Medicinal Values of Camel Milk

Medicinal Values of Camel Milk

Medicinal Values of Camel Milk

As estimation of Food and Agriculture Organization the total population of camel in the world is believed to be 25.89 million, of which 89% are one-humped dromedary camels (Camelusdromedarius) and the remaining 11% are the two-humped (Camelusbactrianus) that generally found in the cold deserts of Asia while more than 60% of the dromedary camel population is concentrated in the arid areas of North East African countries like Somalia, Sudan, Ethiopia and Kenya. Ethiopia ranks third in the world by the number of camel herd after Somalia and Sudan [1].

According to Peertechz

For desert people in Asia and Africa, camel is vital to daily life as a source of food and a means of transportation, and just as importantly, its milk has been used as medicines for diverse ailments since ancient times [2]. Camel can produce more milk for a longer period of time in arid zones and harshy environment than any other domestic livestock species [3]. The daily yield of camel milk ranges from 3 to 10 kg in a lactation period of 12 to 18 months (Gizachew et al 2014). Ethiopia which possesses about 2.4 million heads camels ranks second in camel milk production in the world next to Somalia. The annual camel milk production in Ethiopia is estimated as 75,000 tones [4].

Camel milk so called white gold of the desert is more similar to human milk than any other milk and differs from other ruminant milk because it contains low cholesterol, low sugar, high minerals (sodium, potassium, iron, copper, zinc and magnesium), high vitamin C, protective proteins like as LactoferrinlactoperoxidaseImmunoglobulins, lysozyme [5]. Camel milk has been acknowledged for a long time to provide a potential treatment for a series of diseases such as dropsy, jaundice, anti-hypertensive, asthma, and leishmaniasis or kala-azar [4,5].

It has been reported that camel milk contains the low quantity of β-casein and the lack of β-lactoglobulin which cause allergic reaction in lactose intolerant person [6]. Nevertheless, it contains insulin-like and protective protein used for the treatment of many ailments like diabetes, autism, and diarrhea and possesses anti-tumors properties [7]. Moreover, camel milk is endowed with very strong immune system [2] and remedy for peptic ulcers anti-malignant [8] anti-platelet and anti-thrombotic properties [9]. More recently, studies confirmed that camel’s milk is unique in terms of antioxidative factors, antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, anti-hepatitis, treatment for paratuberculosis, hypoglycaemic activity, anticancer, preventives of aging, remedy for autoimmune diseases, cosmetic and detergents [1,10,11].

A numerous reviews have been carried out in different milking animals in the world but since a camel is scientifically abandoned animal the importance and use of camel milk was not reviewed which created information gap in the area.

Therefore in the line with the above, the objectives of this paper are:

➢ To review available information on medicinal values of camel milk.

➢ To recommend further investigation concerning medicinal values of camel milk based on the information from this review.

Chemical composition of camel milk

Camel’s milk is generally an opaque white color and has a faint sweetish odor and sharp taste; sometimes it can be salty [12]. Its opaque white color because of the fats are finely homogenized throughout the milk whereas, the changes in taste are caused by the type of fodder and availability of drinking water [5]. Its density ranges from 1.026-1.035 and the pH from 6.2-6.5, both are lower than those of the cow’s milk and maximum buffering capacity of skim milk is at pH 4.95 [7].

According to most authors the composition of camel milk varies due to difference of geographical origin and year of publication of the published dates but other factors such as the physiological stage, feeding conditions, seasonal or physiological variations, genetic or health status of camel have also a paramount importance [6]. In general the average amount of components of camel milk is protein 3.4%; fat 3.5%; lactose 4.4%; ash 0.79%, while water covers 87% [13].


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