Dairy has been a very controversial topic lately. Should we consume it or not, are all people intolerant to milk, how we know whether we are sensitive to it, is raw better than pasteurized, and so on, and so on…
You might have come across all those questions. There is so much to talk about that I would definitely not fit in this blog, but there are some fundamental things you need to know. To help you understand the basics of dairy and whether you should consume it or not, I will point out why the topic of milk intolerance arises on first place. Secondly, I will give you three reasons why dairy might not be a healthy option for you, and lastly, I will present three reasons why milk is a great addition to your diet if you can tolerate it. Are you with me?
Now, dairy is a very special food element. All mammals consume it as toddlers. That is because milk contains hormones, fats, vitamins and much more that help babies grow and develop. It’s important to say that because of it, kids have special enzymes called lactase, which helps them break down mother’s milk. Thing is, many of us lose that enzyme as adults, and if dairy is consumed, it might cause unpleasant symptoms or even some diseases. In fact, some studies show that almost 2/3 of the population are dairy-intolerant. Though it depends on many factors, including your genes, your ancestry, the sources of dairy, blood type, etc.
You might be dairy-intolerant, if on a regular basis you experience one of these symptoms 30 mins. to 2 hours after you have consumed dairy:
- pain or cramps
- loose stools or diarrhea
Whether you are dairy-intolerant or no, here are 3 things to consider when consuming dairy.
- Dairy contains a lot of hormones and fat.
I would say that’s a pretty good reason to be careful with the amount of dairy you include in your diet. Take in mind that most dairy products contain hormones, fat and cholesterol that might influence your health and weight-loss goals.
- It might cause Leaky Gut Syndrome.
Leaky gut is one of those unpleasant things that might happen to your digestive tract if you consume dairy regularly and can’t digest it very well. Leaky Gut is a whole different story to discuss, but bottom line is – it causes inflammation in your body and possible bad side effects.
- Dairy can be very contaminated.
Just as almost any other food on this planet, dairy can come be very contaminated. It might come from animals that have been given antibiotics and hormones. Also, during the processing of milk, some other toxic contaminants might be added. The solution: choose only organic produce!
Dairy can be very beneficial too though. Here’s why:
- Dairy contains a lot of nutrients.
Dairy products are not only a delicious way to include protein in your diet, but they also contain a lot of vitamins and minerals, including vit. D, vit. B2, vit. B12, calcium, potassium, etc. BUT most of the benefits come only from grass-fed and pasture raised animals.
- Dairy can help prevent Type II diabetes and Obesity.
Studies show that people who consumed full-fat dairy milk had lower risk of Type II diabetes, while milk products were also associated with lower risk of obesity – which is so important in the current obesity pandemics.
- Some types of dairy contain beneficial bacteria for your gut.
Yogurt and kefir are brilliant sources of probiotics – type of bacteria that influences your digestive system in a very good way. They enhance the good bacteria in your gut, and that leads to an overall improved health and even weight-loss. Some people that are sensitive to dairy don’t have problems with yogurt precisely because of the probiotics.
Finally, it is up to you whether you should include dairy in your diet or no. I am currently in a phase of my life, where I try to avoid dairy, so I will be posting very delicious dairy-free recipes in the upcoming weeks. Stay tuned for more!