Dairy Free Diaries: 1 @eatswithclaire

Dairy Free Diaries: 1 @eatswithclaire

We challenged local Cleveland blogger @eatswithclaire to go dairy-free for a week! Read her recap here! 



Dairy has been something I’ve always enjoyed without a second thought.  However, last year, I started becoming more conscious about where I got my food; specifically, animal products from, and how what I ate had an impact on Mother Earth, and I chose to start reducing my meat intake and opting for dairy-free choices sometimes.  A few months ago, I also started to realize that dairy was messing with my digestive health. I wouldn’t poop (sorry, I said it) for days at a time, and I’d deal with uncomfortable and painful bloat for days after large dairy consumption.

Last week, I decided to go 100% dairy-free (except for one moment, which I’ll talk about later), and I figured I would share how my experience was!

Pros:

  1. I pooped almost every single day, which I know is normal and healthy, but this was huge for me! This has been something that I have been working to regulate, and simply cutting out dairy helped so much.
  2. I have a lot more energy. Going fully dairy-free and seeing drastic changes in how I felt confirmed that dairy was at; east one of the culprits for feeling lethargic and bloated.
  3. My skin cleared a lot. I have struggled with acne since I was 15, and I never put two and two together that dairy could have been causing it.
  4. Being dairy-free wasn’t that hard! At the grocery store and even out at restaurants, I could always find dairy-free options or substitutions. My favorite dairy replacement grocery store pickups were The Dairy Free Co.’s cashew cheese spreads and Nadamoo and So Delicious brand ice creams.

Cons:

  1. It was a little hard in social situations. For example, one night I went out for pizza at a spot that didn’t do half/half options, so I had to pick off the cheese on my slices. This wasn’t a big deal, but something I thought was worth noting,
  2. A few old disordered eating thoughts came up for me. I had dairy once because of the craving hit while I was at someone’s house without dairy-free options around, and afterward, I felt compelled to binge. I also found myself overeating on non-dairy foods to try to satiate a craving that I was restricting myself from.

Will I keep being dairy-free?

It’s technically been 3 days since I have stopped my challenge of being 100% dairy-free, and I have yet to consume dairy, which used to be a daily thing! Being dairy-free has so many health benefits for me while also being more sustainable, so I definitely plan on continuing to eat dairy-free when I can! However, due to my ED past, I don’t think labeling myself as 100% dairy-free and fully restricting myself is the best option. I’m so glad I tried this though and plan on being as dairy-free as possible without feeling restricted moving forward!

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