Ever since I was a kid, milk has always been one of my favorite beverages. It’s not just milk and cookies that I love, which I do, but I also love a good glass of milk with dinner.
One of my favorite snacks is a bowl of cereal, with more milk than cereal! I’m always a little jealous of the winner of the Indy 500 who gets to chug the quart of milk at the end of the race. Not everyone can enjoy milk like I can. Lactose intolerance and dairy allergies are common nowadays, and grocery stores now have many dairy alternatives for cheese, yogurt, and sour cream.
Many Americans are choosing to go dairy-free for other reasons besides lactose intolerance. Eliminating dairy from their diet, people report having fewer problems with chronic congestion, ear infections, digestive issues, and acne.
Some people may just do an experiment and try going dairy-free for a month to see what results they may get. Although we all think that milk is healthy, did you know that almost all of the milk’s carbohydrates come from sugars called lactose?
Also, milk products can be high in saturated fat and may contain as much saturated fat as ground beef. Another disadvantage is that milk does not provide dietary fiber or iron.
Now, we all love a good cheesy pizza and ice cream, so how are we supposed to give up our favorite foods? Going dairy-free just might be too much of a sacrifice!
What you may not notice is that there are substitutes for almost everything today. Just take a look at a few alternatives:
• Butter: Earth Balance and Soy Garden have some very palatable substitutes
• Yogurt: Whole Soy may be the tastiest option for soy yogurt
• Milk: Try rice, almond, coconut and soy milk to see which type you like best
• Cheese: Look for Daiya, can be purchased in shredded form and melts perfectly on pizzas
• Ice Cream: So Delicious, Tofutti, Turtle Mountain and Double Rainbow are all tasty alternatives to dairy ice cream
• Sour cream, cream cheese, and mayonnaise: Tofutti and Follow Your Heart have non-dairy versions of these traditional condiments
• Coffee creamer: So Delicious and Silk make such a good creamer substitute
If you do want to try going dairy-free, why not just try replacing a few dairy items at a time? There’s nothing to say that you have to go cold turkey.
Whatever you decide to do about dairy, you should talk to your doctor to make sure that your new diet provides all the vitamins and nutrients that you need.
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