A weak immune system is an open door to disease and infection. A robust and balanced immune system, on the other hand, is Nature’s best protection against illness. Colostrum a fundamental, simple, and natural way to support a strong our immune system.
When we are born, colostrum establishes our immune system. Breast milk actually doesn’t flow for about the first 72 hours. It is colostrum that flows initially from the breast directly into the bloodstream.
When we are born, our intestinal wall is permeable so the big colostrum molecules will reach the bloodstream. Colostrum is like the software programming to establish the foundation for a strong immune system. Colostrum then seals the tight junctions of the gut wall to protect against allergens, pathogens, and undigested food from gaining access. Voila!
It used to be that people lived on farms and ate much of their food from their own land and animals. They drank their milk raw – raw milk is full of same immune growth factors in colostrum and acts like a “booster shot” throughout our lives.
But today, most of us do not get raw (unprocessed) milk and these immune system benefits are missing from our diet. The growth factors IGF-1 and IGF-2 help cells identify when they are damaged so they can put up a flag and be targeted for destruction (apoptosis). Other growth factors are vital for circulation, neurological repair, bone and tissue repair. We produce less IGF-1 as we age and this is why our cellular structure ages – because we have less and less of this growth factor to repair and regenerate our cells. Colostrum provides these critical growth factors.
We have bacteria working in our gut that do everything from digesting our food and making vitamins, to keeping our moods well balanced – the gut is the “second brain”; 90% of our neurotransmitters are made in the gut. A balanced gut biome is said to have 80% “good” bacteria and 20% “bad” bacteria. (An example of bacteria out of control is an overgrowth of candida.) A robust amount of “good” bacteria are constantly pushing out the bad bacteria.
Our gut biome is significantly challenged today by things that tilt that balance from good to bad:
- Glyphosate, an herbicide used on soy, corn, and other crops
- Antibiotics – directly through prescriptions and indirectly through residues of antibiotics used in commercial livestock operations
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
- Emotional stress
- Birth control pills and corticosteroids (prednisone)
These things can make our gut wall permeable, or leaky. Most medical experts who study the impact of nutrition on health agree that leaky gut is virtually epidemic today. One of the first, sure-fire signs of that is allergies – allergies to food like processed dairy and to environmental triggers like pollen. The intestinal wall is made up of tight junctions that let only the smallest, most fully digested particles through to the bloodstream. But a permeable gut wall – think a slice of Swiss cheese with holes in it – lets bigger particles of undigested food get through to the bloodstream. The immune system sees these bigger molecules and says: “These look weird. Is this the salmon she had for lunch or is this a pathogen? I don’t know. But it’s my job to attack things that look weird so I am going to attack it.” And there you have the start of an autoimmune response that can lead to allergies, asthma, irritable bowel, chronic fatigue syndrome, fungal disorders, and inflammatory joint disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis.
(Want to see a short video on leaky gut? Click here.)
One advantage of colostrum is that is can heal a leaky (permeable) gut wall.
Another advantage is that it contains Lactoferrin, nature’s antifungal. Lactoferrin has been shown to be effective against a wide variety of pathogens and fungi such as candida, C. diff and E. coli, salmonella, and rotavirus. Lactoferrin helps the good bacteria in the gut thrive.
Colostrum also contains proline-rich-polypeptides (PRPs) that regulate the immune system – they can activate an underactive immune system and suppress an overactive immune system. They provide defense against oxidative stress, beta-amyloid aggregation, and inflammation.
Colostrum also contains leptin, the hormone that regulates appetite by telling us: “You are full, stop eating.”
A mother’s colostrum has a fatty membrane (phospholipids) surrounding the milk globules which allows them to slip past the acid in the stomach and arrive in the intestines intact. Usually when colostrum supplements are made, that fatty membrane is removed to improve its shelf life. And often the colostrum is overheated which makes it little more than powdered milk. Sovereign Laboratories’ colostrum is flash pasteurized and made with a liposomal delivery (LD) system which adds back the phospholipids to protect the colostrum as it passes through the stomach.
Sovereign Laboratories’ colostrum is also made year-round from pasture fed Grade A dairy cows in the Southwestern United States. These cows are certified to be healthy, free of BST, BSE, and antibiotics. Colostrum is made from the first milking, which is produced within 1-12 hours of the calf’s birth. This means the colostrum has peak quantities of PRPs, Lactoferrin, growth factors, immunoglobulins, and other active immune components. The colostrum is processed weekly in the only plant dedicated to the manufacture of colostrum for human consumption.
A note about milk allergies: What people call a milk allergy is the crossover of partially digested milk proteins into the bloodstream as a result of leaky gut syndrome. And it is a relatively new phenomenon – prior to the invention of antibiotics and the homogenization of milk, people drank raw milk without problems. Colostrum-LD does not contain lactose or milk caseins.
A note about probiotics: The body is continually sampling, through the Peyer’s patches in the gut, all microbes flowing through the body. When you have leaky gut, even the beneficial bacteria that are sampled and get into the bloodstream can trigger the body to create antibodies. In other words, if you have leaky gut and probiotics get into the bloodstream, the antibody process means they may not colonize. You can take probiotics till the cows come home and it won’t do you a bit of good, according to Douglas Wyatt. You have to heal the leaky gut first.
Not all colostrum is the same. Sovereign Labs Colostrum-LD, I find, stands head and shoulders above the rest – partly because of the liposomal delivery system; partly because the cows are pasture fed; partly because of the low-heat manufacturing process; and because of the integrity of man behind it, Douglas Wyatt.
Colostrum-LD comes in powdered form, plain or vanilla. There are capsules too but they are not cost efficient unless for some reason you really want pills. Mix the powder in 6 ounces of clean water, and take it on an empty stomach, away from food. Start small, perhaps a quarter teaspoon and work up to a tablespoon. If you feel discomfort or pain in your abdomen, that is often a sign of the “bad” buys in the gut waging war with the “good” guys, so back off; work up slowly. I like to combine it with the liposomal form of vitamin C because the two work well together.
This is not sold in stores. To order, go to https://colostrumld.com/apple