Goat (Capra hircus) is one of the main sources of milk and meat products for human consumption. Goat milk differs from cow and human milk in both composition and nutritional properties. Goat milk and other goat-derived products contain several bioactive compounds that might be useful in patients suffering from a variety of chronic diseases. Several peptides, fats, and oligosaccharides present in goat’s milk can be potentially useful in cardiovascular disease, metabolic disorders, neurological degeneration, or in promoting intestinal health. They have also shown chemopreventive properties in cancer. In addition, the oligosaccharides present in goat’s milk have immunomodulatory properties, prevent adhesion of pathogenic bacteria, and have prebiotic, probifidogenic effects. Due to its potential health benefits, goat milk is particularly recommended for infants, older adults, and convalescing people. This chapter gives an overview of the biological activities of goat products and the effects of peptides, fats, and oligosaccharides present in goat milk on pathogenic bacteria, as well as their ability to regulate immunological, gastrointestinal, hormonal, and neurological responses in humans.
Part of the book: Goat Science