The nutritional value of Donkey's milk for humans
The nutritional study of Donkey's milk can look at both macronutrients and micronutrients. Donkey's milk also contains a certain number of active compounds that play a nutritional role in protection or growth.
The carbohydrate content was not much or at all affected by any of the factors studied (breed, farm, stage of lactation, etc.). Most of the carbohydrate content comes from lactose, with an average of 68.8g / liter, similar to human breast milk, which has around 70 g of lactose per liter (INRA publication, editor: G. Freud). Lactose is important to fetal development, especially for the central nervous system, which may make it strategic to breast feeding infants. Some humans are lactose intolerant.
Fat accounts for 50-60% of milk's energy content. Like breast milk, Donkey's milk is low in fat (38 g / liter on average). This figure may vary drastically from one case to another. Around 98% of fats are triglycerides. Donkey's milk has a high percentage of essential fatty acids. Linoleic (omega 6) and linolenic (omega 3) acids make up 8.15% and 6.32% of total fatty acids respectively. This polyunsaturated fatty acid content makes Donkey's milk closer to breast milk (11.3% of total fatty acids on average) than cow's milk (only 2.9% of total fatty acids) in terms of essential fatty acids (INRA publication, editor: G. Freud). These essential fatty acids are very important to the development of the brain and the retina.
Milk contains a complex blend of proteins, and protein content varies from species to species. With 17.2 g of protein per liter, Donkey's milk is by far the closest to human breast milk (9-15 g/ liter) (INRA publication, editor: G. Freud). Plus, it has been demonstrated that this percentage falls throughout lactation, when it is even closer to breast milk. Goat's milk and cow's milk are much higher in protein (29% and 33% respectively) (INRA publication, editor: G. Freud). Protein is the most common cause of intolerance to cow's milk, affecting 0.3-7.5% of all children. When breast feeding is not possible, scientific studies (Monti et al. Pediatr. Allergy Immunol. 2007: 18; 258-264; and J.Biol. Regulators & Homeostatic Agents 2012: 26 (3S); 75-82) have shown that donkey milk, as non-exclusive food, can be a valid alternative to the so-called "formulated milks" in cases of allergy to cow's milk proteins.
Our electrolyte requirements are based on the need to keep the ionic extracellular concentration in calcium, sodium and chloride in balance. Within the cells, the concentration in potassium, magnesium and phosphorous must be maintained. Human milk contains 2.4 g/ liter of total minerals. An electrolyte analysis of Donkey's milk has shown that it has higher calcium and phosphorous rates than human milk but lower rates than cow's milk. The most common element in Donkey's milk is calcium, which binds with caseins in the form of phosphocaseinate thanks to the presence of serine residues. Since phosphorous and calcium are very important to building bones, they have been the subject of many studies, in particular studies on osteoporosis.
The main vitamins found in Donkey's milk are vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, C, D, and E. These vitamins are essential to the human body, giving this milk an obvious nutritional interest. Donkey's milk is closer to human milk than to cow's or sheep's milk...