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Sorry for the late post - life is hectic these days!
Update on last week's Try It Out Tuesday - Eggs - I felt like last week went really well in terms of adding eggs to my diet. I actually started making the effort to make eggs for breakfast almost every day, which really helped me get them in for the day. I would say this has been my most successful Try It Out Tuesday so far, as I really made a conscious effort to add something to my diet that I do not normally enjoy all that much. I've found ways that I do like to eat eggs to - particularly with some organic raw milk cheddar cheese (which I actually found at my local Commissary of all places!)
This week for Try It Out Tuesday, I'm working on incorporating dairy into my life a little more. To start off what we're going to talk about, I want to throw it out there that I am lactose intolerant. I've heard from other bloggers that you can actually combat lactose intolerance by drinking raw milk, but for now we do not have access to a farmer for me to try that out, so I am not drinking any milk directly (we are moving to farm country in August though, and I've already lined up the farmer's I'm going to check out to get my fresh items!) If you do like to drink milk, I would definitely check out Kelly the Kitchen Kop's information about the benefits of raw milk. Again, I haven't done this research myself and I don't currently drink milk, but Kelly has a wealth of knowledge about topics along these lines, and I trust that she has done some pretty thorough research! You can also, as always, check out the Weston A Price Foundation for more information about raw milk.
If you do like to drink milk but don't have access to raw milk (or don't feel comfortable with raw milk) Kelly the Kitchen Kop also has a great post ranking the kinds of milk in her personal order of preference. Basically one thing she says to keep in mind is that often times in the grocery store organic milk undergoes a process called ultra-high pasteurization (and the label will say this on it) whereby the milk is pasteurized at an even higher temperature than normal milk. I noticed this when I first started buying organic milk for my husband - the date on the milk carton would say about two months out. We wondered aloud how that was possible, until I came across Kelly's post that explained it all to me. Now we look for organic milk that is regular pasteurized, not ultra-pasteurized (I can usually find them in the grocery store right next to each other, you just have to read the labels!)
Alright - so, how am I going to incorporate dairy into my life when I don't personally drink milk? Well, the answer comes from a few different items. First off, I love cheese. Since I recently found this source of organic, raw milk cheese in my store, I'm ecstatic that I can add more cheese into my diet and not feel guilty because of the hormones, antibiotics, etc that are always present in conventional products. In the interest of full disclosure though, I must say that the raw milk cheese is about double what the regular cheese is. So although I do love it, I'll have to be limiting my consumption just for money reasons.
My other favorite source of dairy is yogurt - particularly greek yogurt. You can find all different kinds of options in almost every grocery store, but my particularly favorites are Fage and Oikos. I haven't quite moved to making my own yogurt yet, although I may try it out this week since it is, after all, Try It Out Tuesday. Making my own yogurt would allow me to completely control the nutritional content of the yogurt, in addition to being able to be sure that I am adding only healthy, whole ingredients.
There are so many benefits to dairy it is hard to go through them all, but I'll give you an overview. Grass fed dairy (by far the best kind of dairy, if you have access to it) has been shown in studies to be higher in conjugated linoleic acids, or CLAs. CLAs help to improve body composition if you are trying to tone up or lose weight, and in fact dairy in general has been shown to help you lose weight if you are on a diet, so keep that in mind if that is a part of your goals. As an added benefit, in addition to the protein content of many dairy products which help to keep you full, dairy also contains levels of zinc, which work to help your body maintain its levels of leptin (which keeps your appetite down). In addition, dairy is high in calcium and vitamin D, which can combat issues ranging from high blood pressure, osteoporosis, and even help to lower your risk of cancer.
All in all, dairy can be really beneficial to your health and wellness. I've heard of people temporarily going dairy free to help combat allergies and such, but if you don't have any of these health problems, dairy products can be a great way to add more protein into your diet (along with those eggs!) along with a variety of vitamins and minerals. Dairy is great if you are trying to lose weight, or if you are just trying to live a little bit healthier life.
How are you planning on adding more dairy into your diet? How about making some homemade ice cream, drinking a glass of milk per day, or adding cheese into things that you normally eat (like salads, omelets, and even on a sandwich!) As always, I would love to hear your thoughts!
I'm reading this: Try It Out Tuesday - DairyTweet this! Posted by Lauren on Tuesday, June 08, 2010