Updated: Sep 24, 2020
When newborn babies breastfeed, they benefit from a substance called colostrum which is produced on days 2-4 after birth by the mother before her full milk production arrives. Colostrum contains growth factors and antibodies known as IgA and IgG. These antibodies support immune and cognitive developments and are essential for the overall health of a new-born baby. A new-born’s intestinal barrier is permeable and this leaves the child vulnerable to infection. Colostrum is responsible for reducing inflammation, reducing infection and helping with the growth and repair of the gut lining.
Before the introduction of antibiotics, a drug that may cause permeability in the gut, colostrum was being used as a source to fight viruses, bacteria, fungal and yeast infections. However, the growth of resistant bacteria, such as, MRSA and C-diff means that new ways to disrupt pathogenic bacteria are needing to be developed. Recent studies in animal and human models show a number of useful activities from bovine colostrum.
Colostrum activities include:
Increased phagocyte activity which are cells that engulf, breakdown and dispose of bacteria.
The production of pro-inflammatory cytokines which reduce inflammation caused by bacteria.
It inhibits bacteria from sticking to intestinal walls, therefore reducing the impact of bacterial infection.
It is protective against upper respiratory tract infections.
It may protect from helicobactor pylori the main cause of ulcers in the stomach.
Reduces gut permeability.
Boost immune system to a more youthful state.
Bovine colostrum is now available in supplement form and may be useful in gut re-balancing programmes that help to reduce digestive symptoms in those with gut issues. It is, however, important to consider where the source of colostrum is coming from. G&G Vitamins is a company is committed to producing supplements from sustainable, organic sources. Their Colostrum Plus supplement* if from European grass-fed cows on higher welfare organic farms, ensuring only the best quality. European colostrum is the only regulated colostrum. Calves only require a tiny amount of colostrum, around 4lbs, but the mother produces a large excess, and it is this excess that is used by G&G.
*You should check with a health professional before using supplements especially if you have a medical condition or are on medication.
For further information of G&G Colostrum, click the link below.
Marie Jarvis, Nutritionist / Nutritional Therapist (BANT)