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Normal milk contains 0.1% whereas colostrum contains 6 %. Milk fat The digestibility of milk is comparatively higher than other oils and fats. This can be attributed to existence of fat globules in aqueous phase forming an emulsion. This facilitates its easy absorption through the intestinal tract when compared to other fats which have to be emulsified with bile salts enzymes from pancreas and fat splitting lipases. Endowed with short and medium chain fatty acids milk fat can be easily absorbed when compared to long chain fatty acids because of the ability of the lipases to split the ester bonds in the former. Supplementation of milk fat in the diet increases the energy density. When compared to human milk the cow milk is low in essential fatty acids such as linoleic and linolenic acids.
Milk fat varies in amount and composition according to the breed species feed and lactation time of which feed being a major factor. Fat is distributed in globules as triglycerides (98-99 %) fat globule membrane in combination with phoshpholipids and lipoprotein (0.2 to 1.0 %) and also as free fatty acids cholesterol and phospholipids in the serum. Phospholipids These contain phosphorus in their molecules in addition to the fatty acids and glycerol; they also contain a nitrogenous base. Principally milk phospholipids are the Lecithin Cephalin and Sphingomyelin. Though fat-soluble they are hydrophilic and imbibe large quantity of water and swell. They are used as antioxidants for fat rich dairy products. Vitamins Various vitamins present in milk are as follows.
Casein May be defined as the major protein which is precipitated at pH 4.6 and is exclusive to milk. It is present in spherical bodies as micelles which vary in size with negative surface charge. The caseins of milk may be sub-divided into five main classes αs1 αs2 β gamma and k-caseins. In milk casein is present in combination with calcium in the form of calcium caseinate or more precisely calcium hyhdrogen caseinate. Whey proteins Are those in the whey fraction after the precipitation of casein at pH 4.6. These are the alpha-lactalbumin beta-lactoglobulin immunoglobulins lactoferrin transferrin proteose-peptone fractions etc. Most of these are globular proteins subject to heat denaturation. α-lactalbumin exists in variants A and B forms and is susceptible to denaturation by unfolding of the tertiary structure. β-lactoglobulin is identical to blood globulin and insoluble in water and is responsible for the transfer of antibodies.