Comparison of nutritional value of different ruminant milks in human nutrition
- Assunta Arrichiello
- Giuseppe Auriemma
- Fiorella Sarubbi
Affiliations: Institute for Animal Production System in the Mediterranean Environment (ISPAAM), National Research Council (CNR) of Italy, Portici, I-80055, Italy
- Published online on: June 21, 2022 https://doi.org/10.3892/ijfn.2022.28
Copyright: © Arrichiello
et al. This is an open access article distributed under the
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Commons Attribution License.
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The present study was conducted on milk samples from 30 Italian Mediterranean buffaloes, and as many goats, sheep and cattle. Milk samples were subjected to chemical‑nutritional analysis and compared with commercially available milk samples. In the experiments, the management conditions could have influenced this parameter, determining the observed values. The higher fat content in sheep's milk differed significantly from that in the milk of the other animals analyzed. A higher lactose content was found in the milk of buffaloes and sheep, than in cows and goats. The highest cholesterol content was observed in cow and buffalo milk. These differences were statistically significant. To avoid excessive cholesterol intake, it is necessary to pay attention to both the quantity and quality of fats contained in food, bearing in mind that the introduction of large quantities of dairy products in the diet can cause a significant intake in cholesterol levels. Furthermore, when selecting the type of milk to be consumed, it is necessary to consider that the amount of total cholesterol is dependent on both the animal of origin and on the integrity of the lipid fraction. To complete the study, a chemical‑nutritional analysis of milk samples normally marketed, both of vegetable and animal origin, was also included. Observing the results, some differences appear evident in the chemical‑nutritional composition of goat and cow milk compared to the raw milk analyzed. In particular, goat's milk has a higher percentage of lipids. However, the differences observed herein were not significant and could be explained by the manufacturing process the samples were subjected to from the stable to the packaging industry. From the results obtained in the present study in the compositional analyses performed, and as also obtained from previous studies, it was found that sheep and goat milk, in particular, may be a valid substitute for cow's milk.