I’ve heard a lot of controversial things about dairy, although I don’t think there is a lot of research to support it. I recently cut out dairy for about a year while nursing. I felt good and dropped some weight, although I’m not sure if it was the dairy or just cutting out a food group and therefore decreasing calories without really thinking about it. What are your thoughts on dairy?
Personally, I always found dairy a little weird, even when I still ate/drank it. I mean, how hungry was the first person to look at a cow udder and think “that looks edible”? The first thing I noticed when I intentionally avoided dairy was that I seemed to be able to taste and smell other things better. And I didn’t get as phlegm-y when I got sick (not so much thick snot in my head).
As time went on, I found that I couldn’t consume any dairy without getting a full on upset stomach and gastrointestinal issues. If you can lose the ability to digest it, how good was it for you to eat it in the first place?
Dairy foods provide a myriad of nutrients not as easily provided in other foods. For instance, the calcium in dairy is more “available” to the body than from any other food. The saturated fat content of whole milk (4% milk fat) products is a concern. For this reason I suggest 2%, 1% or non-fat dairy products. If inadequate lactase enzyme is a concern, as Shawn suggests regarding lactose intolerance, there a now several products (e.g. Lactaid) which have dealt with difficulty metabolizing lactose.
Not my favorite food source but sometimes I do eat cheese. With all of the controversial information out there regarding antibiotics and hormones that farmers give to their animals, it’s probably safe to look for more organic farms that raise cows, goats and sheep. Beyond that if you are not allergic to dairy products and/or have a medical condition that would not allow you to eat them, it’s probably ok to consume them.
I understand that some consider it controversial, but I don’t think so at all. I say dump dairy (and not just because I’m a vegan and lactose intolerant).
But, here’s a link for more information from the Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine based out of D.C.: Health Concerns About Dairy Products http://www.pcrm.org/pdfs/health/faq_dairy.pdf
It is a personal decision, however I think there is one thing everyone should consider before consuming dairy. Know where it is coming from. The closer to home we can buy our food, the better. The less processed, the better. There is information out there about the kind of cows we have here in America, and how, the way a certain protein in the milk breaks down, it may be strongly linked to many autoimmune diseases. There are many great non-dairy sources of calcium for those who desire it. We are conditioned to think we need milk and dairy, but it isn’t so.