So many people are becoming more conscious of how dairy affects the way they feel. There are many points people are becoming more conscious of about dairy. Dairy is a good source of calcium but it's not the best thing for everyone. There are many conflicting views on the subject. I'll offer one and then a few tips to help you give a dairy-free life a shot!
Casein (the main protein found in dairy) can be an irritant to the digestive system. It’s common to be lactose-sensitive or intolerant, many people experience thickened mucous leading to congestion. Dairy is not the be all-end all of calcium and strong bones. It is highly acidic. Our bodies are happiest with a neutral ph balance between acid and alkaline. Not too extreme one way or the other. Dairy and most other animal products are acid producing, which makes the body draw from its alkaline reserves of calcium, magnesium and potassium to restore balance.
There are many plant based sources for calcium that are more bio-available for your body (see resources.)
Whatever the reason you choose to remove dairy from your diet, it can be a challenge. Here are 8 tips to help you in that pursuit.
1.Replace dairy foods you’re used to with similar foods.
They're easy to find in natural food markets but be cautious about the more processed foods. There are many soy as well as soy free choices. Be cautious about ingredients and chemical ingredients. The strategy of replacement foods may end up being a temporary bridge to the totally unprocessed way of eating.
2. Make it a habit, try a streak!
A streak is a method of tracking a chosen activity every day for 30 days to make it a habit. You check off each day to create the streak. Don’t break the chain though, or it will start over again. There are plenty of apps that track streaks, or you can or simply use a month view calendar and put an X on your successful days. The act of filling in each day is uber-satisfying. You can streak each day you are dairy-free!
3. Invest in a high powered blender.
It is a big help in a plant-based kitchen. You can use it for so many things including green smoothies, ice cream and sorbets with frozen fruit, hot soup from raw veggies, nut butters, nut milk, plant based cheeses from different nuts (especially cashews.)
4. Compile an arsenal of creamy delicious recipes.
Include both healthy staples and creamy foods you might turn to in the midst of a craving for dairy. HERE is a recipe for the best comfort food in the world courtesy of the Detoxinista blog! It's a decadent treat and I use this "cheeze" sauce for a lot of other things!
5.) Take a cooking class and watch cooking videos.
Local natural food markets often offer classes in plant-based cooking. They also may promote local classes, and also look on bulletin boards for independent information. YouTube is a rich source of inspiration that will both teach techniques and give you ideas. There is much information for beginners to experienced cooks, there’s always something to learn.
6.) Read vegan food blogs.
They are a rich source of recipes to try, cooking techniques and other interesting, relevant posts. Don’t forget the search bar, search out dairy substitutes, specific ingredients and anything food you’re craving (like vegan caesar salad dressing.) Some of my favorites: Oh She Glows, Vegan Yum Yum, Minimalist Baker, Vegan Richa, Delicously Ella... Just search Vegan blogs!
7.) Prepare vegan "cheeze" sauce in advance to drizzle on veggies.
Experiment with a few different ones, decide on your favorite and have it on hand to drizzle over vegetables. There are both cashew and nut-free versions. This is especially helpful with children. Here is an arsenal of recipes, I especially love the "parmesan."
Try vegan creamy frozen treats when you have an ice cream craving. There’s nothing worse than feeling deprived of something you love. There are many good brands of ice “cream” out there, and are made with different base ingredients like cashew, rice, coconut, almond and soy. THIS is a decadent treat from one of my favorite blogs, Oh She Glows (and you should check out her cookbooks, Oh She Glows, and Oh She Glows everyday!
Expand your horizons. Don’t focus on what you can’t have. Instead, get excited about your new food journey!
For plant based dairy sources:
Heidi Ho cheese:
Daiya shredded vegan cheese:
Follow your Heart brand vegan cheese:
Kelly is a Certified Nutrition & Wellness Coach, Holistic Wellness Practitioner and Certified Crystal Healer.
She is here to help you feel comfortable in your body and BE-you-tiful through body positive outlook and making permanent changes in your health, weight and life!
Yes, it's possible to be body positive and also release the weight, depression, anxiety and unhealthy habits to feel confident, healthy and fabulous!