Holy Cow! What is A2 milk and why it makes a difference
If you’re a mammal, you’ve most probably had milk (Okay, that’s putting it way too broadly). But honestly, barring some people, milk forms a significant part of every breakfast (Especially for people having cereal) or every diet. And it actually is no surprise, as it has protein, vitamins, carbohydrates and basically everything that the body needs for daily nutrition and sustenance.
Varieties in milk
Apart from the product differentiation of full cream, skimmed, toned etc., there is a more basic difference in milk varieties, usually due to their constituents. There are mostly 2 such varieties, viz. A1 and A2.
How they are different
Milk contains protein, and one of the three major casein proteins present in milk is beta-casein (The one which makes all the difference). A1 milk contains A1 beta-casein and A2 contains A2 beta-casein protein. A1 and A2 are proteins that differ in structure by one amino acid.
Indian cows and others
Indian cows (Gir, Sahiwal etc.) come from the Bos indicus family, while most of others (Jersey, Holstein etc) come from the Bos taurus family. Indian cows have a dewlap and a hump that are their most prominent distinguishing features. Jerseys / Holsteins have none of these.
Ever wondered why the cow has been worshipped and revered in India since the ancient times? This tradition unfortunately, has been the butt of some jokes; but it has solid basis in science.
One point to note is that according to tradition, it is only the Indian indigenous breeds of cow (the ones with hump and dewlap) that have been considered holy, and none other. Desi (Indian) Cow milk also shares the most compatibility with human mother’s milk; hence desi cows are considered mother-like by Indians.
Only Indian cows give pure A2 milk (which is the only difference that has been researched) which is no less than a treasure of nutrition. Their hump has the Surya-Ketu Nadi (according to yoga, nadis are channels in the etheric body), which absorbs energy from the sun, producing golden salts in their blood as well as milk (this is why cow ghee is golden in color, cow milk has a yellowish tinge).
One could write a whole book on Indian cows, their temperament (which makes their milk much better) their by-products products and their relation with ayurveda and yoga, but I shall stick to the topic here, which is A2 milk.
So, why A2 milk? (And why not A1)
A1 protein produces beta-casomorphin-7 (BCM-7), which is apparently the one causing all the problem (Or rather the only one which is known to), as it is linked with multiple digestive disorders and gastrointestinal problems. Studies have also linked the consumption of A1 milk to autism. On the contrary, A2 milk is much easier to digest and causes no such problems, but rather is packed with nutrients and medicinal properties.
The BCM7 peptide that comes from A1 protein cannot be broken down by the body. This exogenous opioid is the culprit behind many diseases, as it does not occur naturally within the human body and interacts with human digestive system, internal organs and brain system. A1 milk also results in an overall increase in LDL or bad cholesterol, which is the reason behind most cardiovascular ailments. There have been few clinical studies on how A1 milk harmfully affects the body.
A2 milk is the best for kids and toddlers as it is easy to digest, and packed with all essential nutrients that kids need. I have seen kids having packed milk and I have seen kids having pure Indian cow’s milk (since quite early in their life) and the contrast in their health and activity is huge.
A1 milk’s popularity put people’s health on a downward spiral
In 1970, India launched one of the world’s biggest dairy development program, Operation Flood. On a high level, it involved promoting new cow breeds (mostly cross-bred with foreign cows) that gave more yield, thereby rapidly improving the milk production, making India the largest producer of milk. In the process India lost a lot of its indigenous breeds as they were cross bred with Holstein and Jersey; hence India also lost a big chunk of A2 milk sources. Most of the milk which is currently available in India is A1.
It is not surprising that in the last few decades, India has become the Heart Disease and Diabetes capital of the world. I’d like to add that people have also become easily irritable (that’s another social problem). This could also be attributed to lifestyle changes, but milk (an essential part of every Indian’s daily diet) definitely has a role to play. There should be more and deeper studies into this subject.
Brazil’s economy got a boost; thanks to Indian cows
Brazil has bred Indian indigenous cows for many decades and they now have a sizeable cow population (about 4 million, almost all of them from Indian breeds). Today it is one of the top 5 milk producers in the world, making the Indian cow a real money spinner for Brazil.
Jersey and HF breeds of cow
The main reason behind many people (especially in India) breeding Holsteins and Jerseys is that they have a better milk yield. All that yield comes at a high cost, and people are realizing it only now, and very slowly. That is why the irony; desi cow A2 milk, firstly is available in limited places in India, and secondly is priced higher.
The only way to make A2 milk mainstream is awareness. Business investment will automatically follow.
People should realize that A2 milk is something India already had, and chose to throw away for something abundant but inferior. In the long term, A2 milk should be commonly available.
Thousands of people have experienced dramatic improvements in their health just by consuming Indian cow’s A2 milk. The science is solid; most chronic, lifestyle-related diseases plaguing the urban populace today can be tackled effectively by changing one single part of their nutrition. A2 milk is truly the elixir of life.
P.S.: I usually do not ask this, but would like to say it for this particular article. If it has answered your questions or added to your knowledge, I request you to please share this article as much as possible to spread awareness about A2 milk and Indian cows.