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Acidophilus Milk And Its Importance


Acidophilus milk is a sour milk product that has been allowed to ferment under conditions that favour the growth and development of a large number of Lactobacillus acidophilus organisms. This acidophilus milk is considered as a probiotic since it aids in the well being of the consumer. Acidophilus milk differs from Indian dahi or curd in that the milk used in the preparation and the types of microorganisms involved are different. The final products differ from curd in body, texture, consistency, flavour, chemical composition and in antibacterial activities.

Utility of acidophilus milk

Products of mixed fermentation such as acidophilus yeast milk, being rich in alcohol and carbon dioxide, excite the respiratory and central nervous system. This improves the process of oxidation and reduction in the organism and hence there is an increase in the oxygen flow to the lungs. In the erstwhile Soviet Union, acidophilus yeast milk is widely used in treating tuberculosis.

The recent emphasis on feeding Lactobacilli is attributed to the side effects of antibiotics. Antibiotics hurt all the viable intestinal microorganisms (desirable or pathogenic) and cause intestinal discomforts manifested by flatulence and diarrhoea. Colonization of L. acidophilus in the intestines accelerates the return to normalcy of intestinal microflora. A Romanian strain of L. acidophilus is claimed to have been developed for the treatment of gastrointestinal disorders but it also helps in the improvement of general vigour and health.

It is reported that acidophilus milk product combined with chemotherapeutic preparations can also be used effectively for several diseases such as typhoid, paratyphoid, osteomyelitis, pneumonia, migraine and urological infections. Experiments have revealed that the body weight of a child or animal increases when fed with milk containing acidophilus organisms.


The acidophilus milk containing Lactobacillus acidophilus differ in the type of starter culture and milk used for their preparation. Acidophilus sour milk, as the name indicates, is a sour milk beverage made out of standardized milk by acidifying it with pure culture of acidophilus rods. Milk cultures of L. acidophilus have the therapeutic value but do not possess the buttery acetaldehyde flavour of the regular fermented milk such as curd and yoghurt.

· The milk meant for preparation of acidophilus milk is standardized to 3.5% stout and 8.5% SNF content.

· The standardized milk is sterilized and cooled to 40°C.

· The milk is then inoculated with 24 hours ancient pure culture of L. acidophilus at the rate of 2-3%.

· It is filled into clean glass or plastic containers (200 ml volume) and incubated at 40°C for 8 hours.

· The acidophilus milk is then cooled and stored at 5°C till it is consumed.

The acidophilus milk thus obtained is sour with 1 to 1.25% lactic acid and pH 3.7 – 4.0. The product should contain more than 2000-3000 million viable L. acidophilus organisms per ml, which possess satisfactory antibiotic effect against E. coli as well as other pathogenic and non-pathogenic undesirable bacteria present in the intestinal tract. The viability of the organism is of primary importance in the use of the acidophilus milk. The acidophilus milk can be preserved up to a week, below 5°C.

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