Dairy. Probably one of the biggest subjects I am asked about. Why can’t I have cheese? Isn’t yogurt good for gut health? What about calcium? These are all great questions and valid.

Dairy is an incredibly controversial and sensitive subject with our clients. Americans love their cheese and have always been told to drink milk with their meals. Calcium is definitely an important part of bone health and is found in many dairy products. In reality, it is found in greater amounts in kale(all leafy greens), salmon, and even more in almond milk!

Dairy and the way it is processed causes a systemic inflammatory reaction in about 80% of humans. Our bodies have a hard time digesting it and many people are lactose intolerant and don’t even know it. Because cow’s milk is hard to digest (the cream rises to the top) it causes digestion issues that include bloating, stomach upset, diarrhea and more. It almost always causes an allergic response in one way or another. If you have redness around your nose and
across your sinuses, that’s a good indication you may be allergic.

Can’t stay away? Try goat’s milk or sheep’s milk for better digestibility. It is naturally homogenized-meaning the fat is evenly distributed through the milk making it easier on the gut. Feta and goat cheese would be a better cheese option.

Plant based is better. Anytime you can consume something from a plant, you are adding valuable nutrients to your diet. Almond milk, coconut milk and even pea protein milk substitutes are a great way to get that craveable creaminess without the inflammatory response. Daiya brand cheeses are also a great cheese substitute and there are fantastic coconut milk based ice creams to satisfy your sweet tooth.

When asked the one thing I would never put back in my diet- it would definitely be the conventional dairy. I have seen so many lives changed and people coming back saying “I had no idea I wouldn’t even miss it!”

Try substituting one item at a time in your fridge for a plant based choice. Watch your waistline shrink, your bone health improve and your joint pain improve.

For your health-
Allison Stapleton