Mourning the Loss of Ice Cream, Cheese, etc…
I have had to confront in recent years that my beloved cheese and ice cream was not my friend. So for those of you who feel that life without your favorite dairy product is too extreme to even contemplate, you have my understanding. However, the truth is the truth and I am here to share that with you to the best of my understanding. Similar to gluten intolerance, dairy intolerance is very common and affects the digestive tract/body in an unhealthy fashion.
When I speak of the digestive tract being affected, one assumes that I mean there will be a digestive response to the consumption of dairy. Not always – in fact, not even usually. Similar to gluten, dairy products cause inflammation to the digestive tract that can in turn create many symptoms throughout the body, not just the digestive tract as many would presume.
This Study Tells the Tale
I wanted to share a study with you that validates something we have seen clinically for years. It’s from the British Society for Immunology, Vol 147: pp 449-455, titled “Mucosal reactivity to cow’s milk protein in celiac disease”. In this study the authors were trying to discover if cow’s milk could be problematic in creating intestinal inflammation in those who also suffered from celiac disease.
The test subjects were known celiacs who were considered in remission from celiac disease. In other words they were following their diet and their intestines appeared healthy. Also included were healthy controls.
Milk Caused the Same Damage as Gluten!
Both gluten and cow’s milk were challenged. As expected 18 out of 20 [90%] of the celiac patients reacted with intestinal inflammation when gluten was introduced. But in addition, 10 out of 20 [50%] of the same patients reacted the same way with the introduction of cow’s milk. [Note: both the protein casein and lactalbumin were challenged in the dairy category].
Cow’s milk caused the immune system to respond in the same way as it does when it is confronted with gluten. This is exactly what we have thought and something that our new cross-reactive tests are validating.
I know this blog is going to generate questions regarding other dairy products, milk from other mammals, etc. So let me answer those now: Currently our feeling is that the milk from any mammal (other than from your mother when you’re a baby!) is a poor idea. It should be noted that approximately 75%, some say much higher, of the world’s population is lactose intolerant. These statistics embrace countries and cultures from around the world. That is too high a percentage to ignore.
As I mentioned, we here at HealthNOW’s Clinical Nutrition department have seen the problems with dairy products clinically in our patients for many years. In the past two years we have gotten stricter in dairy avoidance (no butter or yogurt), only to find that our patients improve faster when complete elimination occurs.
Try a Diary Free Challenge… Just Try!
I know, I can see your frown and hear you starting to whine. I understand…truly I do. Consider this – try a 30 day complete elimination of all dairy products (all mammal sources) and see how you feel. Then eat some and notice what your body does. Remember that the reaction doesn’t have to be digestive in nature.
I’m here to help you so please keep in touch and let me know how you do. Our destination clinic treats patients from across the country and internationally. We would be delighted to help you improve your health!
p.s. Some of my favorite dairy-free alternatives are:
Daiya cheese – tapioca and arrowroot, coconut ice cream (Bliss) and coconut yogurt.
In the meantime I will continue to write and speak and blog and video. As a matter a fact you can view a recent video I taped on the topic here.
Permission is granted to re-post this article in its entirety with credit to Dr Vikki Petersen & HealthNOW Medical Center and a clickable link back to this page. Dr Vikki Petersen, DC, CCN is founder of HealthNOW Medical Center and the author of “The Gluten Effect” and eBook: “Gluten Intolerance – What you don’t know may be killing you”. She has been featured in national magazines, international medical journals and is a frequent headlined speaker.