Camel products are increasingly getting acceptance worldwide since they are used as a source of medicine and food as well as raw material in the manufacture of different health products such as soap and shampoos.

Camel milk is high in calcium; therefore, it helps in developing stronger bones among many other benefits.

But even with the numerous health benefits, people undergoing surgery are cautioned against taking the milk.

According to Dr. Millie Hinkle, founder of Camel Milk USA, patients undergoing surgery should avoid consuming camel milk.

Surgery patients

“Patients undergoing any surgery requiring anesthesia should discontinue consuming camel milk”, warns Dr. Hinkle.

There is a specific time frame that camel milk consumption must be discontinued before administering anesthesia.

“I have so observed the requirement for additional anesthesia when localized anesthesia such as in dental offices is needed. Patients on pain medication require more medication for pain management as well,” notes Dr. Hinkle.

Mr. Abadalla Rashid, a Norwegian Refugee Council worker and regular consumer of camel milk, states that camel milk has a number of health benefits.

“I drink camel milk and all I can say is that it makes the bones strong, gives energy to the body and cleans up the digestive system and it is good for people with diabetes”.

A typical Somali will ask for tea with camel milk

Cost of camel milk

“The milk is expensive especially in Nairobi for the common mwananchi; a liter goes for KE 150. A glass of the same product goes for KE 150 in local restaurants” says Mohamed Ali, an engineering student at the Technical University of Kenya.

Far from the known health benefits, among the Somalis in Kenya and the Horn of Africa, camel products have a cultural significance.

When a person is to be anointed, the milk is poured on them as a symbol of community leadership. In other significant events like weddings, visitors are massively received with fresh camel milk.

13 Health benefits of camel milk

1) It provides energy that sustains the body for a whole day. Having 2-3 glasses of camel milk will push you through the whole day.

2) Unlike others like cow milk, it contains short-chained fat, which enhances body weight loss.

For instance, cow milk will increase the size of your tummy due to the availability of fats in the milk. The milk from the camel is low in cholesterol.

3) Camel milk contains 10 times more iron than cow milk. It modulates the immune system with the presence of immunoglobulin and antibodies.

Iron from the milk maintains proper regulation of blood. A high level of vitamin C is found abundantly in the milk also.

4) Camel milk enhances the optimum management of diabetes. Research shows the insulin-like protein in camel milk helps in controlling blood sugar levels.

According to DR. RP Agrawal, a leading researcher, 500 ml of raw, fresh camel milk daily improves the lives of diabetics due to the existence of the insulin protein in the milk.

“Type I and Type II diabetics need specific doses of the camel milk for their insulin levels, and should not be consuming any dairy products other than camel milk while they are trying to reduce their glucose levels.

Studies have shown that cow’s milk can raise glucose levels and cholesterol, while camel milk has shown to reduce glucose and cholesterol levels in trial studies,” explains Dr. Hinkle.

5) The milk treats allergies. A study published in the December 2005 edition of the “Israel Medical Association Journal” says that investigation on some children revealed a positive response where they were given camel milk as treatment and get cured with no side effects.

6) It helps reduce belly fat. This will flush out waste from the stomach. Who doesn’t want to have a flat tummy? You absolutely do. Camel milk provides the best alternative.

7) It controls high blood pressure. Instead of using tablets with a negative effect, the milk should be your companion for faster healing and protection.

8) Milk also provides anti-aging properties. Instead of applying chemicals that may have a negative impact on your body choose camel milk.

It contains alpha hydroxyl acid, which helps the skin to be smooth. For older people, this seems heaven-sent but what are you waiting for?

9) United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) recognized camel milk to be an important aspect of human health development. To devotees, camel milk is pure nectar.

While slightly saltier than cow’s milk, it is very good for you. It is three times as rich in vitamin C as cow’s milk.

10) Aid in treatments of cancer. Studies conducted by King Saud University, Saudi Arabia and the University of Alberta, Canada, revealed successful applications of camel milk for the treatment of cancer and other health complications.

11) Strong bone development. It contains calcium for the development of strong bones. Those who consume milk on a daily basis have stronger bones.

12) Reduces anxiety and stress. Camel milk aids in reducing the level of anxiety and stress as well as improves mood.

GABA also called Gamma-Aminobutyric acid is a neurotransmitter that plays a significant role in the normal functioning of the brain.

Camel milk is reported to contain more GABA than cow’s milk. Lower levels of the neurotransmitter are associated with anxiety, epilepsy and mood disorder.  The milk performs better in activating the Gama thus enhancing relaxation.

13) Good for the heart. Eating a balanced diet and exercising every day is the recommended way to maintain good cardiovascular health.

But if you happen to have a habit of enjoying fatty, cholesterol-rich foods, adding camel milk to your diet could help reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke.