We've been told since we were little tikes, drink your milk. It builds strong bones….If you want to grow up to be as big and strong as your daddy, drink your milk….Drink milk to get calcium. Drink milk to get protein….Drink milk and more milk and more milk. You can never have enough milk! Let's face it: we've been told to drink milk until the cows come home (yes, pun intended!).
BUT does milk really do the body good?
I am NOT here to convince you one way or another. I simply want to offer some food for thought. Are you willing to entertain some new ideas? Are you willing to check your long-held beliefs at the door?
I highly encourage you to read this post with an open mind, that's all. Just because "everyone' does something doesn't mean it's right. And just because we've been told since we were young to drink our milk, doesn't mean it's the best thing for us. Perhaps we've been misinformed? Now that's something to think about.
Eliminate milk, me? I could be the poster child for the white mustache. I mean I have a couple glasses of milk a day. I eat "healthy" Greek yogurt. I love cottage cheese and I add "healthy" cheeses (like feta and goat's) to my meals. Plus I love my ice cream. I can't eliminate milk. That's where I get my calcium. Milk helps me build strong bones. Milk gives me protein.
Regardless of my arguments, I did it anyway. I slowly cut dairy from my diet. I was determined to give it a try. I did it mostly because I was told it can help athletes perform better. I didn't really care about any other reasons. I simply wanted to get an edge on my competition and if eliminating milk would help my body perform more efficiently, ok then. I'll give it a whirl.
That was about four years ago and since then I've done some more homework and studying up on the subject. I've found dozens of conflicting articles, books written on the subject and documentaries made. Does milk really do the body good or not?
Since eliminating dairy from my diet, I've felt better. My "engine" (body) feels cleaner and more efficient. When you have a cold, the doctor tells you to lay off the milk and dairy because it's mucus forming in your ears, nose and throat. Well that's true on the cellular level too. It is mucus forming in your body. Your cells cannot perform as efficiently with milk/dairy in your system. I know from personal experience that I felt better and performed better as an athlete when I eliminated milk from my diet.
In addition, I had to study up on other sources of calcium and protein. For so long I believed milk was God's gift to man. I mean where else can you find such a perfect "food?" Milk gives you calcium, protein and a good amount of fat and carbohydrates too. When in doubt of what to eat, just drink milk. Right?
So now by taking away milk/dairy from my diet, where was I going to get calcium (Ca) and protein? I mean where else can you get Ca and protein other than milk?
This change in diet forced me to branch out, read, research and find other sources of Ca and protein to meet my nutritional needs. And guess what? I found dozens of other great sources. In fact I found much better ways to get Ca and protein into my body -- foods that are superior to milk and offer much better bio-availability of Ca and protein (not to mention many other needed nutrients) for quick absorption into my body.
Contrary to what I'd been taught, I learned that milk isn't the only way to get Ca and protein in my diet. In fact it isn't even the best way to get these nutrients. Who would've thought?
All in all, I consume milk/dairy products very rarely. Yes, I will have some from time to time, but I feel the aftereffects of it especially because my "engine" is not used to processing it. However for the most part, I do not eat milk/dairy products and I feel great. I don't miss milk in the least. At first it was an adjustment weaning myself off of it, but boy, I'm glad I did.
This post in no way scratches the surface on the milk debate. I don't pretend to be an expert on the subject and I do NOT recommend you eliminate dairy from your diet. What I do recommend you do is open up your mind to other opinions and views on the subject. In addition, I suggest you learn more about the milk debate and do some studying for yourself. As I said before:
Just because "everyone' does something doesn't mean it's right. And just because we've been told since we were young to drink our milk, doesn't mean it's the best thing for us. Perhaps we've been misinformed?