To keep with the informative theme I have going so far, I thought I’d discuss a major issue for those who have thought about veganism, Dairy. I’ve gotten many emails from readers stating they want to go vegan, but just can not live without cheese. They describe it almost as an addiction they have and cannot give up. The thing is, they’re right when they say they are addicted to cheese and other dairy products because that is precisely what it is, addictive, disease causing, and fattening.
Dairy products are said to be essential to life, that we need them to grow, and have to have it for calcium to prevent diseases such as osteoporosis. This multibillion dollar industry has persuaded doctors, the government, and consumers that dairy products are necessary for a healthy diet, three times a day at that too. However, many studies would say otherwise. Research conducted at Harvard, Penn State, Yale, and the National Institute of Healthy have determined the high protein content of dairy to cause calcium to be leached from the body actually causing osteoporosis. Not only that, but they found dairy to be linked to a host of other health problems including anemia, anxiety, arthritis, acne, ADD, ADHD, IBS, poor immune function, obesity, diabetes, autism, Crohn’s Disease, breast and prostate cancers, and ovarian cancer.
Dairy contains dioxins, one of the most toxic substances found in the world, and when you consume dairy products you are not only consuming this toxins, you are consuming the antibiotics, steroids, and hormones that were forced unto this cow. Some studies have even found radioactive particles in dairy samples and according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reported virtually 100% of all cheese products produced in the U.S. has detectable pesticide residue.
As I previously mentioned, cheese is very addictive for many reasons. There have been traces of morphine detected in many samples of cow’s milk. Morphine is highly addictive and is known to cause pulmonary edema, respiratory depression and failure, coma, among many other harmful side-effects. Not only that, all milks, cow or human, contains casein which is a protein that when digested causes the release of opiates (for those of you unsure of what an opiate is, it is a form of narcotic). Cheese has the highest concentration of casein. These “feel good” chemicals are necessary for newborns so they will nurse and ensures a bond between mother and child. This is a natural entity between mother and newborn, but in the case of cow’s milk and human consumption it is unnatural (we are the only mammals that drink another mammal’s milk), but still causes the same “feel good” and almost drug-like effect. Cheese also has phenylethylamine, an amphetamine-like chemical. Thus the reasons for the addiction.
Dairy is meant to grow a 90 lbs calf into a 1,500 lbs cow, and quickly. It is designed to allow a calf to double its weight rapidly and create a sense of fullness in their four stomachs. It has the same fattening effect on humans. And to boot, humans do not possess the enzyme necessary to break down lactate, a form a sugar found in dairy, which creates a whole other slew of problems beyond that of weight gain.
Dairy is fattening and addictive, it can cause diseases, illness, and allergies. It is the perfect thing to eat if you want to be ill and have a diseased-filled life. There are an abundance of alternatives for those of us who choose to do a body good the right way. Earth Balance Natural Spread is a very reputable brand of butter alternatives, Veganaise is a great sandwich spread, Tofutti has an abundance of “ice-creams” and “cheeses” and Follow Your Heart Vegan Gourmet cheeses are all casein free, vegan and very delicious.
My point is, I understand that right now some of you could not imagine a life without cheese, but I hope you will take this information to heart and even try some of these alternative while weaning yourself from dairy products. Just as any detox from any drug, it may be difficult at first, but you may be amazed how wonderful you feel, how that extra 10 lbs seem to melt away with ease, or that you actually can live a life without dairy.
*Some of this information was taken from Skinny Bitch by Rory Freedman & Kim Barnouin. If you haven’t read this book, you need to, it will change your life.