Is mare milk an appropriate food for people? – a review

Magdalena Pieszka 1 , Jarosław Łuszczyński 1 , Monika Zamachowska 2 , Romana Augustyn 1 , Bogusława Długosz 1  and Magdalena Hędrzak 3
  • 1 Department of Horse Breeding, Animal Science Institute, Agricultural University, Al. Mickiewicza 24/28, 30-059 Kraków, Poland
  • 2 Department of Medicine History, Collegium Medicum, Jagiellonian University, Kopernika 7, 31-034 Kraków, Poland
  • 3 Department of Cattle Breeding, Animal Science Institute, Agricultural University, Al. Mickiewicza 24/28, 30-059 Kraków, Poland


The use of equid milk in human nutrition is a very interesting research topic in relation to the specific characteristics of this drink. Mare’s milk has a composition similar to human milk and is well digested, so it is a perfect alternative to cow’s milk in the feeding of children who are allergic to cow’s milk. Equid milk’s low content of α-lactalbumin and β-lactoglobulin makes it appropriate for such children. Its high concentration of lactose allows for a better growth of intestinal microflora. Mare’s milk is characterised by a high content of lysozyme, lactoferrin and lactadherin and has an inhibiting effect on the development of pathogenic bacteria. Research done so far indicates that it may be helpful in treating atopic dermatitis as well as in improving skin appearance. The high content of vitamin C in mare’s milk influences its antioxidant value. Due to its lower content of fat and cholesterol it can be used to lower cholesterol intake as well as to control cardiovascular diseases. Mare’s milk has been proved to play a role in curing Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, as well as hepatitis and chronic gastric ulcers. The qualities of mare’s milk make it appropriate for use in children’s and elderly people’s nutrition in prophylaxis and as an aid to the process of curing various diseases.

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