Have a great day - eat something healthy.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Got Milk? The Dairy Dilemma

Okay, if this photo doesn't get you off dairy we've got some work to do! Dairy is a tough subject. I'm a girl who grew up in Wisconsin - I've got heavy cream running through my veins. And like the rest of the country I've been seduced by sexy celebrity milk mustaches and scared to death by threats of osteoporosis - so much so that for years I bought into the hype that dairy was the only thing that would whittle my waistline and keep my bones from snapping apart. Well, guess what? It's baloney! I'll let the experts tell you why...

"When you consume dairy products, you are ingesting the same antibiotics, pesticides, steroids, and hormones you would if you ate meat directly. Cows are injected with bovine growth hormone. Their udders, under normal conditions, would supply about ten pounds of milk a day. Greedy farmers have their cows producing up to a hundred pounds of milk a day! There is no gentle farmer milking the cow with a bucket between his feet. Cows are milked by machine; metal clamps are attached to the cows' sensitive udders. The udders become sore and infected. Pus forms...To get rid of all the bacteria and other shit, milk must be pasteurized. But pasteurization destroys beneficial enzymes and makes calcium less available without even killing all the viruses or bacteria. Hell, even radioactive particles are found in milk!"1

And what's in cheese and butter? You got it.

How about eggs? "Eggs are essentially cholesterol and salmonella delivery devices... A hundred people every year come down with salmonella poisoning from alfalfa sprouts, so the Centers for Disease Control says no one should eat alfalfa sprouts - yet a hundred thousand are infected by eggs each year, and that doesn't produce the same indignation."2

"Sickeningly high levels of pesticides found in dairy meet government standards. Records from the Food and Drug Administration show that 'virtually 100% of the cheese products produced and sold in the U.S. has detectable pesticide residues.'"3

What about organic, free-range or cage-free dairy products? "Although cage-free, organic, and free-range eggs are better from a food safety point of view they have pretty much the same nutritional profile and certainly the same amount of cholesterol."4 And the same can be said for milk and cheese products.

You mean dairy is fattening?!! Duh. "Cow's milk, by design, grows a 90-pound calf into a 2,000-pound cow over the course of two years... Sounds even more fattening than human milk, right? It is."5

Okay, so dairy myth is crumbling before our eyes. But we still have to address the burning question, where do you get your calcium? Simple...

"Great sources of calcium include green leafy vegetables, nuts, oranges, kidney beans, lima beans, whole grains, Swiss chard, lentils, raisins, broccoli, kale, celery, tofu and romaine lettuce."6

And here's one more thing to consider..."One reason why Americans have such a high incidence of osteoporosis (or weakening of the bones) isn't a lack of dietary calcium but an excess of animal protein, which leaches calcium from the bones. In fact, did you know that the countries with the highest rate of dairy consumption, including the United States, New Zealand, Britain and Sweden, also have the highest rates of osteoporosis? ...Meanwhile, people in rural China, who consume one-third the amount of dairy we do, have almost zero cases of osteoporosis."7

I've given you a lot to consider but we've barely scratched the surface. If you want to learn more, check out the International Vegetarian Union or any of the three books listed below. In the meantime, enjoy exploring all the great alternatives to dairy!

1,3,5 "Skinny Bitch" by Rory Freedman and Kim Barnouin
2,4 "The Quantum Wellness Cleanse" by Kathy Freston
6,7  "The Engine 2 Diet" by Rip Esselstyn


  1. WOW I thought I was educated before and although I thought I have pretty decent eating habits and avoid dairy, sugar and meat, I am getting a very good education during this cleanse!My biggest take aways thus far are
    1. I like tofu! I never ate it because I assumed I didn't like it. Now I love it thanks to Whole Foods who sells the BEST tofu in their deli! Which brings me to number
    2. I love Whole Foods!I shop at my local coop, but am staying with my daughters In Arizona during the cleanse and there is a Whole Foods near by and I am hooked!
    3. The Cauliflower, Celery and Green Pea Salad is the best and so guilt free, but I had to add ALOT of seasoning to the recipe!
    4. I like a cup of hot water and lemon in the morning. Yummy, refreshing and cleansing!
    5. I've had mixed feelings about eating animal products for some time, but was never motivated to stop until now. I love mindful eating!
    Now my question is how do I make Tofu so that is as yummy as when I buy it there? Any good recipes?
    Thank you Ivy for leading the way!!!

  2. Hi, Sue! I LOVE how you're getting into this! I think now you understand why I've been so fanatical about cleansing - it really is life changing, isn't it?! Love all of your insights- and your enthusiasm! And here's a link to the tofu recipes that are here at skinnyplus. Because I'm posting this in the comment section, I don't know if it will turn into a hyperlink or not. So if you can't click on it here, just go to the "Pages" column on the right side of this page and click on "Recipes - Tofu." I adore the Tandoor Tofu recipe - it's really quick, easy and tasty! Keep on, keepin' on, Sue - you are kicking ASS! http://skinnyplus.blogspot.com/p/recipes-tofu.html

  3. Hi Ivy! I know I'm a little late jumping in, but I hadn't actually planned a cleanse. Two days ago, I had a super-busy morning & skipped my morning espresso. In the afternoon, (after a grouchy mood & mild headache) I realized I had forgone my am "fix" & by that time couldn't get one for the fear of horrific insomnia. Yesterday, I woke up late & hit the ground running, (no, literally..I went running ;) and then decided I would, again skip the coffee since I mustered up so much energy from my run. 5pm began my personal hell...probably the worst migraine I've ever had! I was driving home with the boys & it got so bad, I called my husband at work to ask if he could leave to drive us home. I could barely see, it was so bad. At home, I fed the kids, put the baby to bed & put a movie on my laptop for Luke & Sebastien in my bedroom. I fell asleep at 8pm, still fighting vicious pain in my eyes. (ask anyone, I am almost never in bed before midnight--terrible habit, I know!) it's 4:45, & I just woke to change/feed the baby. I opened your blog to read your latest post & found this one. After my 48 (debilitating) hours of no caffeine, I'm ready for anything, I think it's a sign! ;) I have a friend out here that I think would do it with me...I'm on board & so looking forward to reading up and becoming further educated on the subject of food. Good stuff...thanks so much for the inspiration! :)

  4. Hi, Jamie! I'm so glad you're on board! I hope you continue to feel better and, on another note, I hope you're loving your new home and life! Way to grind through the caffeine withdrawal - it's by far the hardest part of this cleanse for most people. And once you get to the other side it's hard to imagine going back. I don't know if it's straight-up fear that keeps me away, or just the thought of strobing while I lay in bed trying to fall asleep - probably a combination of both. Either way, no looking back! And grab that friend of yours and get her/him involved. It's so much easier and way more fun to have a buddy while you're cleansing. But we can do that right here as well, so keep the posts comin', keep us informed, tell us the good, the bad, the freaky - whatever ya got! Last time we spent two days just talking about poop, so anything goes! Great to hear from you, and congratulations on muscling through! It's hard enough to do on a "normal" schedule - I can't imagine what it's like with two young ones! Way to work it!