First, let me begin by saying that I am a hypocrite. Though I would like to, I've had little success in completely denying dairy products from my diet. I'm a sucker for a frothy cappuccino, creamy Greek yogurt, melted cheese on anything, a creamy French blue, don't even get in stated on cheesecake, and, of course, I can't live without my whey protein powder.
But in theory, I hate diary and don't think any of us should be eating it.
I know, I know. Those "Got Milk?" mustache ads are cute and endearing. There is something about dairy that is comforting and many of us have a very emotional connection to it. I've encountered time and time again that people are very resistant to the thought that it might be bad for us. For so long we've been told it's great for our bones, and is part of a balanced, healthy diet.
But there must be a reason that just about every diet geared towards detoxing, weight-loss and anti-inflamation recommend cutting the diary. I know I completely cut it when I'm trying to shed a couple. And it is any coincident that about 75% of us have some kind of intolerance to lactose?[caption id="attachment_338" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Tempting.[/caption]
Here's a few facts to get you thinking:
Did you know we are the only animal that drinks another's milk (except for domesticated animals who we've taught to as well)?
Beyond that, we are the only animal that drinks milk (albeit not our mother's) beyond infancy? It's uncomfortable to think about, but could you possibly image still drinking your mum's milk? Why then do we think it's ok to drink cow's milk?
Milk from a cow is meant for calves. It's designed to grow meek baby cows of 40 kgs or so into adult cows weighing about 750kg in the course of about a year.
This factoid particularly skeezes me out: diary milk is the bodily fluids of another animal. Nah thanks, I no longer want that cheesecake.
Try as we might deny it, It's simply not natural that we consume cow's milk.
And then there's the issue of hormones and pesticides. It' so secret that industrially processed cattle is subject to an array of growth hormones, antibiotics and exposed to pesticides. To reduced costs, cattle are often fed corn and soy over what they would naturally eat - fresh grass. This alerted diet makes them sick. So they're given more drugs. How can good, clean milk come out of something like that?[caption id="attachment_340" align="alignleft" width="300"] Fantasy.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_341" align="alignleft" width="300"] Reality.[/caption]
I'm a big believer that we should try to eat food closet to it's natural state -- barring the cooking process. Milk may indeed be a highly nutritious food (for baby cows, I must once again reiterate) but by the time it gets to us it's been pasteurized, likely stripped of it's natural fat, preserved, processed and packaged. Far from fresh milk, it's more like fat solids suspended in watery goo.
The Dairy lobby has been very effective at spreading the idea that diary products are necessary for calcium which in turn fortifies bones, reduces fractures and the occurrence of osteoporosis. But latest research shows that the calcium present in diary products is not readily absorbed by the body and may even cause calcium to leach out of our bones!
In areas around the world where diary consumption is low, like Asia and Africa, there is a lower occurrence of osteoporosis than is milk-loving countries. If that wasn't scary enough, diary consumptions seems elevate one's risk for developing prostrate, ovarian and breast cancer.
Nutritionists recommend that we should instead seek our calcium from kale, broccoli, leafy greens and beans.
And one of the best ways to strengthen bones is to get regular exercise especially weight-baring and muscle-strenghtening exercise.
Is it time you reconsidered dairy? I am once again, doing just that.