Death by Dairy
Hi Fit Fam,
As you may know I am looking to become a Vegan as of October 1st. As apart of my transition I have been doing a lot of research on the hazardous effect dairy has on our bodies and was shocked to find just how toxic it was.
The Huffington Post has published a phenominal article that summarizes a lot of my findings over the past couple weeks. The video featured in this article called “Dairy: 6 Reasons You Should Avoid It at All Costs”, is under 10 minutes long! I highly suggest if you don’t read my blog post or the Huffington Post article you at least watch this informative video. It discusses not only the harmful effects of consuming dairy but also explains why the food pyramid is constructed for our economies best interest and not our health’s.
The Food Pyramid Is Not In Your Best Interest
Before I dive into dairy, I would actually like to take a moment to briefly explain why our food guides are hazardous to our health
One thing you need to understand about the guidelines set out for us by the government is that, it is created by the same people who hold a stake in it. It is suggested that we drink 2-3 glasses of milk per day because the ones making that recommendation work for the dairy industry. It isn’t because it is in our best interest, nor is it because dairy is scientifically good for our health.
Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Eat Dairy
1. Dairy and Disease:
If you have not had a chance to read The China Study, I highly suggest you do so. It explains why there is an epidemic of poor health in North American societies. It also suggest that dairy is directly linked to a number of diseases including Cardiovascular Disease, Osteoporosis and Cancer.
Although there has been some recent evidence to support that dairy does not contribute to cardiovascular disease –in studies done by Dairy Nutrition or The Dairy Council –I am more inclined to side with those who don’t have a conflict of interest in the matter.
Dairy products –particularly the richer ones such as cheese, ice cream, butter or yogurt –contribute to a significant amount of cholesterol and fat to our diets. The type of fat found in these dairy products is Saturated Fat, which is known for raising bad cholesterol levels. This type of fat is only found in animal products or processed foods. The other type of fat found in cheese is Trans Fat, which is even worse. Trans Fats have been chemically created in a lab and then put into your foods to increase their shelf life –you got it, it’s a fatty preservative. Trans Fats have also been linked to raising your bad cholesterol count.
Contrary to popular belief, dairy is actually bad for your bones! The Harvard Nurses Health Study, showed that consuming dairy actually increased your risk of bone fracture. “Dairy can actually increase your risk of fracture by 50%” says Mark Hyman MD. This happens because milk actually erodes bone-making cells. The China Study’s evidence pointed out that “the countries with the lowest rates of dairy and calcium consumption (such as those in Africa and Asia) have the lowest rates of osteoporosis.” (Huffington Post)
Studies have shown that dairy products do increase ones chance of prostate, ovarian and breast cancers, but there is also studies that suggest that it helps fight against bowel cancer Regardless, the evidence in the China Study still blew me away. They discovered that dairy, specifically the protein in dairy called casein, is a heavy carcinogen –yes that means cancer causing! “Author of the book T. Colin Campbell, PhD., grew up on a dairy farm, so he regularly enjoyed a wholesome glass of milk. Not anymore. In multiple, peer-reviewed animal studies, researchers discovered that they could actually turn the growth of cancer cells on and off by raising and lowering doses of casein” (WellandGoodNYC)
2. Dairy is an Addiction
Another point raised by The China Study is that casein, other than being carcinogenic, is also highly addictive! When our bodies try and break down casein during the digestive process, casomorphins a.k.a “morphine” is created. (HappyHerbivore). This sends waves of please and happiness through our body, and like any other drug, we become addicted. By fueling this addiction we are only contributing to our own poor health.
3. Dairy is not Ethical
One of the main reasons I am looking to stop consuming dairy is for the sole fact that dairy cows lead miserable lives and eventually become apart of the meat industry when their milking days are over. By not participating in the dairy industry you are saving the lives of future dairy cows across North America. The slogan, “I think therefore I am Vegan” is nothing but the truth. My moral conscious has caught up to me and I no longer feel good about choosing to eat dairy. Even at this moment I am regretting that toxic slice of (delicious) Mozzarella.
Thankfully, we live in a society where dairy substitutes are easily accessible. Below are a number of substitutes that I have tried and enjoyed:
- Soy Milk –I like Silk brand’s Unsweetened Organic soy milk, great in cereal, smoothies or just by itself
- Rice Milk –It is an acquired taste but Rice Dream’s Unsweetened is good for cooking or baking purposes
- Almond Milk –I like Silk brand’s True Almond Unsweetened, I like Almond Milk with my oatmeal
- Coconut Milk –I like Silk brand’s True Coconut Unsweetened, amazing for cooking curry or in making smoothies tropical and cream
- Soy Cheese –The Daiya brand is great for all soy cheese, especially the shredded and cream cheese
- Nutritional Yeast –tastes like parmesan cheese
Never ever buy the Veggie Slices brand; they use casein in their products.
- Vegan Butter –Earth Balance Natural Buttery Spread tastes exactly like butter and is 100% vegan
Lastly, I just want to note that there is plenty of scientific evidence to fight for both sides of the diary industry. If you would like to find out where you stand I would suggest you do some investigating and soul searching of your own to find what suits your personal and ethical needs.
I hope this article has helped you in some way with your own health and fitness journey. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to email me: firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d be more than happy to discuss any comments or questions, (or even corrections, cause god knows I’m not perfect) you have.
Stay tuned and stay hungry.
Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine- Ask the Expert: Dairy Products
Nutrition MD –Understanding the Problems with Dairy Products