What happened when I stopped eating dairy for a month
During the month of January when all of my friends were giving up alcohol, I was giving up a different kind of indulgence, dairy. Now I would have much rather done dry January with alcohol but that would have been too easy for me as I very rarely drink as is. However, if you asked me if I ever found myself wanting to binge drink nacho cheese sauce I would have to say, “‘no comment”.
I knew this was going to be a struggle because a) I am Italian and b) pizza is one of my main food groups. I was fine with switching out cows milk with nut milk and ‘ok’ when it came time to go with an alternative to ice cream but it was going to be cheese that was the hardest to give up for me. I have day dreamed of swimming in mozzarella and showering in parmesan and when I did give up dairy on January 1st I had dreams shortly after of eating a large cheese pizza to my face.
What did make it a bit more bearable was how quickly I saw changes with in my body. The first thing I noticed was I was not as bloated any longer. I was never lactose intolerant but I would definitely deal with bloat after my morning cereal with cows milk before. The second and I’d have to say my favorite outcome of giving up dairy has been how clear my skin now is. The texture, the tone and my stubborn monthly adult acne cleared up in two and a half weeks, something no topical solution or pill has ever been able to do for me before. My skin was glowing so much my mother asked if I was expecting!!
The final major change I noticed around the last week was how clear my sinuses got. I would typically wake up with morning allergies daily and I thought it was just a part of life, blowing my nose first thing in the am and doing the neti pot every so often. Giving up dairy had a profound impact on my sinuses.
Here is a great guide to going dairy free from howlongtocook.org. I actually tried blending my own ice cream after I found I wasn’t the biggest fan of the dairy-free ice cream from the grocery store. Once I realized peanut butter was in fact dairy free, I was so excited for PB banana ice cream and let me tell you it was delicious.
What I haven’t found and I am still sad about is a cheese alternative that doesn’t taste like cardboard to me. The first food I broke dry January with was in face a delicious cheese pizza and let me tell you, it was so worth it even the bloat that followed. Today I have kept the change from cows milk and still have not indulged in ice cream but I can not and will not give up my cheese so if anyone knows a brand they enjoy that acts and tastes closest to the real thing, lmk!