Humans and goats go way back. Together with dogs, the goat was the first breed of animal to be domesticated. An efficient milking beast, with a yield five times that of cows in proportion to their size, they could be taken on sea journeys as portable milk banks, which cemented their popularity and saw them transported around the world. Since then the status of goat’s milk hasn’t really wavered. Rich in minerals, amino acids, fatty acids and protein, it is perfect for babies and children, and the absence of casein makes it ideal for the lactose intolerant too.
In the first century AD, Pliny the Elder wrote, “The most nutritive milk, in all cases, is woman’s milk, and next to that goats’ milk”. Today this has been scientifically proven and not just in terms of human consumption either. It’s neutral pH makes goat’s milk ideal for soothing parched, damaged skin. It also contains alpha-hydroxy acids that break down and remove dead skin cells and a multitude of vitamins, including A, B-12, C, D, E and K – vitamin A being a powerful weapon in the fight against skin roughness, blemishes and wrinkles. It also contains 30% fatty acids, which are highly hydrating, working to reverse the drying effects of wind and cold weather; minerals like potassium, phosphorus, and even selenium, which is known to counter sun damage.
It’s easy to see then why, in the ancient world, goats were a symbol of wealth and plenty – the dairy largesse described in the Bible’s “land of milk and honey” comes not from cows, but from goats.
Perhaps its most famous advocate though is none other than the legendary Queen of Egypt, Cleopatra, who is said to have taken daily baths in the stuff and subsequently transfixed two supreme Roman leaders of the day – Julius Caesar and Mark Antony – with its nutritive effects.
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