Did you know about 3/4 of the worlds population is intolerant to lactose? And that humans are the only species that consumes milk in adulthood, as well as the milk from another animal? (healthline.com)
At the end of March, Aalap and I made a decision to cut dairy out of our lives. Meaning we cut out: milk, butter, cheese, etc…
No, we are not vegan. We eat eggs sporadically
Here’s how it all began:
Each and every time we went to the grocery store, Aalap would end up having 2-3 different kinds of cheese in our cart. Soon, at one point we had 10 types of cheeses in our refrigerator.
Aalap and I wanted to make some changes to our diet as we were not feeling our best ( bloated, uncomfortable, at times nauseous) after certain meals we were eating and but we couldn’t pinpoint any certain ingredient that would be causing us to feel this way.
Then two things happened:
- Aalap was sent a few videos of the dairy farms around America, which portrayed the treatment of cows and the horrific process they are put through to continuously produce milk.
- Dear friends of ours went vegan and said it was one of the best and easiest decisions they’ve made.
These two moments opened our eyes and we decided we wanted to cut dairy from our diet. So we cleaned out our refrigerator and had one last gulp of milk.
There are two MAIN reasons we feel strongly about our decision:
Treatment of Animals & Our Health.
Just like many of us, we think that the cows are treated with respect and given the best of treatment as they are selflessly providing us with milk. We imagine them grazing fields of green grass and living a beautiful life. Unfortunately, that is far from what is happening. Watching these documentaries was heart-wrenching and nauseating at the same time. Seeing how inhumane the treatment is towards these beautiful creatures was more than enough reason to take this decision.
Aalap & I are both vegetarians. Although we get questioned constantly about this, we’ve realized we don’t need to justify our reasonings to anyone. Us being vegetarian is culturally and now more than ever, morally linked.
It’s been challenging to have a conversation about our decision with folks who are adamant that milk is our ONLY source of calcium and without it, Aalap and I will have bad bones. When in actuality the hormones, peptides, antibiotics and so much more is way more harmful to your body.
Fun Fact: Calcium is found in beans/lentils, almonds, leafy greens, tofu, edamame, carrots, sweet potatoes, oranges, butternut squash, and SO much more!
Milk is the biggest culprit of the dairy products since it trickles into the rest of them. Unfortunately, we’ve been trained to think milk is healthy for us.
The milk from a cow is made for their calves, the same way women produce milk for babies.
Since March, not only have we felt better internally after eating but not to sound vain, we look better also!
Cutting out dairy means we cut out a lot of foods that contain dairy: ice cream, sour cream, coffee creamers, salad dressings, potato chips and many more. With this subtraction, we cut out many foods that are considered ‘inflammatory’. Consuming dairy products can lead to inflammation because human bodies are not very good at digesting their certain proteins. Lactose and casein are present in abundance in dairy products resulting in chronic inflammation.
All the hormones, antibiotics, peptides and other harmful ingredients in dairy products were having a direct effect on our skin. We were both having a hard time keeping our skin under control, we’d wake up with large pimples and redness around our cheek area. Now, we’ve both noticed a significant difference in how even our complexions is and the significant decrease in breakouts!
For both of us, we were able to shake some unnecessary pounds which have helped us feel lighter and more determined to stick to our mission. Not having dairy as ingredients has made our meals feel lighter and easier to digest.
Have we had slip-ups, of course. But it’s not intentional. We are trying to break a 27-year habit of eating dairy. It’s not going to happen overnight.
Stay tuned for some of our favorite dairy-swap-outs and other tricks/recipes we’ve used so far! We’d love to hear if you’re dairy-free, vegan, or just thinking about making a switch! – P