I was sent this article from Equestrian Life (Thank you). It was written by a woman in the UK. When she states to feed ‘double cream’, she assumes we know what that means…
Well, not so, at least for me.
You see, at first, I was confused because I had no idea what Double Cream was and how I could acquire it. Truthfully, I still doubt you can get the full fledged, 48% fat ‘double cream’ like they sell in the UK – here… but I have been told that you can find something labeled “double cream” at Trader Joes, Whole Foods and I also found it on this link from Amazon. And, if you have a local dairy, ask them if they could provide for you 48% double cream.
Here is the definition of double cream:
Double cream is like whipping cream. The butterfat content of double cream is around 48%, which makes it less fatty than clotted cream, but more dense than American whipping or heavy cream.
Double cream is a dairy product often found in Britain and Europe. It is extremely dense, rich cream that whips easily and can be used in an assortment of desserts and foods. Working with the thick cream can be difficult, as it separates when beaten too much and has a tendency to be very stiff. Generally, this product is called for in British recipes, while other types of cream are used in the Americas and other parts of the world.
The butterfat content of double cream is around 48%, which makes it less fatty than clotted cream, but more dense than American whipping or heavy cream. Single cream has an even lower fat content and is similar to half and half. The high fat content of double cream makes it an excellent addition to hot foods, since the fat acts as a carrier, making it less likely to separate. For this reason, it is often used in things like creme caramel or in hot sauces.
When milk is initially collected at the dairy, it is centrifuged to extract various products. Originally, milk was allowed to stand and separate, but centrifuging is much faster and safer. Prolonged centrifuging will result in higher butterfat, creating double cream. Unfortunately, the high butterfat can also be a problem, as is the case when this cream is whipped too long and starts to turn into butter.
The issue is that in most states in the USA, it is illegal to sell non-pasturized anything. Double cream is non-pasturized.
(I did contact the author of the below article, and I asked her what she has told readers from the US about how to acquire double cream… I will let you know if I hear back.)
OK, so, if you can get your hands on double cream when you need it, here is a very, very interesting finding out of the UK…
If I had known about this during Mama Tess’ life, I would have tried it for sure! Couldn’t hurt, could help!
A VERY INTERESTING STUDY FOR LAMINITIS OUT OF THE UK!
By Susan Rogerson
The main laminitis season is here – the time when many horse owners start monitoring grass growth and checking their horse’s feet for signs of the dreaded disease.
I used to be one of those people. Now I no longer worry because I have found a simple, natural and highly effective treatment which stops the disease in its tracks – full-fat dairy cream. This might seem like a bizarre quack remedy, but the science behind it is compelling. My theory is that it works as an anti-inflammatory by lowering levels of prostaglandin E2 and leukotriene B4. I also believe it lowers thromboxane – a powerful vasoconstrictor. This theory is backed up by other published evidence. I have found it far more effective than bute, which often doesn’t work and can make the condition worse.
It was after a previous laminitic horse failed to respond to conventional veterinary treatment that I began to look for an alternative. After much research, close observation of my own horses and making connections to things I’d read about cheese, I formulated the dairy cream theory. Sadly, this horse died before I quite figured it out, but less than two years later my remaining horse got laminitis. He became my first guinea pig.
He was Obel grade three and reluctant to walk. I stabled him and fed him double cream in a bran feed with ad lib hay. The following morning he had already improved slightly. By day three he was walking easily. He was allowed out to graze for a short period each day and when I opened the stable door on the fifth day he trotted into the field with just a slight limp. I then turned him out 24/7 and he was completely sound within a few weeks. I didn’t give him any drugs or cryotherapy and his grass intake was only restricted for a few days.
The treatment was not completely without problems though. Initially, I fed the bran dry as I thought the combination of wet bran, lush spring grass and cream might give him diarrhoea. I also fed his usual broad-spectrum vitamin and mineral supplement. His droppings were normal but he did suffer mild tympanitic colic (gas). He also had fluid retention, drank twice his normal volume of water and urinated copiously. These side-effects were later alleviated by feeding the bran as a damp (but not soggy) mash and omitting the supplement.
After a second bout of laminitis that same year which was again successfully treated with double cream, my horse became sound and remained so for the next eight years. Then, in spring 2012, he had a third attack – the worst ever. Again the double cream worked – five days later he had only a slight limp. A friend then tried the cream on her pony, also with favourable results.
The full results have now been published in the journal ‘Open Science Repository Veterinary Medicine’, which is available open access. This paper includes a full discussion of my findings, along with references which support my theory. And since publication, two more horses have been successfully treated with double cream.
Unfortunately, despite my best efforts, the veterinary establishment is not interested. They have dismissed the idea completely without even bothering to test it out. So I am left in the frustrating position of having found a potential cure for laminitis, but having no way of validating it. Of course, that needn’t stop other horse owners from trying it out for themselves if they so choose. If it works on other horses then eventually the vets will have to sit up and take notice.
But here I must add a caveat. Laminitis is a serious and complex disease. If anyone wants to try the double cream treatment, but is inexperienced in dealing with the disease, or has any doubts at all, then it would be best to try it under the supervision of a vet – one who is open-minded enough not to dismiss the treatment out of hand – if such a creature exists!
Please also remember it is your decision. I am not a vet; I cannot legally (nor would want to) offer specific treatment advice for individual animals. All I can tell you is what worked for my horse and three others. Owners must decide for themselves whether double cream is an appropriate treatment for their own horse.
But if anyone does try it, please send me the results. If it cures enough horses then perhaps it will be accepted as a valid alternative to the current, hopelessly inadequate treatment.
My own horse has been laminitis free for over a year now. There is no guarantee that he won’t have another attack, but if he does I won’t be unduly worried. I’ll just put him back on the double cream.
For me, the fear and dread associated with laminitis has gone. It is my biggest hope now that other horses might also benefit, and that laminitis will lose its deadly grip over all of us.
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