A2/A2 cows. Anyone ever heard of this? WWYD? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 14 Old 12-06-2010, 12:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I've just recently come across any info on this, and I'm wondering if anyone here has any further info. Please help me puzzle this out with your opinions?

 

I have dairy allergic children. Their symptoms are really quite mild, occasionally a runny nose, hyperactivity/mood, etc. That's about it. I actually thought that they were "growing out of it" by the time they hit 2 yrs old, until the more subtle signs were pointed out to me by our allergist.

 

I've recently been reading more and more about the important nutritive benefits of raw milk/raw butter. Obviously you can survive quite well without it, since we have been. And I've been on the fence for years about whether or not milk is even good for anyone at all (seems evolutionarily incorrect and I tend in that direction).

 

However, I've read sheep milk is as close to human milk as most animals get, so it rarely causes trouble for those dairy allergic. Now I've met a local sheep farmer that MAY begin a sheep share program with me. However, she also has a cow that is genetically A2/A2. Now, the only actual info I have on this is from her, but apparently cows with the A2 gene, as opposed to A1 as most modern cows are, carry milk very like a sheep's. It's very easily digestible as the proteins are more easily digestible (smaller or something, I think. I was distracted when she was explaining it). She says that most modern cows were modified over the past 100 years or so, to become high producers with lower fat content, and the A1 genes are better for that. So the A2, with higher fat (yay butter!) and more easily digested proteins, has been largely bred out of our food system.

 

Now, all of this does make sense to me. And she's definitely not the type to just push a share on us (she's got a waiting list, and I believe it) just to make a sale. Has anyone else heard this about the genes of the cow?

 

So I'm inclined to trying it. She's VERY interested in how the milk will do with allergic kids and is giving us some of the raw milk in order to try it and report back. If the kids did well I would feel good about buying a share in her cow share program and using the raw milk for butter/ghee and possibly more.

 

My worry is that

1. I won't recognize that the milk is hurting the kids. Some of these things can cause inflamatory reactions at a low level and long-term damage this way, right? I first began exploring it for their dental health, but if they are reacting it could do more harm than good. I know pitifuly little about allergy, like most HCP...

2. A2/A2 means nothing and now I've bought a cow share and I'm stuck in a monthly obligation (you can get out, but it's not easy).

3. I pass on the cow share and she decides to never do a sheep share program because I'm not constantly bugging her about it. :)

 

Thank you for any info.

ETA: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A2_milk


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#2 of 14 Old 12-06-2010, 01:09 PM
 
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Pat (WuWei) has some information on this I think. I'm sure she'll chime in if she's around.

Our allergist told us that goat and sheep milk are both very similar proteins to cow's milk, and that the only milk with a significantly different protein structure is mare milk. shrug.gif

Are you dealing with "true" (IgE) allergies? What you could do is take some of the A2 milk to your allergist and ask them to do a scratch test with it. I would definitely do that before putting my money into a cow share that you might not be able to use.

Let us know how it goes!

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#3 of 14 Old 12-06-2010, 01:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by changingseasons View Post

Are you dealing with "true" (IgE) allergies?


See, I'm not sure I am. The child allergist did scratch tests on 2 of my kids, and a RAST test on my first and they all came back negative. However, we can CLEARLY point to UR and GI reactions when consuming milk (and about 14 other foods). You can ALWAYS tell when ds1 has had milk/icecream/yogurt. Today he was a little A$$! Totally obnoxious from the moment I woke up. I asked dh if he'd had the yogurt I made last night (first time I'd tried in a year) and sure enough he had. I;d hidden it in the basement fridge so they wouldn't get into it and he still did and I could tell before knowing...

 

So, I can never tell if it's "true" allergy, I just know I see something happen... So I'm not sure what's really going on inside their bodies...


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#4 of 14 Old 12-06-2010, 01:26 PM
 
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It sounds like your reactions are IgG, not IgE.

 

I'm a dairy farmer... no cows, just goats and sheep.

 

I too am especially interested in how raw milk does for our allergic kids, as my daughter is one of the many affected.

 

I have a large share program, and its really interesting to meet so many people with milk sensitivity and hear their stories.

 

What I hear over and over, is that 95% of my shareholders have never reacted to my dairy products like they do to cow milk.

 

And the few that react to my goat products, have no reactions to my sheep products.

 

FWIW.  No one has reacted to my sheep products.  I wouldn't buy a cow share.

 

Sheep milk is twice as nutrient dense as goat and cow products, and is safer.


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#5 of 14 Old 12-06-2010, 01:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by mtn.mama View Post

 

I'm a dairy farmer... no cows, just goats and sheep.

 



Can you tell me, are you able to make butter from sheep milk without a centrifuge, or is it pretty homogenized like goat milk?


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#6 of 14 Old 12-06-2010, 02:07 PM
 
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#7 of 14 Old 12-06-2010, 03:15 PM
 
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I've been meaning to check in to the A1/ A2 thing for ages as the guy at our health food shop was telling me about it a while ago cause we're off all dairy and he said he'd had his allergic kids on A2 but since I'm very unlikely to find an organic farmer offering shares in my area I haven't followed it up. We still BF so even if I could just make some butter or cheese with A2 milk..mmmm. He said the protein molecules of the two are digested differently. I was a bit frazzled the day he was going into it and not sure of his qualifications but would love if anyone has research links. DS seems to react to goats milk..our only symptoms is really disturbed sleep if he has milk and I can always tell if someone has slipped him something. irked.gif

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#8 of 14 Old 12-06-2010, 03:26 PM
 
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Yes, to make cream and thus butter you'll need a cream separator.  The milk will not separate enough on it's own until it's very sour.

 

Jellybeanmumma, have you checked at www.realmilk.com to look for local shares?  Talked to local farmers?

 

Here's another link about A1/A2 milk:  http://heal-thyself.ning.com/profiles/blogs/the-amazing-thing-is-that


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#9 of 14 Old 12-06-2010, 07:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtn.mama View Post

 

Here's another link about A1/A2 milk:  http://heal-thyself.ning.com/profiles/blogs/the-amazing-thing-is-that



I recognize the avatar pic from s poster on this forum. :)

"the main ones are A1 and A2 beta casein. The two types break down differently when digested with A1 casein producing a bioactive peptide, which is very similar to the digestion product of gluten."
 
So, does this suggest that if this works for my kids that they may have some gluten intolerance I've never noticed? My babies have reactions to oat, rice, corn, about every popular grain but wheat and barley, 2 that contain gluten... I am always thankful that wheat works, as I'm tired of how much money it costs me to sub ingredients and tapioca, etc are expensive (I can't learn to like quinoa. I swear I've tried and tried).

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#10 of 14 Old 12-07-2010, 09:44 AM
 
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I do suggest that if your babes react to all of the other grains that you take gluten off the menu.  I know it's not at easy task, but it could make all the difference for your long term health.  Sometimes our bodies don't get strong enough to react, until they enough of a break from the offender... then we can more clearly hear what our bodies are trying to tell us.  And if, after 3 months without gluten you still don't note any reactions- then you are one lucky woman.  You might even see REALLY positive things after just a couple weeks gluten free...


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#11 of 14 Old 12-31-2010, 05:40 AM - Thread Starter
 
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First of all, thank you for the wheat rec. I learned after you posted this that I HAD been reacting to wheat, but just never made the connection. Wheat-free for a week and I had no more diarrhea. It was amazing. Pumping wheat for a week and I had almost constant diarrhea. Amazing again.

 

Second, my kids didn't do well on the A2 milk. It seemed to cause the same reactions as store-bought milk. I had my husband feed it to them on random days before I got up. Nobody would tell me that had been a milk day, I could just most definitely tell. Dark circles and snotty/stuffy noses in the little guys and my oldest ds was just flat-out obnoxious! Pick, pick, picking at the siblings, arguing about everything, couldn't hold still or concentrate on anything to save his life.

 

So, we're going to try goat's milk after kidding in March/April. Wish us luck!


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#12 of 14 Old 12-31-2010, 10:44 AM
 
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Thanks so much for sharing what you learned. I'm really happy to be able to pass on some of the knowledge from my family's hard earned lessons. How exciting that you are finding the road to health!!! And good luck with goat milk... I have kids due on January 13th. We try to extend our kidding season as far as possible so that as many can have access to our products as possible. And if goat milk doesn't work for you (remember, sometimes it's whey that's the culprit, not the casein), then I highly recommend sheep milk if you can find it. Cheers!


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#13 of 14 Old 11-25-2012, 02:55 PM
 
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see this wonderful website for intolerances:  http://fedup.com.au/

You can find a lot about A2 milk there.  I would go for it!

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#14 of 14 Old 11-26-2012, 09:33 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gabbyraja View Post

 

My worry is that

1. I won't recognize that the milk is hurting the kids. Some of these things can cause inflamatory reactions at a low level and long-term damage this way, right? I first began exploring it for their dental health, but if they are reacting it could do more harm than good. I know pitifuly little about allergy, like most HCP...

2. A2/A2 means nothing and now I've bought a cow share and I'm stuck in a monthly obligation (you can get out, but it's not easy).

3. I pass on the cow share and she decides to never do a sheep share program because I'm not constantly bugging her about it. :)

 

 

These are my concerns as well, though it sounds like you are dealing with an intolerance.  With allergies, I am concerned with long-term inflammation with small amounts the allergen.  For intolerances, that might not be the case.  If it is lactose intolerance, you can sometimes consume dairy without trouble.  Lactose intolerance is more of a spectrum.  Some of us produce small amounts of the enzyme, but not enough for the typical North American diet.  That's why we can eat more yogurt and cultured products (bacteria consume much of the lactose, so we can eat more of it) or butter (mostly fat--less lactose).  Of course there are some people who get acute GI reactions to any dairy.  

 

That said (I hope I make my point succinctly) I would not buy a share before I knew what we are dealing with.  Besides that, I personally have more trouble with raw milk than with pasteurized.  I don't know how the process affects the milk (the heat does affect the proteins somewhat, but for an intolerance it is not the protein that is the trigger) or if it is a natural bacteria in the raw milk that affects me.  I've even tried taken tiny amounts every day, but had to abandon that before the week's end because of intense GI cramps.

Quote:
Originally Posted by changingseasons View Post

Pat (WuWei) has some information on this I think. I'm sure she'll chime in if she's around.
Our allergist told us that goat and sheep milk are both very similar proteins to cow's milk, and that the only milk with a significantly different protein structure is mare milk. shrug.gif
Are you dealing with "true" (IgE) allergies? What you could do is take some of the A2 milk to your allergist and ask them to do a scratch test with it. I would definitely do that before putting my money into a cow share that you might not be able to use.
Let us know how it goes!

I've heard this, too.  Maybe donkey milk as well?  Same taxonomical family.  Just wondering. 


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