Hump Day? Camel Milk To The Rescue

Like it or lump it, it's here to stay.

No longer are the only milk options for morning coffee full-fat, low-fat and skim. These days, there's an assortment of milk varieties and dairy-free alternatives to choose from -- including lactose-free, soy, almond and coconut.

But just when you thought you'd heard them all, this hump day, hold on to your double-strength mocha-chinos because there's another milk attracting attention -- camel milk.

While camel milk is relatively new as a drink Down Under, it's been used for centuries in the Middle East and Africa, where its drinkers say its health benefits make it a superior drink to other milks. In fact, experts have dubbed the milk a bit of "superfood" thanks to its high nutrient content.

Camel milk contains 10 times the amount of iron and five times the amount of vitamin C of cow's milk. What's more, it has less fat and is rich in iron, unsaturated fatty acids and B-vitamins. But probably its most appealing feature is that it doesn't contain whey proteins that can trigger allergies.

Lauren Brisbane, Chair of the Australian Camel Industry Association and director of QCamel dairy farm on the Sunshine Coast, told SBS the milk could even offer relief for those suffering from food allergies and intolerances.

"Camel milk is soothing on the body and incredibly digestible,” Lauren said. But she added, “It’s not a silver bullet or a quick fix,” and should be consumed in conjunction with a healthy diet."

While some people have an obvious aversion to trying the milk, Lauren says once you can put your fears aside, most people love the clean taste camel milk has.

“I’m finding young people are really up for it, or anyone who has done their research,” she added.

Other anecdotal reports suggest the milk may even play a role in reducing the effects of autism, and while that's yet to be proven, a study published in the journal Evidence-based complementary and Alternative Medicine revealed camel milk may indeed play a role in reducing oxidative stress in children with the condition.

What's also good about the milk is that it has a multitude of different culinary uses -- including delicious drinks and desserts -- and it is increasingly being stocked at cafes, restaurants and health food stores across the country.

The only downside as the moment is the cost -- it currently retails at approximately $20 for a litre bottle (which is odd when you think we have over one million camels in Australia).

While the jury remains out on the overall benefits of drinking camel milk, one thing is for sure, it makes a delicious alternative to regular milk. So next time you hit your local coffee haunt, why not trade your low-fat soy cappuccino for nutrient dense camel latte. Yum!  One lump or two? 

Feature image: Getty/Instagram/@qcameldairy