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Does Colostrum Boost The Immune System and Kill Yeast?

Updated 1/07/2021

Medically reviewed by Dr. Atmika Paudel, PhD - Written by Dan Jackowiak Nc, HHP and Dr. Vibhuti Rana, PhD


Dr. Atmika Paudel, PhD says... The information about colostrum, its effects on pathogens and possible safety issues, mentioned in the article below is medically correct.

Colostrum contains five types of immunoglobulins, namely IgA, IgD, IgE, IgG, and IgM. Bovine sources contain mostly IgG with small amounts of IgA, IgD, IgE, and IgM. Human sources typically contain 2% IgG content, while bovine sources can have from 8% to above 25% IgG content. These are protein molecules that are effective in fighting bacterial and viral infections, colds, flu, parasites, yeast infections, etc. Immunoglobulins are the energizing elements in colostrum that are also anti-inflammatory in nature.

Colostrum has been shown to contain antibodies specific to more than 19 specific disease causing pathogens including: Rotavirus, H. pylori, Cryptosporidium, Salmonella, Candida, Streptococcus, Staphylococcus and E. coli.(1)

1. Effects of Bovine Immunoglobulins on Immune Function, Allergy, and Infection. Front Nutr. 2018; 5: 52. 2018 Jun 22. doi: 10.3389/fnut.2018.00052.

colostrum

Proline-rich polypeptides help regulate the thymus gland and can stimulate a weakened immune system, as well as balance an overactive immune system, as in the case of many autoimmune diseases. This is significant because the stem cells in the bone marrow produce white blood cells that then migrate to the thymus gland to mature and be activated.

Colostrum contains lactoferrin, which is an iron-binding protein with antiviral, antibacterial, anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory properties.

Glycoproteins protect the immune system and the growth factors in colostrum from destruction by the digestive juices in the stomach and intestinal tract.

It contains lactalbumins that can be highly effective against numerous forms of cancer and viruses.

Medical studies have shown that the vital growth factors from bovine sources are practically identical to human sources in composition. Furthermore, it has been shown that growth factors stimulate normal growth, as well as help regenerate and accelerate the repair of aged or injured muscle, skin collagen, bone, cartilage, and nerve tissues. Growth factors also stimulate the body to burn fat for fuel instead of the body's own muscle tissue in times of fasting and build lean muscle mass. In addition, the growth factors can be used as an effective topical application for burns, injuries, and skin rejuvenation.

It helps regulate cytokines known as Interleukin 1 and 6, Interferon y, and Lymphokines, which are chemicals that are involved in the cell-to-cell communication of the immune system. It increases antiviral and anti-tumor activity and regulates the intensity of immune responses. Cytokines help alert our immunologic army when there is a threat of foreign invasion.

Colostrum has been found to raise IgA activity by 79% above normal in the mouth. Elevated IgA levels would be very helpful for any yeast infection that infects the mucous linings of the body. In this case, the mouth. (2)

2. The effect of bovine colostrum supplementation on salivary IgA in distance runners.Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2006 Feb;16(1):47-64.


The most potent colostrum product I have been able to find is Symbiotics® Wild Cherry Colostrum Plus®, which contains 1.2 mgs per tablet.

Colostrum Plus is also a good one and also contains Arabinogalactan, Olive leaf extract, beta 1,3 glucan and lactoferrin. All these ingredients are known to enhance immune function.

Colostrum is easily destroyed by the stomach acids when you take it around meals and this leaves you with absolutely no benefits from the supplement. Because of this, you should take a chewable but if you take the capsules with water, it’s suggested to space them away from meals. The suggested dose for Symbiotics® Colostrum Plus when treating yourself for yeast is 8 tablets a day for adults, and 4 to 6 a day for children. It is best to just let the tablet dissolve in the mouth if possible.


Dr. Vibhuti Rana, PhD says...

The above section has described the health benefits of colostrum in a very elaborate manner. If you go through scientific literature, you would find numerous studies which speak highly of the bovine colostrum, the first milk produced by a cow after delivering a calf; or any mammalian mother for her baby. Neonatal calves require and derive a great benefit from cow’s colostrum consumption withing the first few hours of their birth. It is mainly rich in the immunoglobulin G. However, many times, mother’s milk has poor levels of IgG and the calves are devoid of basic immunity. To enhance the passive immunity, colostrum supplements (>20% IgG per doze) have had a great role since recent times (1, 2).

In a similar fashion, colostrum supplements have been known to enhance immunity and immunity related functions in patients with weakened immunity. Bovine based colostrum supplements have been found to exert a great role in adults as well as children (3). According to a multi-center collaborative study from Canada, Turkey, and India, this yellowish, sticky, thick compound is an emerging nutraceutical which is rich is lactoferrin and IgG. The immunoglobins constituting the colostrum are capable of complex formation with bacteria and yeast infecting agents and exerts an antimicrobial activity in the newborn babies or adults (3).

In a first ever study of its kind, effects of colostrum supplements (bovine colostrum product) and probiotic (Bifidobacterium infantis) in children suffering from autism spectrum disorders was performed. These supplements greatly improved the gut health of these children, resolving issues like chronic constipation, diarrhea, or irritable bowels. Moreover, the occurrence of these issues also declined (4).

1. Quigley JD, Strohbehn RE, Kost CJ, O'Brien MM. Formulation of colostrum supplements, colostrum replacers and acquisition of passive immunity in neonatal calves. J Dairy Sci. 2001 Sep;84(9):2059-65. doi: 10.3168/jds.S0022-0302(01)74650-4. PMID: 11573786; PMCID: PMC7157919. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11573786/

2. https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Murray_Corke/publication/286002694_The_Use_of_Colostrum_and_Colostrum_Supplements_in_Neonatal_Calves/links/59cccd3745851556e987945a/The-Use-of-Colostrum-and-Colostrum-Supplements-in-Neonatal-Calves.pdf

3. Buttar et al., Dairy in Human Health and Disease Across the Lifespan, 2017, Pages 3-20. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B9780128098684000017

4. Sanctuary MR, Kain JN, Chen SY, Kalanetra K, Lemay DG, Rose DR, Yang HT, Tancredi DJ, German JB, Slupsky CM, Ashwood P, Mills DA, Smilowitz JT, Angkustsiri K. Pilot study of probiotic/colostrum supplementation on gut function in children with autism and gastrointestinal symptoms. PLoS One. 2019 Jan 9;14(1):e0210064. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0210064. PMID: 30625189; PMCID: PMC6326569. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30625189/


Is Colostrum Safe to Take?

Yes, absolutely! It is the very same substance that all animal mothers produce in their breast within the first 48 hours after giving birth.

It jumps starts the babies immune system and helps good bacteria attach to the intestinal wall.

There are no known drug interactions or side effects.

Front Microbiol. 2017 Oct 25;8:2100. Role of the Human Breast Milk-Associated Microbiota on the Newborns' Immune System: A Mini Review.


Dr. Vibhuti Rana, PhD says...

Since colostrum is basically a mammalian milk for a mammalian baby, it does not have any specific or known side-effects in neonate babies or adults. Therefore, I agree with what is written regarding safety of colostrum products in this section.

The people who are allergic to milk or milk products are advised to consult their doctors before self-treating themselves.


Medical Review by Dr. Atmika Paudel, PhD

The contents of the colostrum mentioned in the article above are correct and their biological functions are as mentioned in the article. There are more than 50 components present in colostrum, the primary components are immunoglobulins and growth factors. The article basically talks about bovine colostrum and benefits of the components present therein. In addition to the activities mentioned in the article above, several other activities of the components have been reported such as antioxidant property (1), beneficial activity for bone health (2), (3), and anticarcinogenic activity (4).

The presence of immunoglobulins in colostrum justifies its use against infection, inflammation, and allergy. The lactalbumins are known to help in improving stress conditions by raising the levels of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that contributes towards the feeling of well-being and happiness.

The article above mentions the beneficial roles of growth factors present in bovine colostrum, I would like to add here about the types of growth factors present in bovine colostrum. Bovine colostrum has growth factors such as insulin-like growth factors I and II, which promote the muscle growth; epidermal growth factor, which is responsible for stimulating gut immunity; transforming growth factor present in bovine colostrum, which stimulates gastrointestinal growth and repair and contributes towards increased gastric mucin production; platelet derived growth factor, which assist in ulcer-healing; and bovine colostral growth factor, which enhances immunity (5). Overall, the growth factors present in bovine colostrum promote the utilization of excess fat from the body thus sparing muscles.

People who have allergy to cow milk should take caution while consuming bovine colostrum.

1. Zabłocka, A., Sokołowska, A., Macała, J. et al. Int J Pept Res Ther (2019).
2. Inflammatory responses improve with milk ribonuclease-enriched lactoferrin supplementation in postmenopausal women. Inflamm Res. 2010 Nov;59(11):971-8. doi: 10.1007/s00011-010-0211-7. Epub 2010 May 15.
3. Milk ribonuclease-enriched lactoferrin induces positive effects on bone turnover markers in postmenopausal women. Osteoporos Int. 2009 Sep;20(9):1603-11. doi: 10.1007/s00198-009-0839-8. Epub 2009 Jan 27.
4. Cancer prevention by bovine lactoferrin and underlying mechanisms--a review of experimental and clinical studies. Biochem Cell Biol. 2002;80(1):131-6.
5. Role of Colostrum in Gastrointestinal Infections. Indian J Pediatr 2008; 75 (9) : 917-921.


Colostrum User Review

HI Dan

I just wanted to let you know that the colostrum chews are fantastic! My son's eczema has finally GONE after many years of trying so many different things. He has been taking the colostrum chews in the morning before breakfast, he has two per day and the itchy red eczema on his feet, legs has finally disappeared after only two weeks of taking it! His groin has also stopped itching. I am so grateful as he has just started school and I had visions of him scratching all through class but he doesn't. His feet and legs are smooth again. I have just added in custom probiotics 6 strain powder, now that his eczema has gone I will try to repopulate his gut a little faster.

Thanks you so much for all your helpful advice and support!

Michelle


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