vol. 56, Issue 4, pp. 344–348). Elsevier.

 

El-Agamy, E.I. (2007) 'The challenge of cow milk protein allergy', Small Ruminant Research, 68(1), pp. 64-72.

 

He, J., Guo, K., Chen, Q., & Wang, Y. (2022). Camel milk modulates the gut microbiota and has anti-inflammatory effects in a mouse model of colitis. Journal of Dairy Science, 105(1), 195-205.

 

Mohammadabadi, T. (2020). Camel milk as an amazing remedy for health complications: a review. Basrah Journal of Agricultural Sciences, 33(2), 99-114.

 

Sharma, A., Lavania, M., Singh, R., & Lal, B. (2021). Identification and probiotic potential of lactic acid bacteria from camel milk. Saudi Journal of Biological Sciences, 28(9), 5162-5169.

 

Photo by Katemangostar on Freepik

 

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