So I hinted last week that my partner and I were looking at changing our diets to be a little more environmentally friendly. This actually started a few years ago for me when one video had a lasting effect on me.
How it Started for me
I’ve been dairy free for two years and whilst I do miss a cheese board at the end of a meal I can honestly say I will never go back. Now I’m not going to preach or tell you that you simply have to change your diets but I hope you’ll find my story interesting.
It all started when, stuck in a Facebook video black hole I came across a video about the treatment of dairy cows. It was horrific. I’m not normally one for a shock video. GIve me a cat attempting to jump from one wall to another or a dog face planting into its owner any day. But I watched till the end and went to bed feeling slightly uneasy.
The next day I decided I would try soya milk in my tea and look at giving up dairy. I should point out that tea is my life blood so the thought of messing with the perfect cuppa I had cultivated over the years was daunting.
The result…I liked it. Bizarrely it tasted a bit like cake! Next came cheese. I have always had a love hate relationship with cooking. I hate cooking but love people cooking for me. So eliminating those frozen pizzas was going to be tough.
The slip up that changed everything
Now comes the slightly graphic bit but stick with me as it was the eureka moment. After two weeks dairy free I went to a friends house for a movie night and after a few glasses of grape juice… we ordered pizza. I didn’t want to be “that guy” so I put my ethics away and devoured a large deep pan meat feast. It was glorious. I was in cheese heaven…until the Uber ride home.
Without going into too much detail lets just say it’s lucky the god of traffic lights was with my driver that eve. When I got home my body rejected the cheese. Now I’m not one for science but after having no cheesy type bacteria the body (or mine) becomes intolerant to it and gets rather angry when you try and re-introduce it.
After this fateful night I went completely dairy free, even substituting my “I can’t believe its not butter” with vegan “It’s not butter, it just looks like it” spread. (I made that last name up). And I haven’t looked back since.
Life after Dairy
So what’s changed. Well apart from being a constant annoyance at dinner parties the biggest change was in my tummy. Since giving up dairy I’ve not suffered from any reactions to food or tummy bugs. The only thing that makes me feel a little queasy is Piers Morgan and too much booze. My skin is clearer and I can now walk past a herd of cows head held high.
The cheese substitutes are good, not great but you can make a good pizza with them. But to be honest I now don’t really like the smell of cheese or the taste, so often having an alternative just seems pointless. For milk there are so many alternatives and I’ve settled on Rice milk. But you can go for Oat, Hemp, Coconut and of course soy. However, the sustainability of soy and the methods used to produce it have been called into question.
Should you try it?
Of course I’m going to say yes. It’s been amazing for me. But that doesn’t mean it will be right for you. If you want to but don’t know where to start then just change one thing at a time. For me it started replacing the milk in my tea. The only thing I’d say for those of you who don’t want to ditch the diary is try as much as you can to go organic. The cows will thank you.
Have a lovely week