Colostrum - A natural powerhouse

Colostrum, also known as bisnings, beestings, and first milk, supports our immune system naturally and traditionally.


Colostrum, also known as bisnings, beestings, and first milk, supports our immune system naturally and traditionally.

This unique first milk is the first strengthening nutrition of each mammal and human. Colostrum extracts are not a drug or a nutritional supplement, but rather a special type of food.

1.     Beesting for the immune system: What is colostrum?

2.     The ingredients: What does colostrum contain?

3.     Origin of colostrum: Extraction

4.     The best colostrum: Processing

5.     How does colostrum work?

6.     Colostrum and the suspicion of doping: IGF-1

1.  Beesting for the immune system: What is colostrum?

Colostrum denotes the first milk that infants receive from their mothers during their first hours of life. Humans and animals produce it like milk in conjunction with the birth. If the colostrum is from a cow, it is also known as beesting in agriculture.

The first milkstrengthens the only slightly developed or even non-existent immune defense of infants so they are capable of surviving. For this reason, colostrum has a uniquely concentrated mixture of valuable ingredients that support the immune system.

2. The ingredients: What does colostrum contain?

Contrary to a human infant, a newborn calf has no antibodies of its own, therefore it is vulnerable to germs and the environment. For this reason, bovine colostrum contains a concentration of immunoglobulin that is 40 times higher than human first milk as a study of the Natural History Magazine determined already in 1969.1 Compared to milk, other nutrients are also contained in a higher concentration.2With a normal intake of high-quality colostrum of 1-2 grams per day, the lactose content is in turn so minimal that no reaction occurs even in those with a lactose intolerance.

The following nutrients were previously proven in bovine first milk:

  • Protein (albumin)
  • Lactoferrin
  • Amino acids
  • Minerals
  • Fat
  • Vitamins
  • Nucleotides
  • Enzymes
  • Growth factors
  • Immunoglobulins (antibodies)

3. Origin of colostrum: Animal welfare

Different qualities of colostrum are offered on the market and various methods of extraction are practiced. For the best quality, just as with the milk, the holistic health of the animals is crucial. It is directly associated with species-appropriate, organic free-range farming. Organic certifications also guarantee that no hormones are used that could contaminate the colostrum. Additionally, careful processing without heating, i.e. without pasteurizing the colostrum, is paramount for its quality.

We are not taking any food away from the calves

Cows produce colostrum in excess even in organic dairy farming. This means that the calf gets more than enough of it to drink before the farmer skims off a portion as supply. After collecting the supply, a few liters of colostrum remain, which according to Swiss and European regulations may not end up in milk or in cheese processing. Reputable manufacturers collect only this surplus of organic colostrum and carefully process it.

4. The best Colostrum: Processing makes the difference

Most common colostrum products are pasteurized, i.e. heated. Pasteurization destroys the temperature-sensitive nutrients contained therein and thus the colostrum essentially loses its efficacy. The best organic colostrum is carefully micro-filtered/cold-filtered. This complex process preserves the valuable nutrients and guarantees food safety. In addition, manufacturers of premium-grade colostrum have their organic colostrum expertly tested and certified by independent test institutes.

5. How does colostrum work?

The immune system – it makes us strong

In addition to our inherent defense, we have an adaptive immune system that learns from invasive pathogenic germs. The additional support from immunoglobulin and other nutrients from their mothers contained in colostrum fortify newborn calves and babies as well, for these antibodies render invasive germs harmless. Even after infancy, our immune system is our defense that needs to be bolstered. Colostrum supports our immune system in a natural way for our entire life.

Anti-Bacterial Effect – Natural Resistance

Researchers have attributed an antibacterial effect to bovine colostrum.3 The lactoferrin contained in beesting has properties that remove iron from bacteria. However, as iron is vital for them, the pathogens die off.

Colostrum neutralizes free radicals and activates our immune cells

Researchers around Professor Josef Beut at the University of Cologne also determined an antioxidant effect in a scientific study. In the study, the beesting neutralized free radicals and activated immune cells.4

Lactose in colostrum? No problem

Contrary to the milk we drink, colostrum has an imperceptible amount of lactose. Thus, it can be ingested by people with lactose intolerance without hesitation.

6. Colostrum and the suspicion of doping

Can colostrum be ingested in sports?

Colostrum has long been tried and tested in professional sports and is a natural support for the immune system and enhanced personal performance.

Colostrum does not pose any risk of doping. The increase of IGF-1 in the blood through supplementation with organic colostrum is precluded. This is also shown in a studyby the University of Kent & the University of Lincoln * from February 2019. It demonstrates that the consumption of bovine colostrum does not cause any increase of IGF-1: “Oral bovine colostrum supplementation does not increase circulating insulin-like growth factor -1 concentration in healthy adults” (German translation from English).

Although colostrum naturally contains inherent growth factors, specifically IGF-1, the IGF-1 of colostrum isdemonstrably destroyed in the stomach* and absorption into the bloodstream is thus precluded.

*School of Sport and Exercise Sciences, University of Kent at Medway, Chatham, UK. 2. Lincoln Institute for Health, University of Lincoln, Lincoln, UK. 3. Centre for Immunobiology, Blizard Institute, Barts and The London School of Medicine, Queen Mary University of London, London, UK. 4. Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry, University of Plymouth, Plymouth, UK. 5. Centre for Immunobiology, Blizard Institute, Barts and The London School of Medicine, Queen Mary University of London, London, UK. 6. Peninsular Medical School, University of Plymouth, Plymouth, UK.

Colostrum is not on the Wada doping list.

Nevertheless, we advise to choose colostrum products prudently. It is important to consider animal husbandry: organic certificates guarantee that no hormones are used in breeding that could contaminate the colostrum. The organic origin and certified processing decide if the colostrum products qualify as premium quality.


1 Bruce, C.E.: Natural History Magazine, February 1969

2 Kritzinger, Franz:Die Qualitätseinstufung von Kolostrum mit einem einfachen Präzisionstrichter, 2017, München, S. 6, last accessed on 06/25/2019

3 Klapper, D.G. et al:Endocrinology, June 1983 (?!)

4 Colostrum wirkt antioxidativ und stärkt die, 18.01.2008, last accessed on 06/25/2019 (?!)