The A2 advantage
Milk is an excellent source of Protein, along with other essential nutrients such as Fat, Carbohydrates, Calcium, Vitamin A, etc. There are two main variants of Protein that are found in milk, namely A1 Beta Casein Protein (A1 Protein) and A2 Beta Casein Protein (A2 Protein). All mammals produce the A2 Protein. However, over the past few centuries, experimental cross breeding and forced displacement of native breeds has resulted in genetic mutations in many cow breeds across the world. This is one of the main reasons that some cow breeds produce the A1 Beta Casein Protein, instead of the A2 Protein (produced naturally by all mammals).
Milk contains approximately 3.5% protein of which 80% are casein proteins and 20% whey proteins. Caseins have been classified as Alpha/Beta/Kapa-Caseins. Whey contains β-lactoglobulin, α-lactalbumin and several minor proteins.
Amino acids play a very important role in our health.Proteins in milk are converted into peptides, which later take the form of amino acids. The amino acid released by A1 protein is called histidine, while the amino acid released by A2 protein is called proline.
BCM-7 is a peptide that when released in our body can lead to indigestion and also many modern day diseases. It is for this reason that A2 Milk has been recommended by health care professionals to be a healthier milk option.
Beta-Casomorphin-7 (BCM-7) is an opioid peptide that is found in both A1 & A2 protein milk. The Proline amino acid formed by A2 milk has a natural property to block this BCM-7 from going into our body. The Histidine amino acid formed by A1 milk, on the other had does not block this BCM-7, which subsequently enters our body and later dissolves in the blood.
The Milk Revolution
Cow breeds all over the world are categorized into two main types - Bos Taurus (having flat back) and Bos Indicus (having a humped back). The Bos Taurus breeds, which include all exotic breeds of British and European cattle like Jerseys, Holsteins, Angus, etc., primarily produce A1 protein milk and have higher yields. The Bos Indicus breeds like Gir, Ongole, Tharparkar, etc. are native to tropical countries, such as India and Africa and produce 100% A2 protein milk with slightly lower yields.
Around 1970 the National Dairy Development Board introduced Operation Flood in India to address the milk demands of the rapidly growing Indian population. As part of this initiative, farmers in India were encouraged to convert their herds to ‘exotic breeds’ such as Jerseys, Holsteins, and Guernseys, as these breeds offered higher milk yields in comparison to the native Indian (or Desi) breeds.
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