Why going dairy free is good for you

Decrease your risk for chronic disease:

Making the choice to give up dairy products, will result in reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and most other chronic diseases.

You might want to eliminate additional bad saturated fats (such as those in non- grass-fed beef and full-fat pork for example) to keep your heart in the best shape possible. “Saturated fat and dietary cholesterol have been associated with these chronic illnesses for decades, and did you know that one of the most common cause of them in the modern diet is cheese.” Dairy may be correlated to certain cancers. “Dairy consumption has also been linked via various researches to hormone-related cancers such as ovarian and prostate, and surprisingly, it has also been linked in some studies to an increase in the rate of bone fractures. One of the main concerns of osteoporosis. Another result to our dependence on dairy products such as cream and cheeses can create unbalanced diets, that may have a limited range of nutrients.”

Reduce your risk for diabetes: 

Thanks to the trends on cutting fat, the majority of the dairy products we encounter these days are either reduced-fat, skim, fat-free, 1%, or any other processed variation on what came out of the cow in the first place. What we hear now is that low-fat dairy is bad for you. In fact, the more low-fat dairy products you choose, the higher your risk of diabetes. This is according to a 2015 study of close to 27,000 people in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The main reason may be that manufacturers replace the missing fat with different types of sugars or other artificial flavours, making their dairy products diabetes-delivery systems. If your goal is to cut down on calories and fat, choosing the low-fat dairy way is certainly not the way to go.

Cancer prevention:

Numerous research studies have shown a direct correlation between dairy intake and several hormone-related cancers. In fact, strong ties have been identified between milk consumption and both ovarian and prostate cancers. One very large study showed that women who consumed just 1 or more servings of skim or low-fat milk daily had a 32% higher risk of developing any ovarian cancer and a 69% higher risk of serous ovarian cancer when compared to women who consumed 3 or less servings per month. Another cohort study showed that men with the highest dietary intake of dairy foods were 2.2 times more likely to develop prostate cancer than men with the lowest intake of dairy foods.

Your exposure to added antibiotics and hormones will be reduced:

Nowadays we can say that antibiotics are given in mass quantities to cows to help prevent various infections. Some serious concerns has been raised over the consumption of these antibiotics through the milk products and antibiotic resistance. Quick mention back to the cancers section, we find two primary sources of hormones in our milk: BGH (Bovine Growth Hormone), a natural occurring hormone in cows that stimulates the production IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor-1), and the synthetic version, rBGH, used in conventional dairy farming to help stimulate milk production, which further increases the levels of IGF-1. The consumption of cow’s milk has been shown to increase the serum level of IGF-1 in humans by 10%. The consequence of higher levels of IGF-1 in humans, has been linked to a real increase in the risk of colon, breast, lung and prostate cancers. Thankfully the dairy-free milk alternatives do not contain added antibiotics or hormones, as they are plant-based.

Weight loss:

For those who are dairy intolerant and have had issues with low body weight, a milk-free diet can actually help them to absorb nutrients and potentially gain healthy weight. But for the rest of the population, weight loss is a real possibility with the dairy-free transition. It isn’t uncommon for me to see posts of “I went dairy-free, with no other changes in my diet or lifestyle, and 15 pounds simply melted away!” Why? A few hypotheses emerge in the studies of 'Obesity and Milk', and in the consumption patterns outlined in the 'Obesity in the Cheese Generation'. We have to say that it is becoming easy to believe that the dairy campaigns seen in the media will make us believe that dairy consumption will lead to a healthier lifestyle. The Journal of Clinical Nutrition, which has reviewed close to 30 studies, found that results don’t really support the beneficial effect of increasing dairy consumption on body weight and fat loss. That is right: There is little to no solid scientific evidence that consuming dairy will have an effect on weight loss or even help you maintain your weight.

For babies:

Did you know that for millions of parents infant milk allergy has became a real concern ? The choice and need to follow a dairy free diet doesn’t usually end with the baby. We can see now that pediatricians often recommend that breastfeeding moms of milk-allergic babies go also completely dairy free. It is been noticed that milk protein consumed by a mom passes to his or her little one via her very own milk supply. The consequence is many moms have made the move to remain milk-free even after breastfeeding due to all the benefits of a dairy-free lifestyle.

Healthy digestion:

We all want to feel energised after a meal, and this starts with how our system digests the nutrients. In a growing number of people lactose intolerance triggers a variety of digestive symptoms. This includes: stomach pain, cramps, bloating, flatulence (aka gas), diarrhea, and nausea. A recent estimation has shown that 70% of the world’s population has some degree of lactose intolerance. Dairy has also been labeled as a key trigger in IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) and various other digestive conditions, from the EoE and FPIES mentioned above to chronic constipation. People who suffer from lactose intolerance which is a gastrointestinal condition in which our body is unable to digest lactose easily, Lactose is the type of sugar found naturally in dairy products. Why ? Some people actually stop producing lactase, which is the enzyme required to digest dairy. This might be part of our body’s natural defense system, which gives people who are lactose intolerant a lower risk to experience lung, breast and ovarian cancers. This, according to a 2014 study in the British Journal of Cancer is what has been noticed in people who consume far less dairy products. We notice that countless people drink milk and unfortunately endure the discomfort caused by dairy without even knowing the cause. So going dairy free may help you settle your stomach by avoiding abdominal bloating, cramps and other nauseous states.

Preventing milk allergy and sensitivity reactions:

Milk allergy is a real thing. Dairy is one of top 8 food allergens listed in the U.S. and top 11 in Canada. Don’t you think it is good to know how sever a milk allergy can be ? In some cases it can be life-threatening. This is called anaphylaxis or Hive. We see two types of allergic conditions that are commonly linked to dairy: The gastrointestinal tract specifically is affected and due to a delayed reaction diagnosing the allergy. FPIES (Food Protein Induced Enterocolitis Syndrome) and EoE (Eosinophilic Esophagitis) are some examples of milk allergies. What we call the“traditional” dairy allergy has a higher prevalence in infants and young children and an increasing number of adults have been diagnosed for EoE (Eosinophilic Esophagitis). Did you know that a milk allergy can appear at any stage in life?

Calcium/stronger bones:

We have all been told that drinking milk is the best source of calcium to strengthen our bones. But do you know about the different plant-based sources of this vital bone-building mineral ? How about: Leafy greens, beans, nuts, fruits (especially oranges and figs), and fortified cereals and nut milks, whole grains, seeds, sweet potatoes, white beans, sardines, edamame just to name a few. You will find in those named above the precious mineral for your body. According to a 2014 study from the British Medical Journal, researchers found that the more milk people absorbed, the more likely they were to suffer hip fractures in their future. Something interesting has been found recently  in studies and population reviews - countries with the highest rates of osteoporosis are also the largest consumers of dairy products. Stronger bones without dairy is possible !

References:

USDA Agriculture Fact Book, 1998

“Avoiding milk is associated with a reduced risk of insulin resistance and the metabolic syndrome: findings from the British Women’s Heart and Health Study.” By Lawlor DA, Ebrahim S, Timpson N, Davey Smith G.; Diabetic Medicine, 2005;22:808-11.
“Milk, Dairy Fat, Dietary Calcium, and Weight Gain.” By Catherine S. Berkey, ScD; Helaine R. H. Rockett, MS, RD; Walter C. Willett, MD, DrPH; Graham A. Colditz, MD, DrPH; Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, 2005;159:543-550. The British Journal of Cancer

© 2017 Le Coquin | By Vane