1. July 2021
The One Health Concept

Cow’s milk can cause allergies, but raw milk protects against allergies. Why is that? People, animals, plants and the environment usually all come into play when an allergy develops. Allergology is teaming up with many other sciences to investigate these many factors within the One Health concept.


Not only drinking raw milk, but also living on a farm with cows protects against allergies. One of the reasons for this is beta-lactoglobin (BLG), the most common protein in whey. BLG can even be detected in barn dust, in the surrounding air and in farmers’ beds. It keeps the immune system from developing an allergy by transporting protective elements, such as vitamins and zinc, into the immune cells.  At the same time, BLG has been identified as one of the most common triggers of cow’s milk allergies (referred to by its allergen name Bos d 5).
Why? BLG probably protects against allergies when it is loaded with vitamins and iron compounds. However, if the BLG protein remains unloaded, it causes allergies.

One Health

But what prevents BLG unloaded and makes it an allergy trigger? Is it the cow feed, stress in the stable, diseases, or are general environmental conditions to blame? The answer remains unclear. Many conditions could increase the risk of allergies and many of them could be somehow interconnected.



Europäische Akademie für Allergologie und Klinische Immunologie (EAACI) – Arbeitsgruppe One Health. Last retrieved on 25 May 2021


Fiocchi A. et al. World Allergy Organization (WAO) Diagnosis and Rationale for Action against Cow’s Milk Allergy (DRACMA) Guidelines. The World Allergy Organization Journal 2010;3: 57–161.


Grötschl Nina. One Health: Ein wichtiges Konzept im Kampf gegen Allergien. Pressemitteilung der Veterinärmedizinischen Fakultät Wien vom 19.05.2021.  Last retrieved on 25 May 2021.


Pali-Schöll I et al. One Health in allergology: A concept that connects humans, animals, plants, and the environment. Allergy 2021;00:1–4