For Arabs in the Middle East, camel milk is a source of food, drink and medicine. The medicinal properties of camel milk are a result of the camel’s pasture, grazing on certain plants that have been considered by Arabs as a remedy for diseases they encounter. Among pastoral nomadic population in Asia and Africa, almost all their food is obtained from grain, mostly wheat and barley grown in areas that are more in the possession of each tribal/clan territory. Some of their food is also obtained from wild plants, herd animals, mostly sheep and goats, with some cows and camels. Some plants on which camel graze tend to scent or flavor their milk. It is a common practice to lead camels to eat certain plants in order to use the milk for specific medicinal purpose in treating a wide range of diseases, including cancer. Argument: The paper argues that most of the medical properties and constituents of the camel milk are a product of the nature of the plants on which camels are pastured. Research methods: The data for this research are derived from a broad study of camel milk and traditional medicine conducted over the course of two decades in the Middle East. The research was further expanded and substantiated through the author’s interviews in the field - using both structured interviews (Interview Schedule) and unstructured interviews (Interview Guide) - with camel breeders, community leaders, governmental and non-governmental representatives, healers, and patients. The research included men and women of different ages, and spanned a variety of groups. Additional insights and data contributing to the research were gathered in a review of professional journals, archival and documentary materials (published and unpublished).
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