One comment we’ve both heard and uttered over the many years we’ve milked cows without grain inputs usually went something like this, “if someone would just do some serious lab testing on 100% grass-fed dairy …” Well, now, according to new research published in the Good Science and Nutrition journal, we know that cows fed a 100 percent grass and legume-based diet produce nutritionally enhanced milk.

In a collaborative international project involving the University of Minnesota, Johns Hopkins University, Newcastle University in England, Southern Cross University in Australia and the Aarhus University Hospital in Denmark, researchers found that cows fed a 100 percent grass and legume-based diet produce milk with elevated levels of omega-3 and CLA, providing a healthier balance of fatty acids.

The improved fatty acid profile in grassfed milk and dairy products bring the omega-6/omega 3 ratio to a near 1:1, compared to 5.7:1 in conventional whole milk.

Omega 6 and omega 3 fatty acids are essential human nutrients, yet consuming too much omega-6 and too little omega-3 can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, obesity and diabetes. Today, Americans consume 10 to 15 grams of omega-6 for every gram of omega-3.

“The near-perfect balance of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids in grassfed milk and dairy products will help consumers looking for simple, lifestyle options to reduce the risk of cardiovascular and other metabolic diseases,” says co-author Charles Benbrook, a Visiting Scholar at the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University. The team analysed over 1,160 samples of whole grassfed milk taken over three years from on-farm bulk tanks prior to any processing.

While the results of this study are such exciting news, it’s hard to finish off this post without mentioning that Dr. Weston A. Price came to the same conclusion in the early 1930s when he was traveling the globe studying people groups untouched by Western food. So, as thankful as I am to the researchers from Johns Hopkins and the other collaborating universities, my hat goes off to Dr. Price, without whose research I would not have raised my children on raw milk products loaded with what Dr. Price called the X-Factor.

Find the full article here.