A2 milk – Lets go back to the original manuscript
Milk has been a staple food for humans for thousands of years. It is a rich source of nutrients, including calcium, vitamin D, and protein, that are essential for healthy growth and development.
However, for some people, consuming milk can cause digestive discomfort, including bloating, gas, and diarrhea. In recent years, a new type of milk known as A2 milk has emerged as a potential solution to these digestive issues. In this blog post, we will explore the origins of A2 milk, and why A2 baby formula milk is believed to be easier to digest.
The Origins of A2 Milk
To understand A2 milk, we need to start with the proteins in cow's milk. The two main proteins in cow's milk are whey and casein. Casein makes up about 80% of the protein in cow's milk, and it has two main types: A1 and A2. Cows that produce A2 milk only produce the A2 variant of the beta-casein protein, which is the original form of protein produced by cows before they were domesticated.
Over time, cows have been selectively bred to produce both A1 and A2 beta-casein protein, mostly to extract increased milk production per cow. This selective breeding led to the prevalence of A1 beta-casein protein in modern-day cow's milk.
The A1 beta-casein protein was first identified in the 1990s as a potential cause of digestive discomfort in some people who consume milk. Researchers discovered that A1 beta-casein protein is broken down in the gut into a peptide called beta-casomorphin-7 (BCM-7). BCM-7 has been shown to cause digestive discomfort in some people, including bloating, gas, and diarrhea.
In contrast, A2 beta-casein protein is not broken down into BCM-7, which is why it is believed to be easier to digest than A1 milk.
A2 milk is produced by cows that naturally produce only A2 beta-casein protein, or by cows that have been selectively bred to produce only A2 milk.
Why A2 Baby Formula Milk is Easier to Digest
A2 baby formula milk is believed to be easier to digest than normal formula milk for several reasons. First, A2 milk is less likely to cause digestive discomfort in infants who have difficulty digesting lactose, the natural sugar found in milk. Lactose intolerance occurs when the body is unable to produce enough lactase, the enzyme that breaks down lactose. The symptoms of lactose intolerance can include bloating, gas, and diarrhea.
A2 milk is lower in lactose than normal milk, which means that infants who are lactose intolerant may be able to tolerate A2 formula milk better than normal formula milk. Additionally, the A2 beta-casein protein in A2 milk is believed to be easier to digest than A1 beta-casein protein, which may also contribute to its improved digestibility.
Another potential benefit of A2 baby formula milk is that it may reduce the risk of developing certain health conditions later in life. Some research has suggested that A1 beta-casein protein may be associated with an increased risk of developing type 1 diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic health conditions.
A2 Milk-Based Formula Vs. Other Formula Options
Compared to traditional cow's milk formula, A2 formula is considered more easily digestible. This is because it is closer to human milk proteins, which only contain the A2 beta-casein protein. Traditional cow's milk formula, on the other hand, contains both A1 and A2 beta-casein proteins, which can be harder for some babies to digest.
A2 milk-based formula is an excellent option for babies who experience ongoing issues such as excess spit up, diarrhea, constipation, gas, and tummy pain with traditional cow's milk formula.
It is more easily digestible and is closer to human milk proteins than traditional cow's milk formula.
Despite the health benefits, big milk producers in the US have been reluctant to move away from A1 due to higher production costs and lower milk yields when producing A2 milk.
In Australia and New Zealand A2 milk has been readily available since the early 2000’s where A2 based formula accounts for over 50% market share and is also the dominant form of adult whole milk sales.