A little background first…
Living Primally … or living according to “The Primal Blueprint” is ALL about lowering INFLAMMATION. If you have NO idea what inflammation is…. read this. In general, reducing inflammation is healthy. In my opinion, inflammation causes many (I would say MOST) of our health problems.
My personal goal is to lower inflammation as much as possible to achieve peak health and wellbeing. Poisons (dyes, pesticides, toxins etc ), sugar, Grains, Cereals, high carbohydrate foods… ALL increase inflammation. Why? All cause body responses that require our body’s systems to divert resources to protecting the body and in so doing, it reduces our ability to fight off diseases, germs, virus and bad bacteria, etc.
Is DAIRY inflammatory?
You can read Mark Sisson’s take HERE, but the short answer is, it is not inflammatory to everyone but it is inflammatory to most of us. Most of us have a lactose or casein intolerance which varies from slight to serious. Here is a quote from MarkDailyApple.com, he explains it pretty well….as usual. :)
If you’ve been eating dairy your entire life, your body doesn’t know anything else. In that case, you’ll want to fully drop it…. Remember – pre-Primal, you probably “felt fine” eating grains and sugar every day. You may have to take the same approach if you really want to figure out what dairy does to you.
So what is the easiest way to know if you are Dairy intolerant?
As Mark described above, “drop it” … or as I have been calling it, a “dairy fast”. Mark mentions “dropping it” for a month but I was able to dairy fast for only a week.
I read MarksDailyApple (MDA) daily… I knew all this but being diabetic I had other issues that had higher priority. After tackling the Blood Glucose issues by defeating my carbohydrate addiction (thanks to The Primal Blueprint” ) I put potential dairy intolerance on the back burner. Then I met a new friend, Sharon Ecim who mentioned that she was experiencing improved health benefits after ditching dairy…. at her recommendation I decided to find out for myself if I was “dairy intolerant”.
I performed a “Dairy Fast” and avoided butter, cheese and Heavy Cream for five days. (I’ve been Milk Free since August ’09) On the sixth day I added Heavy Cream to my coffee…. within an hour my stomach began to churn and later I experienced nausea with light diarrhea. I continued to drink the Heavy Cream in my coffee throughout the day as I wanted to make sure it was the cream that was causing the problems… IT WAS. Later in the day, I became VERY lethargic and had not felt that way since my Diabetes diagnosis 18 months earlier.
Still, I love butter, cheese and Heavy Cream… I wanted to make sure it was the cream that caused “problems”. I decided to repeat the dairy fast and reintroduce the Heavy Cream again a week later…. SAME results…. I am Dairy Intolerant. It took me 49 years for me to figure it out.
I also know that pasteurized butter ‘inflames” my system but as yet I have not re-introduced cheese.
I could continue to eat, drink dairy (but never milk due to the high carb count) …. but I am not. The path to longevity and quality of life is reducing inflammation… if I was “perfect” in all other areas of my life, I might continue to eat dairy. Truth is, I have plenty of other areas that contribute to raising my inflammation. I have a tendency to over train, to stress and I also have difficulty sleeping.
Given my “inflammatory” picture… I am not going to add to it by consuming dairy. What you do depends on YOU… but I would recommend that you at least find out if you are dairy intolerant by performing at least a 5 day “dairy fast”.
There are several possible options people have submitted, thanks to you all! I am not saying any of these options are or are not “non-inflammatory”… but they are possibilities to explore which I will do over time.
1) Goat Milk & Cream
2) Ghee or even better Coconut Ghee, go here for a great recipe. (Ghee is butter fat ONLY, no milk proteins nor whey)
3) Organic Cream (in case the intolerance is due to chemicals/hormones etc.)
4) Pastured Cream – from grassfed cows
5) Cutting Heavy Cream – one person suggest cutting with water, another with goat milk.
** If you have other ideas, feel free to comment. … THANKS!