Colostrum: Liquid Gold, Not Just for Babies
By Sarah Axtell, ND • June 21, 2017
Colostrum is not only baby’s first food but it is also considered a super-food for children and adults, especially those with a leaky gut. Colostrum, often termed “liquid gold,” is the secretion that mammals produce just prior to birth and right after birth to provide a nutrient-rich, immune-supportive food for baby. Colostrum contains antibodies to protect the newborn against disease AND to heal their inherently leaky gut. Babies’ guts are leaky by design to allow immunoglobulins to pass easily into the bloodstream. But after 72 hours of birth, it is time to seal the leaky gut and this is where colostrum comes in.
Beyond infancy, the holes in the gut can re-open and cause intestinal permeability, or leaky gut, in children and adults. A Leaky gut can lead to allergies, autoimmune conditions and chronic disease.
We can apply what we know regarding colostrum’s role to seal newborn’s guts to to heal leaky guts’ of children and adults. Bovine colostrum is an ideal supplement to heal the gut. Because cows receive all of their immunity from their mothers’ colostrum (they are not born with immunity to airborne, disease-causing organisms), bovine colostrum must contain a large amount of immunity. In fact, it contains 30-40% more immune and growth factors than colostrum. Also, the type of growth and immune factors in bovine colostrum are nearly bioidentical to those in human colostrum.
Colostrum can not only be taken therapeutically to heal a leaky gut, but it can also be taken as a preventative measure to protect your gut when taking NSAIDs, such as aspirin and ibuprofen. We know NSAIDs cause gastrointestinal injury. This study demonstrated colostrum’s ability to reduce intestinal permeability caused by NSAIDs and provides reasonable evidence to supplement with colostrum to protect your gut while popping your ibuprofen for your arthritis.
Can I still take colostrum if I am allergic or sensitive to dairy?
Yes! I find most of my patients with dairy sensitivities and/or allergies or lactose intolerance can tolerate colostrum. In fact, it can be really beneficial in cases of multiple food sensitivities, including dairy, to heal and seal the leaky gut and therefore desensitize your immune response to foods.
When supplementing with colostrum, look for colostrum from hormone-, pesticide-, and antibiotic-free cows. We carry Pure Encapsulations Colostrum at Lakeside Natural Medicine. Discuss with your ND or health care provider whether or not this would be a good supplement for you and the appropriate dosage.
Editor’s Note: The information in this article is intended for your educational use only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health practitioners with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition and before undertaking any diet, supplement, fitness, or other health program.