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Consumption of dairy products of biodynamic origin is correlated with increased contents of rumenic and trans-vaccenic acid in the breast milk of lactating women

Simões-Wüst, Ana Paula, Rist, Lukas, Mueller, André, Huber, Machteld, Steinhart, Hans, Thijs, Carel
Organic agriculture 2011 v.1 no.3 pp. 161-166
breast milk, conjugated linoleic acid, diet, elaidic acid, hydrogenated oils, infants, isomers, lactating women, maternal nutrition, milk
Our previous work showed that incorporation of organic dairy products in the maternal diet may lead to increased contents of the conjugated linoleic acid isomers (CLA) in human breast milk, which might positively affect infant’s health. Now, the effect of biodynamic—a special form of organic—dairy products in the diet on the CLA content in human breast milk has been analysed. The content of rumenic acid (the main CLA) in breast milk was higher in the women consuming biodynamic products (n = 64, 0.323% of total fat, P < 0.001) than in the women with a conventional diet (n = 175, 0.254%), with the group of women consuming other dairy products including organic (but not biodynamic) showing an intermediate value (n = 44, 0.279%). The contents of the CLA-precursor trans-vaccenic acid (TVA) paralleled those of rumenic acid, whereas the opposite was found for those of elaidic acid that often occurs in high concentrations in partially hydrogenated fats. Both the higher contents of CLA and TVA as well as the lower level of elaidic acid in the milk of women consuming biodynamic products might conceivably contribute to a better infant’s health.