Years ago I remember reading Sally Fallon’s comment in Nourishing Traditions regarding drinking goats milk on a regular basis. She spoke of the lack of folic acid (also known as folate) and vitamin B12 contained in goats milk compaired to cows milk. While reading that statement I remember thinking… “what about sheep’s milk?”
Well Fallon was correct. Goat’s milk contains only 2.4 mcg of folate per 1 cup of milk whereas cow’s milk contains 12.2 mcg of folate per 1 cup of milk. But get this, sheep’s milk contains 17.2 mcg of folate per 1 cup of milk! As for the vitamin B12, compare the results for 1 cup on milk: Goat’s milk: .2 mcg, Cows milk: 1.1 mcg, Sheep’s milk: 1.7 mcg.
In case you are curious folate is necessary for forming new cells, especially during rapid cell growth which takes place in infancy and in utero. It plays an essential role synthesizing DNA and cell division. While pregnant, if a woman does not have enough folate in her body, neural tube birth defects and low birth weight in the baby are a common result. Lake of folate causes anemia since folate also helps in producing red blood cells.
Vitamin B12 is essential for normal brain and nervous system function. It also promotes blood production. B12 is needed for the metabolism of every cell in the body. It works in correlation with Folate/Folic Acid for DNA synthesis and overall growth. Folic acid and Vit. B12 need to be consumed together for adequate absorption.
Please note: The following data results are taken from pasteurized milk. Results from raw milk will compare differently. See this chart for insight: Which do you Choose?
For related posts see: Drinking Sheep vs. Goat Milk