Why should I follow a dairy free diet?
We have grown up with the idea that milk is essential to our health since it represents a great calcium source but it is not totally true. It’s true that milk is crucial on the first years of life, but not anymore when we are grown ups, producing digestion and even allergy and intolerance problems. Drinks, cheese, yoghurts, butter, ice creams… we consume a lot of milk every day and this may be prejudicial for our health. Why to follow a dairy free diet?
The effects of dairy products on the health
According to many allergy specialists, natural healers and medical doctors, we may have gone too far. Consuming large quantities of dairy products has had many negative effects on our health such as:
- Digestive disorders and stomach aches often settle down when dairy is reduced. This is because casein, the major protein in milk, forms indigestible sticky curds in the stomach, which then line the intestinal walls.
- Pre-Menstrual symptoms such as bloating, headaches, irritability, confusion and cramps, often improve significantly on a dairy free diet (see The Pre-Menstrual Syndrome Self Help Book, Susan Lark M.D.).
- Allergies of all kinds are often benefited by non-dairy diets; chronic sinus conditions, food allergies, environmental allergies. This may be because the by-products of milk digestion create large quantities of mucus, which leads to sluggish organ function, lethargy and fatigue.
- Hyperactive or chronically fatigued kids are quite often allergic to dairy products according to William Crook M.D., who has worked with thousands of allergic children.
- According to scientific research, breast cancer incidence is much higher in countries which consume a lot of dairy foods. The high fat content in dairy can cause hormonal changes (by encouraging over-growth of oestrogen-producing bacteria in the intestine) that are not only linked to breast cancer, but also to early onset of menstruation and late menopause.
How to reduce milk intake
Experiment with a 2 week trial dairy free diet to discover if dairy is a factor in your current health problems. You may experience increased energy, weight loss, and more mental clarity. Sinus conditions may improve, but don’t be surprised if you experience more discharge of mucus. Your body may be signalling you that it’s glad to have a chance to get rid of dairy caused mucus build-up.
To cut down on dairy products gradually, try eliminating commercial whole milk products and substituting smaller quantities of low-fat raw milk, cheese, or yoghurt. These are less likely to contain harmful antibiotics and penicillin routinely used in large commercial dairies.
Balanced dairy free diet
The consumption of cow’s milk can be replaced by eating vegetable milks like oat milk, almond milk or rice milk. We may also use some soy products like tofu or vegetable cooking cream.
To increase non-dairy sources of calcium in your healthy diet, eat at least 1 serving a day of dark leafy greens (kale, collards, watercress, savoy cabbage, pak-choy, turnip greens, parsley…). For even more concentrated calcium, include seaweeds often.
Following a dairy free diet can permit you to feel way better, and to eliminate many health disorders. It is definitely worth trying!