I’m the greatest lover of milk. It was my bio for my social media handles for a while. I grew up with ads telling me that it’s where I get my calcium, and I love it with cereal, in teas, and before bed. Then things started changing: Should you really be drinking milk that’s made for calves? Dairy is bad for your skin! Everyone is lactose-intolerant! So I thought I’d try cutting it out, and these are the reasons why I stuck with it.
1. My Skin Improved
It was tough to get into it at first. Pizzas, pastas, ice-cream, yogurt. There are so many things that contains dairy! I had to actively educate myself on the food products that I could no longer consume. My skin genuinely improved. I refused to believe it for the longest time whenever I was researching online about my skin issues. I’m not prone to acne so I can’t comment on that but I suffer from textured skin and it has significantly reduced.
2. My Bowel System Improved
I’ve always had stomach issues – no, I’m not lactose intolerant. Although a lot of studies have shown that humans tend to get more lactose intolerant as they grow older. I started getting bloating for the past two years now, and the number of times my stomach acts up has reduced too.
3. Ethical Reasons
It never really occurred to me but I recently found out that milk is only produced by cows that are pregnant. Farmers then artificially inseminate them to get them to that state where females calves are bred to live the same life their mothers did, and males will most likely be reared for their meat. There are plenty of articles out there that’ll inform you of the mistreatments so I’ll spare you from that.
Another ethical dilemma is the production of greenhouse gases from cattle that contribute to climate change. If the demand for cattle products decreases, it would mean lesser of that happening. I don’t even want to start counting the amount of water used to produce our various dairy products.
4. Calorie Count
The number of calories in a cup of milk is actually a lot higher than you actually think. I omitted it on purpose so that you can still live in bliss. But trust me on this – it’s high. Granted, calorie for calorie, milk actually has a couple of vitamins and minerals that makes it easy to discount the calories but you can also get these vitamins in the form of your food and vegetables. Besides, if you cut it out, you’re essentially not consuming those calories then, and that’s more calories for your food which is great too, right?
5. Yummy Substitutes
I’m mainly focusing on dairy because that’s the source of most things i.e. yogurts, cheese, ice cream. Soy milk is almost as creamy, although that’s dependent on the brand you’re getting. Other options include the various nut milks, with almond being the most common, not forgetting oat, coconut and rice milk. I used to vehemently hate some of them but after using it in various teas and beverages, the pairing actually fares better than milk.
I get that it is difficult to cut it out entirely from the start. At least now that you know about them, the least you can do is try. Moderate your diet, try to choose meal options without cheese, opt for dairy-free ice cream, swap the milk in your lattes.