I used to think that “cows milk was never meant for humans it is meant for baby cows” was an over dramatic tag line invented by radical vegans. It probably was. That doesn’t change the fact that, if you want to feel well, energetic, lighter and glowing (as opposed to feeling slightly off, sluggish, damp and heavy, and pallor) you really should try to eliminate lactose from your diet.
Let’s be clear – I have nothing against dairy farmers. They are doing a job, contributing to the economy, supporting innovation of flow-through markets, and some of them are even educating the masses. Heck I grew up on a farm, I have the utmost respect for farmers.
Eliminating dairy has nothing to do with dairy farmers.
It has everything to do with the facts that:
- lactose is a sugar, sugar is inflammatory;
- the western diet has evolved to the extent that dairy has become a staple food;
- our bodies were never designed to consume/process dairy at the rate we expect them to do today;
- cows milk contains bovine growth hormone designed SPECIFICALLY through evolution to help a calf grow muscle big and fast.
The science is fast catching up to the idea that dairy hinders our health and wellness. If you want to learn more listen to Dr Neil Barnard or this TEDX talk which has a lot of good researched facts or the stuff in this Dr Michael Greger talk. And there is more out there if you take a look.
Even calves are weaned or self wean after 9 months because they are strong enough to no longer require the inert growth hormones and sugars in cows milk that allow them to grow in size and survive their first few tenuous months.
I cannot think of another mammal that consumes milk for the entirety of its life. Why do we think it is healthy for us? It’s not.
So if you want to feel well, then start on the route to eliminate dairy, or if that seems too drastic why not try reducing it significantly and see how you feel. That’s how I started and I felt so great without milk I decided to try going without cheese too. And do you know the biggest thing I noticed … ENERGY! I had stacks of it. Within a week I noticed the energy. Even at the end of the day. Even at the end of the week! The next biggest changes were to my skin, it felt soft instead of rough and it looked dewey instead of red and inflamed.
I know how hard it is as a Mum with hungry mouths to feed to make it through the day without dairy. But if it’s important to you, you have to try, and you need only do it a little at a time.
Here are some tips on how I eliminated it:
- find a good alternative milk recipe you can enjoy. The hardest part for me was giving up my cups of tea, so now I make almond milk and this creamy recipe is good enough for me not to notice too much that milk is missing. If you don’t like this one, keep trying and testing until you find one that works for you;
- stop buying cheese – simple – instead buy the veggies that are on special and bake them in a batch with oils and flavour to use in salads, lunches and dinners. Research alternative cheeses, here’s an awesome book that could help you experiment;
- be clear on your motives. Mine were cancer risk reduction, weight loss, getting rid of the sluggish feeling I’d get whenever I consumed dairy, and lastly my love for animals and a niggling sadness I’d feel in the back of my mind every time I ate an animal product but put aside because it was easier. Your motives will be different probably but whatever they are, stick strongly to them, be invested in your choice, write them down and stick them on the fridge if need be; and
- don’t be too hard on yourself! Cut yourself a break if it’s easier just to make pasta and cheese for the family’s dinner. Use it as an opportunity to notice how your body and stomach feel or react.
So there you go. Another wisdom in our path to wellness and health.
Let me know why you think or how you go, I’d love to connect.