New Delhi: The latest study by the Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI), a premier institute in the country, has concluded that fresh cow urine contains harmful bacteria, making it unfit for human consumption.

The peer-reviewed research carried out on urine samples of cows and bulls has found at least 14 types of harmful bacteria, including the presence of Escherichia coli bacterium, which is commonly associated with stomach infections in humans.

“Statistical analysis of 73 urine samples of cows, buffaloes, and humans suggest that antibacterial activity in buffalo urine was far more superior than cows. The urine of buffalo was significantly more effective on bacteria like S Epidermidis and E Rhapontici,” Bhoj Raj Singh, who led the study, told the Times of India.

Singh, who heads the epidemiology department at the institute, carried out the research along with three of his PhD students between June 2022 and November 2022 on three types of cows, namely Sahiwal, Tharparkar and Vindavani (cross breed), from local dairy farms. Even samples from humans and buffaloes were considered for the study. He noted that a “sizeable proportion of urine samples from apparently healthy individuals carry potentially pathogenic bacteria”.

While highlighting that there is a widespread belief that ‘distilled’ cow urine, as opposed to fresh cow urine, does not have infectious bacteria, he said the research on the same is still on. However, he noted that it is cannot be generalised that cow urine has anti-bacterial properties.

Meanwhile, a former director of IVRI, R.S. Chauhan, questioned the research. “I have been researching cow urine for 25 years and we have found that distilled cow urine improves the immunity of humans and helps against cancer and Covid. This particular research was not done on distilled urine samples which we recommend people to actually consume,” Chauhan told TOI

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