Sheep's Milk: Properties, Benefits and Nutritional Value

We are going to show you the benefits of consuming sheep's milk, as well as its nutritional value. It's a high-quality liquid that can be included in the diet.
Sheep's Milk: Properties, Benefits and Nutritional Value
Saúl Sánchez Arias

Written and verified by the nutritionist Saúl Sánchez Arias.

Last update: 25 September, 2022

Sheep’s milk is a product with a high nutritional quality. It can be included in the diet on a regular basis, accompanying or replacing cow’s milk.

We’re going to tell you all about its health benefits, but, first of all, we’d just like to remind you that dairy products must be included in the diet on a frequent basis. In fact, the main dietary guidelines recommend the consumption of at least a couple of servings of these products every day.

This will make it easier to meet calcium requirements, and it’ll even help to guarantee an adequate protein intake.

The nutritional value of sheep’s milk

From a nutritional point of view, it should be noted that sheep’s milk provides about 100 calories per 100 milliliters. It has 5 grams of carbohydrates and 5.6 grams of proteins in that portion.

Fats are the major component within the macronutrients, with 6.3 grams in the mentioned dose. As far as the lipid profile is concerned, it’s important to note that most of the fatty acids are of the saturated type.

However, sheep’s milk also contains several types of essential micronutrients. It provides calcium, zinc, vitamin A, vitamin C, folic acid, and sodium. For this reason, it’s an ideal product to ensure that the daily requirements are covered.

Some dairy products.
A variety of dairy products in our diet can improve our metabolic profile, providing essential nutrients.

Benefits of sheep’s milk

First of all, we’ll talk about the positive effect of sheep’s milk on lean mass functioning. This is due to its concentration of high biological value proteins.

These nutrients have all the essential amino acids and an excellent digestibility score. They have proven to be able to help prevent the development of complex pathologies, such as sarcopenia.

Furthermore, sheep’s milk will be decisive in preventing alterations in the bone matrix that can increase the risk of suffering fractures. This is key in the case of women who have reached the menopause stage, since osteoporosis in these situations is more frequent. To avoid it, vitamin D and calcium intake should be optimized, as stated in a study published in Osteoporosis International.

We shouldn’t forget the need to meet the daily requirement of vitamin A to prevent problems related to visual health. Research published in the journal Sub-Cellular Biochemistry confirms this.

Sheep’s milk has significant amounts of this nutrient, so it’ll be perfect to achieve this effect. We’re even talking about an element that accelerates the healing of wounds.

In pregnant women, sheep’s milk can be a recommended product, given its levels of folic acid. The needs of this vitamin increase during pregnancy. It’s usual for this supplement to be administered to avoid deficits in the fetus. However, increasing its presence in the diet through fresh foods will also be important.

You may also be interested in: The Benefits and Risks of Drinking Milk

Is cow’s milk better?

It’s difficult to give an answer to this question.

The truth is that they aren’t mutually exclusive foods. Both can appear in the diet on a regular basis.

They’re both products that are considered nutritionally dense, as well as healthy. The protein concentration and lipid profile vary a little, but this change won’t really cause significant alterations.

Cow's milk.
Cow’s milk and sheep’s milk can complement each other. It’s not necessary for one to completely replace the other.

Sheep’s milk: a food with high nutritional quality

Sheep’s milk is an excellent quality food, so it can be consumed regularly. However, you shouldn’t overdo the portions. It’s still a fairly calorie-rich foodstuff due to its lipids, and it could cause weight gain.

Some people may not react positively to milk consumption from a gastrointestinal point of view. This is related to changes in the microbiota profile, thus experiencing a loss of bacterial diversity.

In any case, if symptoms are experienced after milk intake, it’s best to try a lactose-free variety. A professional can also be consulted for a diagnostic test.

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  • Martone AM, Marzetti E, Calvani R, et al. Exercise and Protein Intake: A Synergistic Approach against Sarcopenia. Biomed Res Int. 2017;2017:2672435. doi:10.1155/2017/2672435
  • Weaver CM, Alexander DD, Boushey CJ, et al. Calcium plus vitamin D supplementation and risk of fractures: an updated meta-analysis from the National Osteoporosis Foundation [published correction appears in Osteoporos Int. 2016 Aug;27(8):2643-6]. Osteoporos Int. 2016;27(1):367-376. doi:10.1007/s00198-015-3386-5
  • Saari JC. Vitamin A and Vision. Subcell Biochem. 2016;81:231-259. doi:10.1007/978-94-024-0945-1_9