Organic Milk Truly Is Healthier, Research Finds

Share This!

Organic milk sure costs more, but is it really any better for you? This recent study reveals the answer….

The debate surrounding the health benefits of organic vs. chemically (“conventionally”) farmed doesn’t just apply to produce. Milk, meat, and other animal products have also entered the fray – and if anything, these are even more important, as our consumption of them is so high, and the health risks of consuming factory-farmed animals are potentially much greater.

For those wondering if there truly is a benefit to your health in purchasing organic milk, look no further. In the first large-scale U.S. study comparing organic and “conventional” (factory-farmed) milk, researchers found that organic milk is higher in healthy fatty acids, such as the much-touted heart-healthy Omega-3s.

This study [by a Washington state research team] is the first large-scale, U.S.-wide comparison of organic and conventional milk, testing nearly 400 samples of organic and conventional milk over an 18-month period. Conventional milk had an average omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio of 5.8, more than twice that of organic milk’s ratio of 2.3. The researchers say the far healthier ratio of fatty acids in organic milk is brought about by a greater reliance on pasture and forage-based feeds on organic dairy farms.

A large body of research has shown that grass and legume forages promote cow health and improve the fatty acid profile in organic dairy products. Still, said WSU researcher Dr. Charles Benbrook, the study’s lead author, “We were surprised by the magnitude of the nutritional quality differences we documented in this study.”

…………………………………………………………..

The consumption of more omega-6 fatty acids than omega-3 fatty acids is a well-known risk factor for a variety of health problems, including cardiovascular disease, cancer, excessive inflammation, and autoimmune diseases. The higher the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3, the greater the associated health risk.

Western diets typically have a ratio of about 10-to-1 to 15-to-1, while a ratio of 2.3-to-1 is thought to maximize heart health….

[Researchers] found that almost 40 percent of the needed nine-point drop could be achieved by switching from three daily servings of conventional dairy products to 4.5 daily servings of mostly full-fat organic dairy products….

“Surprisingly simple food choices can lead to much better levels of the healthier fats we see in organic milk,” says Benbrook.

…………………………………………………………………..

Read more at ScienceDaily.com….

Source: Washington State University. “Researchers see added nutritional benefits in organic milk.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 December 2013.

Share This!