Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

'Organic' milk is poorer in iodine than conventional milk

Date:
July 4, 2013
Source:
Plataforma SINC
Summary:
Milk from organic farms has a lower concentration of elements like zinc, iodine and selenium than milk produced by conventional farming methods. The discrepancy is due to the absence of mineral substances in the diets of the cows reared. According to researchers, animals on organic farms should have their diets supplemented with natural sources of iodine such as seaweed, because it is a very important element for children and pregnant women.

Milk from organic farms has a lower concentration of elements like zinc, iodine and selenium than milk produced by conventional farming methods. The discrepancy is due to the absence of mineral substances in the diets of the cows reared. According to researchers, animals on organic farms should have their diets supplemented with natural sources of iodine such as seaweed, because it is a very important element for children and pregnant women.

Related Articles


The concentration of nutrients in animal food products is linked to the diets of the animals reared. Conventional production methods provide mineral diet supplements, while in organic farming animals depend on the mineral content in soil, which may not be sufficient.

For this reason, researchers at the University of Santiago de Compostela compared the mineral and toxic elements of organic and conventional milk taken from over thirty farms located in the northeast of the Iberian Peninsula.

The results demonstrated that mineral element content in organic milk is low compared with conventional milk, although no differences were found in the quantity of toxic compounds such as cadmium, which were also detected in very low concentrations.

"Levels of the elements that are typically supplemented in the diets of livestock in conventional systems -- particularly iodine, copper, selenium and zinc -- are higher than those found in organic milk," Marta López, researcher at the University of Santiago de Compostela and co-author of the study, explains.

In the researcher's opinion, the fact that organic milk contains lower levels of elements such as copper and zinc is not a problem because milk is not the primary source of these elements in our diets.

"Iodine is another matter," López goes on to clarify. "The contribution of iodine to our diets in countries like Spain is covered by iodised salt; in other countries, like England, with milk. In Spain the lack of sufficient iodine in some kinds of milk is especially relevant for children, due to the importance of iodine in neurological development, but also to people with diets low in salt."

Iodine is necessary for the metabolism, especially during pregnancy and infancy. Iodine deficiency can cause scurvy, which has historically been a big problem the world over, particularly in populations at a distance from the coast, who did not eat much fish, and so milk and its derivatives were the primary source of iodine.

Seaweed as an alternative source

Nevertheless, according to López, the most relevant aspect of the study is that it brings this limitation to light and enables organic production to be improved. "There are natural sources of iodine that can be incorporated into the diet. We are trialling the use of seaweed as a source of iodine and have had good results," she affirms.

In addition, the scientists found that mineral content is higher in winter, which is when dietary supplementation is greater, as a result of the reduced availability of grass.

In any case, although one might draw the conclusion that conventional milk is more nutritious in terms of minerals, López is cautious: "Organic milk may have lower content of certain minerals, but it has other properties that are much more beneficial than those of conventional milk."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Plataforma SINC. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. F. Rey-Crespo, M. Miranda, M. López-Alonso. Essential trace and toxic element concentrations in organic and conventionalmilk in NW Spain. Food and Chemical Toxicology, 2013

Cite This Page:

Plataforma SINC. "'Organic' milk is poorer in iodine than conventional milk." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 July 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/07/130704094630.htm>.
Plataforma SINC. (2013, July 4). 'Organic' milk is poorer in iodine than conventional milk. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/07/130704094630.htm
Plataforma SINC. "'Organic' milk is poorer in iodine than conventional milk." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/07/130704094630.htm (accessed October 30, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Arm Restores Amputee Dexterity

Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Arm Restores Amputee Dexterity

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 29, 2014) — A Swedish amputee who became the first person to ever receive a brain controlled prosthetic arm is able to manipulate and handle delicate objects with an unprecedented level of dexterity. The device is connected directly to his bone, nerves and muscles, giving him the ability to control it with his thoughts. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Google To Use Nanoparticles, Wearables To Detect Disease

Google To Use Nanoparticles, Wearables To Detect Disease

Newsy (Oct. 29, 2014) — Google X wants to improve modern medicine with nanoparticles and a wearable device. It's all an attempt to tackle disease detection and prevention. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can Drinking Milk Lead To Early Death?

Can Drinking Milk Lead To Early Death?

Newsy (Oct. 29, 2014) — Researchers in Sweden released a study showing heavy milk drinkers face an increased mortality risk from a variety of causes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: The US Will Not 'run and Hide' From Ebola

Obama: The US Will Not 'run and Hide' From Ebola

AP (Oct. 29, 2014) — Surrounded by health care workers in the White House East Room, President Barack Obama said the U.S. will likely see additional Ebola cases in the weeks ahead. But he said the nation can't seal itself off in the fight against the disease. (Oct. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins