Mercola advocates raw milk, discusses A1 A2 beta casein in connection with autism, diabetes, heart disease, etc.



Readers have drawn my attention to the fact that Mercola is quoting the Bovine as a source for his recent story on A1 and A2 milk. Mercola gets most of the idea about how A1 milk is implicated in increased incidence of diseases such as diabetes and autism, and A2 is not. A2 is typically associated with older breeds such as the Guernsey, Asian and African breeds, as well as goats and sheep. Most Holsteins are primarily A1. And of course, the Holstein is by far the most popular breed in North America. 

How now, brown cow? Holstein (left) is typically A1, while Guernsey (right) is typically A2. Seemingly minor mutations of the beta-casein molecule translate into significant effects on human health.

However Mercola does miss one key point, which is that even Holsteins can be bred to be A2, although it typically takes 10 years of concerted effort to convert a herd to A2 by selective breeding. And of course that’s possible only if you know the A1 A2 status of the bulls you’re breeding with — information that’s commonly made available in New Zealand but, to my knowledge, not in many other places.

Still, it’s important that Mercola is taking an interest in the A1 A2 issue and drawing people’s attention to Keith Woodford’s book “Devil in the Milk”. Here’s a bit of what he says in his report:

“As many of you know, I do not recommend drinking pasteurized milk of any kind because the pasteurization process, which entails heating the milk to a temperature of 145 degrees to 150 degrees F and keeping it there for at least half an hour, completely changes the structure of the milk proteins into something far less than healthy.

Pasteurized cow’s milk is the number one allergic food in the United States. It has been associated with a number of symptoms and illnesses including:

§  Diarrhea, cramps, bloating and gas

§  Osteoporosis

§  Arthritis

§  Heart disease

§  Cancer

§  Recurrent ear infections and colic in infants and children

§  Type 1 diabetes

§  Rheumatoid arthritis

§  Infertility

§  Leukemia

§  Autism

The healthy alternative to pasteurized milk is raw milk, which is an outstanding source of nutrients including beneficial bacteria such as lactobacillus acidolphilus, vitamins and enzymes, and it is, in my estimation, one of the finest sources of calcium available.

Raw milk is generally not associated with any of the above health problems, and even people who have been allergic to pasteurized milk for many years can typically tolerate and even thrive on raw milk.

Yet, there are those people who still have trouble drinking raw milk, and like Dr. Thomas Cowan, I have wondered if there could be a missing piece to the puzzle.

That piece, it turns out, may very well be related to the type of cow your milk comes from.

A1 Vs. A2 Cows: What’s the Difference?

The type of proteins in milk, and the proportion of various proteins, varies depending on the breed of cow and the type of animal (sheep, goat, cow, etc.).

One of the major proteins in cow’s milk is casein, the predominant variety of which is called beta-casein. In older breeds of cows, such as Jersey, Asian and African cows (called A2 cows), the beta-casein contains an amino acid called proline.

In newer breeds of cows like Holstein (A1 cows), however, the proline has mutated into an amino acid called histidine.

This is important because beta-casein also contains an amino acid called BCM-7, which is a powerful opiate linked to negative health effects. Well, the proline that exists in A2 cows has a strong bond to BCM-7, which helps keep it out of the cows’ milk. The histidine in the newer A1 cows, however, has a weak hold on BCM-7, which allows it to get into the milk, and also into the people who drink the milk.

So the theory goes that by drinking milk from A1 cows, which are the predominant cows used for dairy products in the United States, you’re exposed to BCM-7, which has been linked to:

§  Neurological impairment, including autistic and schizophrenic changes

§  Type 1 diabetes

§  An impaired immune response

§  Autoimmune disease

§  Heart disease…”

Read the whole story here on Mercola (may require free signup). 

 See previous Bovine stories on the A1 A2 question:

Dairy Science as if people mattered

Insights on Pasteurization Effects from “Devil in the Milk”

Dr. Thomas Cowan on the A1 A2 factor

A1 Beta Casein implicated in Autism and Schizophrenia


A2 Vs. A1 Milk – Here Is What Big Dairy Doesn’t Want You To Know About Milk

Hello fellow milk drinkers. As many know who have read my articles or visited my sites, I am a big believer in raw milk. But there is some information you should know no matter what kind of milk you drink, whether it is raw or pasteurized milk. There is something Big Dairy is not telling you and probably never will. You’ll see why. So what is this something? It is A2 milk versus A1 milk.

You are most likely scratching your head right about now wondering what I am babbling about. But please, read on. This is important and you will not hear much (if anything–ever) about it if you don’t take it upon yourself to look for the information yourself.

Okay, I don’t want to bore you or start spouting off a bunch of scientific jargon, but there are different proteins found in milk. One of the proteins is called casein, and one of those is the beta casein. The major beta casein types are A1 and A2.

Still with me? All right, A2 is the good protein. You’ll find it in most of the old-fashioned cows like Guernsey, Brown Swiss, and Jersey. Guernseys are almost predominantly A2, followed by a high percentage of Brown Swiss, followed by Jersey, Ayrshire, and Milking Shorthorn. Then you have, lagging far far behind, the most popular cow in America, the Holstein, which is predominantly A1. This is the black and white dairy cow you see in all the ads.

You can pretty much assume Guernsey milk is A2, but the rest you would need to have a test run. Currently New Zealand is holding a patent on this and it makes it difficult to test in the United States (but not impossible, and I am having my cow tested right now).

The thing about this A2 and A1 is that the A1 is a mutated protein. It should all be A2 but people have “messed with” some breeds of cows too much and caused the A1 milk.

Now, here is why you will not hear about this from any of your local big commercial dairies. Most of these dairies have Holsteins. So most of the milk in the grocery stores is of the A1 variety.

So why is this bad, or is it? Well here’s the thing. Evidence has emerged showing an association between A1 beta casein in milk to increased risk of heart disease and diabetes, and is also associated with neurologic disorders such as autism and schizophrenia. And that may only be the tip of the iceberg

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