What is Colostrum?
Life’s perfect first food, colostrum is the pre-milk fluid produced by all female mammals prior to giving birth. Naturally rich in immune and growth factors, colostrum helps insure the health of the newborn. Animals of all ages can benefit from taking colostrum because it has applications for every stage of life and it’s never too late to start receiving the benefits of life’s first food. Research has proven that the active ingredients present in bovine colostrum can aid immune defenses and support growth and repair in all mammals.
Colostrum and its components have been used for many years to treat a variety of diseases and health concerns. Historically, bovine colostrum has played a significant role in natural healing. In India, ayurvedic physicians have prescribed it for thousands of years and still do to this day. In western medicine, bovine colostrum was used extensively for immune purposes prior to the invention of antibiotics and sulfa drugs.
Why should I use bovine colostrum for my pet?
Many of the biologically active molecules of the immune and growth factors in cow’s colostrum are not species specific and can work in humans and lower mammals.
Why would an adult need colostrum?
Research has shown that, as pets age, their bodies gradually produce less of the immune and growth factors that help their bodies fight off disease, promote energy and vitality, and heal damaged body tissue. With the loss of these vital components, they age and die. Colostrum contains a variety of naturally occurring substances that have demonstrated the ability to kill bacteria and viral invaders, stimulate tissue repair (particularly the bowel lining), stimulate fat utilization for fuel and optimize cellular reproduction. Colostrum is the only natural source on the planet that can provide this marvelous combination of molecules.
How safe is colostrum?
Colostrum is a food and can be consumed by most pets without any side effects. Colostrum has no known drug interactions. Colostrum is not recommended for pets that are lactose (milk sugar) intolerant. There is no known toxicity level with colostrum.
I don’t want to take colostrum from the calves. Do they get enough?
The first milking must be reserved for the calf! Unlike humans, calves receive all of their immune factors from their mother’s colostrum and without this vital fluid most calves will die. However, the cow will produce approximately 20 litres of colostrum, while the calf can only ingest approximately 2 – 4 litres. The rest is often discarded.
What are the molecules that are in colostrum that can benefit pets?
Metabolic factors – colostrum contains high levels of numerous growth and cell differentiating factors. Many studies have shown that these factors are capable of accelerating healing, balancing blood glucose levels, reducing insulin need, and increasing muscle and bone growth while metabolizing fat.
Insulin-like growth factor – shown to be an important pathway by which growth hormone exerts its metabolic and growth promoting effects. It may be beneficial in combating the metabolic effects of aging.
Epidermal growth factor – promotes epithelial cell growth and differentiation, immunological and antimicrobial factors – immunoglobulins, lactoferrin, and lysosymes are the best understood beneficial agents present in colostrum. These and other antimicrobial agents present in colostrum work in concert to enhance defenses against microbial attacks of the gastrointestinal tract, thus helping to combat infections.
Nutritional factors – colostrum is designed to be a perfect source of nutrition and energy for the newborn, and consequently it contains three times as many minerals and five times as much protein as whole milk. Colostrum is also higher in energy and in important vitamins (such as vitamins a, b12, riboflavin, folic acid, and choline) than milk. In addition, colostrum is a major source of high levels of vitamin e and selenium, which are known to confer beneficial anti-oxidant effects.
Other important factors
Alpha-lactalbumin acts as a co-enzyme in the synthesis of l actose and increases the activity of the immune system. Trypsin inhibitor aids in digestion.