What do colostrum do?

Colostrum is the first milk produced by all mammals, and it contains large proportions of proteins and immunoglobulin G. Newborn mammals have an immature digestive system, but colostrum contains the nutrient in compact form, securing the newborn all the nutrients needed.


Calves are born completely without immune system, but they receive it from the cow via the colostrum. The colostrum also contribute to the mature the gut and get the digestive system started. Infants receive an almost complete immune system passively from their mother during the pregnancy, while the rest comes as bioactive factors in the colostrum. Scientific studies have identified the bioactive factors in both human and bovine colostrum and found they are identical. However, the concentrations of the bioactive factors are 40 times higher in bovine colostrum compared to human colostrum.


Colostrum contains milk proteins in the form of caseins and whey proteins of high biological value. This means that they contain important amino acids in an easily absorbable form for the body.


The bioactive factors in colostrum interact and possess cumulative effects. An intact milk matrix is thus important for the effects of the colostrum.  The milk matrix also protects the bioactive factors from being digested, so they arrive intact and functional at their respective places in the gut.