Women are often surprised to find that a major component of my FASTer Way to Fat Loss program is that I ask my clients to try a dairy-free lifestyle. While many don’t go completely dairy free, most do their best to cut back on dairy products during the program. I am regularly asked the reasoning behind this, and wanted to share some of my thoughts to help readers make an informed decision. A major tenant of the FASTer Way program is that I truly desire for women to feel in control of their food choices. In order to truly be in control, we must educate ourselves about what we put into our bodies.
While everyone reacts differently to dairy, I truly believe everyone will see an improved quality of life when cutting back on dairy, or cutting out dairy completely.
Here are a few things to consider regarding dairy products:
Cow’s milk is for cows.
Cows produce milk for the same reason humans do: to feed their young. The nutrients in a mother’s milk is perfect nutrition for a baby cow, just as a human mother’s milk is perfect nutrition for a human baby. However, last time I checked, humans did not have the same nutritional needs as baby cows...so we probably don’t need mama cows to give our bodies what they need.
Milk contains a lot more than milk!
A significant amount of antibiotics are given to cows to prevent them from getting infections. Those antibiotics filter into a cow’s milk supply, tainting what we find in our cups and cereal bowls. In addition, cows in the U.S. are pumped full of growth hormones, which, when consumed by humans, raises our IGF-1 levels. Increased IGF-1 levels have been linked to prostate, colon, lung and breast cancers. When you pour yourself a glass of milk, you are pouring a little bit of milk, and a significant amount of hormones and antibiotics.
Milk causes digestive issues.
While this isn’t true across the board, it is true for many! According to Dr. Mark Hyman, “About 75 percent of the world’s population is genetically unable to properly digest milk and other dairy products — a problem called lactose intolerance.” I cannot tell you how many women report feeling less bloated and experiencing fewer digestive problems after cutting out dairy during the FASTer Way program.
Dairy doesn’t strengthen bones.
Wait, what...did I just write that? Yes! In her article about going dairy free, Alisa Fleming cites a well known study saying, “According to the landmark Harvard study of approximately 78,000 female nurses, women who consumed greater amounts of calcium from dairy foods had a significantly increased risk of hip fractures, while no increase in fracture risk was observed for the same levels of calcium intake from non-dairy sources.”
This wasn’t the only study to stumble upon these findings. Several other studies conducted over the years have shown countries with the highest rates of osteoporosis are also the highest consumers of dairy.
Many women ask if the issue I have is truly with dairy, or with the manipulation of dairy in today’s market. This leaves the door open for both organic or raw milk as alternatives to the modified milk we find in grocery stores. However, I truly believe milk is meant to be consumed by baby cows. Most of us stop producing lactase--the enzyme responsible for breaking down lactose--by the age of 5. Our bodies aren’t meant to consume milk much longer than when we are weaned.
With so many great-tasting, viable, healthy dairy replacement options on the market, I challenge you to give a dairy-free lifestyle a try! I am certain you will find some alternatives you love, and that the benefits to how you feel far outweigh the love you have for all things dairy.
Want to join the next round of my FASTer Way to Fat Loss program and join the thousands of women who have burned fat, increased their energy and regained control of the way they eat? My next round starts March 27th. Don’t wait as spots go incredibly quickly, and I will only be accepting a limited number of women!