YOU CAN QUIT DIARY!
If you’d like to eliminate dairy, my fourstep guide will help you to do it over three to four weeks. Just stopping it altogether is best, much like ripping off a plaster in one go rather than easing it off and pulling out each individual hair in the proce
Cheese is delicious but it could be detrimental to your health
Let’s face it, dairy is delectable! Is there anyone who doesn’t enjoy it? That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s good for you. While some people appear to be fine on dairy products others just glance at them and their respiratory organs go beserk – they wheeze and get sinusitis – or they experience diarrhoea, cramps and vomiting. Still others appear to have no extreme symptoms yet are beset with an autoimmune disease or weight gain. You may not even be aware that dairy is contributing to your chronic health problems but as it is an inflammatory food type you will benefit significantly by giving it up. And don’t get me started on the growth hormones, oestrogens, antibiotics, steroids, and bioactive peptides that form in the gut as a result of milk ingestion and the protein betacellulin (which is linked to cancers). All of that, right there, is reason to stop.
Meanwhile, in many of us, dairy contributes to dysglycaemia (an imbalance in blood sugar levels), which leads to weight gain. Cut it out for a month and watch your water-retention problem disappear, moods improve and weight begin to drop. Plus, you don’t need to worry about your bones! The calcium in milk is poorly absorbed and bones are made out of so much more than calcium anyway. Calcium is abundant in our food, particularly leafy greens, nuts such as almonds, bone broth, chicken livers and sardines. If you decide to drop dairy you’ll still be ‘covered’ if you eat a healthy Paleo-style diet.
The dairy exception is real butter, which is a pure form of healthy fat. Few people experience adverse effects from good quality butter but if you find it is a problem use ghee – the protein is removed but all the goodness of butter remains.
There are studies ‘proving’ both sides of the argument as to whether dairy is good for you or not, so ultimately it’s an individual decision.
ITS ROLE IN INSULIN RESISTANCE
Perhaps the most important point about dairy, especially milk, is its insulinogenic (or insulin-stimulating) nature. Even though dairy products have a low glycaemic index they have a very high insulin index. This means they may not raise blood-glucose levels excessively but they do raise insulin levels disproportionately.
There are over 80 naturally occurring bovine hormones in milk to grow a calf into a cow. This is fine if you are a calf but what if you’re human? Many hormones, both natural and external, in dairy have the ability to dysregulate human hormones. Insulin-like growth factor #1 (IGF-1) is one such hormone, and it is now associated with breast and prostate cancer. An NCBI (National Center for Biotechnology Information) research paper concludes: ‘Epidemiological evidence is accumulating and suggests that the risk of cancers of the colon, pancreas, endometrium, breast and prostate are related to circulating levels of insulin, IGF-1, or both.’
If you want a little extra encouragement to give up milk you may want to consider the antibiotics that are used to fight infection in livestock, which then can make their way into milk and cheese if the producer doesn’t take care to ensure that the animal has gone through a drug withdrawal period. Antibiotics are also used to increase the weight of livestock; globally, more antibiotics are given to animals than are used to save human lives. Is it any wonder there is widespread antibiotic resistance? When we take in those antibiotics we may also gain weight.
The link between dairy and respiratory diseases such as asthma and chronic sinusitis is clear; it’s the most allergenic of all food types, causing excess mucus production, so it should be avoided by anyone with these conditions. Many skin conditions,
Don’t get me started on the growth hormones, oestrogens, antibiotics, steroids, and bioactive peptides that form in the gut as a result of milk ingestion and the protein betacellulin (which is linked to cancers).
such as teenage acne, also clear up very quickly when dairy products are discontinued.
The protease inhibitors present in dairy are thought to cause intestinal permeability or leaky gut syndrome, and people with bowel issues often notice vast improvements when they eliminate this food group. The proteins in milk are cross reactive with gluten, so their adverse effects are compounded. (Cross reactivity means that when you are allergic to the proteins in one food, you could also react to similar proteins found in another food.) Celiac-disease sufferers are strongly advised to eliminate dairy for this reason.
Around 65% of the world’s population is lactose intolerant and the figures for South Africa range between 60% and 80%. Lactose is digested and absorbed from the intestine but first has to be broken down into two basic sugars: glucose and galactose. Lactase, the enzyme needed to do this, is found in the cells that line the small intestine, right on the tips of the villi. We generally lose the ability to produce lactase efficiently when weaned. While some population groups continue to produce some lactase after weaning, many don’t.
Adults who could tolerate lactose when they were younger may develop an intolerance with symptoms, such as bloating, diarrhoea, flatulence, cramps, and vomiting, that increase with the amount of lactose consumed. However, fermented dairy, butter and ghee may still be tolerated. Don’t confuse lactose intolerance with milk allergy – this immune response to the proteins in cow’s milk is seen mainly in children.
Almond milk is a great alternative.