How To Eliminate Dairy From Your Diet Without Going Insane!

Eliminating dairy from your diet

Telling someone you are taking away their cheese and ice cream are truly fighting words.  I am here to help make the battle a little easier. 

Why eliminate dairy?  Dairy is one of the most inflammatory foods out there.  You don’t have to be lactose intolerant to have negative effects when you consume dairy.  If you are experiencing bloating, diarrhea, constipation, gas, acne, or brain fog you may have an issue with dairy.  

Even if you feel fine most of the time it would be interesting to see how you feel when you eliminate inflammatory foods from your diet and see how you feel.  It wasn’t until I did a round of Whole 30 last year that I realized how much I was affected by the sulfites in the red wine I was drinking. One glass in and I had a headache and stuffy nose.  I literally had never noticed those symptoms until then. And don’t worry-I can still drink wine but I am more aware now before I pour a glass. I find organic wine, which has less or no sulfites in it.  

Enough about wine.  Let’s get back to how to get rid of that precious cheese that may be reeking havoc on your gut health.  And don’t worry. It can be easier than you think. We have a lot of options now.

Dairy alternatives are not new and they really have gotten better.  We have gone from having soy as the only alternative to having a wide range of nut products instead.  Nut alternatives are much better than processed soy in my opinion. We can get into that at a later blog post. 

Milk: You have lots of options.  Almond, cashew, coconut and even walnut milk are available to pour in your cereal bowl.  I have even seen blends. I am not one to chug a glass of milk with dinner but I do love all of these options.  I typically used almond milk for my smoothies and cooking and love cashew milk for my coffee. It seems a bit creamier and sweeter to me.  

Creamer: Speaking of coffee.  If you are a creamer addict you will love Nut Pods.  I was first introduced to this brand when I did Whole 30.  It is free of both dairy and sweeteners. If you are a hardcore creamer fan this will be a bit of an adjustment but trust me….this will help you ease into it.

Cheese:  This one is tough.  When eliminating dairy initially I would recommend a brand like Kite Hill.  They have great cream cheese and ricotta options but nothing like a sliced cheddar.  You can also make your own version of cashew cheese . Here is a great recipe that I have used in the past.  

Once you have eliminated dairy from your diet for 30 days or more you may want to try goat cheese and see how you react.  Some people are sensitive to cow dairy but not goat or sheep.

Iowa has some great dairy farms and you can often find a few of them at the Des Moines Farmers Market each week.

Reicherts Dairy Air

Doe’s and Diva’s Dairy

Yogurt:  If you love a great parfait for breakfast you are in luck.  Dairy free yogurt is pretty common in your local grocery store.  If you don’t see it with the rest of the yogurt check out the Health Market section.  Kite hill has some great options as well as GTS Living Foods, which is full of great probiotics and has a lot of tang!   Just remember with yogurt-go with the unflavored and fancy it up with your own sweetener, nuts, and fruits.  Most flavored yogurt is full of sugar.

Butter:  Get yourself some ghee.  Ghee is clarified butter which separates the milk solids.  Ghee is not tolerated by all so I would recommend waiting to introduce it after 30 days of no dairy to see how you react.  Wanna try it? Check out Better Butter Bureau, a local Des Moines company!

Ice Cream:  I live and die for it.  There are lots of dairy free options but I love So Delicious brand.  Eat that and tell me you can’t go dairy free!  

If you have questions about how to eliminate and reintroduce dairy into your diet don’t hesitate to reach out!  I would love to help you see how dairy is affecting your health.

Shaunna Maxwell