I cannot wait to share VEGAN CHEESE with everyone I know!! This week I'm sharing the introduction to my newly released ebook, "How to Ditch Dairy," because so many people message me asking what vegan cheese to buy. Read on to see what it's all about and make sure to check out the book at laurendagostino.com/ditchdairy.
Five easy ways to ditch the dairy without losing your mind look like this:
RECOGNIZE that you are most likely addicted - because most dairy consumers are. It's the nature of the cheesy beast - more on that in the excerpt below.
CREATE A PLAN that you can realistically hold yourself accountable to - I promise you, it's worth it! I started by taking the slice of cheese out of my (then, turkey) sandwiches. It was a baby step in the right direction.
EXPERIMENT with the vegan cheeses presented in the ebook - everything from homemade sauces to store-bought brands, and what recipes and foods they work best in.
GIVE GRACE AND BE KIND - it's okay to simply start by reducing the cheese consumption at first - in fact, it's what I'd recommend! It's not realistic to quit "cold tofurkey" because it'll play tricks on your brain, causing you to lose hope and confidence that you can kick the habit.
CELEBRATE each and every little dairy-free win - I MEAN IT!! Each meal you enjoy without dairy deserves to be hung on a wall of vegan fame, because your collective wins will start to add up and they'll fuel a positive mindset of YES I CAN ditch dairy.
Enjoy the excerpt from How to Ditch Dairy below and start experimenting with vegan cheese today! Make sure to share your wins and struggles with me on social @cheflaurendagostino, I'd love to hear from you!
And if private coaching is more your jam, stay tuned for details on 1:1 support coming very soon!
Dairy-free, vegan, or plant-based does not have to mean no cheese. Around here, we love cheese - and really seriously enjoy the heck out of it!
Hi, I'm Lauren, self-proclaimed expert on kick-ass vegan cheeses that you'd swear weren't dairy free. I've tasted and tested them all, and my favorites have earned their place here in this how to ditch dairy guide for good reason.
A former ice cream addict, and full-blown cheese-a-holic, I drank milk all the way through college. For three years, I was on a mission to taste test every fettuccine alfredo and crème brûlée I could get my hands on.
Seriously, I was crazy for dairy, but I had no idea what it was doing to my body once its flavor had left my lips. My skin had started to show signs of dairy intolerance, but I didn't make the connection until almost 12 years later.
Around the age of 25, I noticed something funky was happening with my digestion. I knew of lactose intolerance, of course, and had started to think that perhaps that was starting to happen to me. The more curious I got, the more evident it became that lactose intolerant is a completely erroneous concept.
It's not that we as humans can become lactose intolerant, it's that we quite simply ARE NOT COWS! We are not meant to drink the stuff! Its only purpose is to turn a baby calf into a 600lb. cow in a matter of weeks. It's seriously potent stuff, definitely not meant to be downed by the glass "for strong bones" as we have been taught.
Dairy is incredibly inflammatory in our beautiful human bodies, and consuming it in droves has serious implications to our health. It's mucus forming, which means it'll trigger congestion, clog up your GI, and cause breakouts as a result.
It is also very acidic and so our bodies, the magical machines that they are, will go to any length to maintain a balanced pH to protect us. In this case, that means leeching calcium from our bones in an effort to neutralize the acidic pH created when we consume dairy. So, dairy does not, in fact, build strong bones - quite the opposite!
Maybe you find it INCREDIBLY addictive. But why? Because, again, it's meant to help a new mama cow turn her calf into a big strong cow in a matter of weeks - this is for survival of the species. Its addictive quality is intentional - so that the calf will crave the mother's milk in order to help it grow and survive. In fact, fragments of the cheese protein, called casomorphins, activate the same receptors that are triggered by heroine and other narcotics. Each bite of cheese or ice cream gives our brain little hits of dopamine.
Hormones used on dairy farms are another big reason to avoid the food category all together. Milk comes from a cow that is pregnant or has newly given birth. During this cycle, her hormones are extra high, just like when a woman is pregnant. To compensate for this very unnatural state of perpetual pregnancy, dairy cows are given hormones so that they become milk producing machines.
Their udders become so tender and over milked, often producing puss and other yummies that make their way into the milk. All those hormones that the cows were fed? Yep, those are definitely in the milk too. What they eat, you eat. The rise in reproductive cancers, earlier onset of puberty in young girls, and osteoporosis as we age can all be traced back in large part to the milk and milk products we consume.
But fear not, dear friend! You can ditch the dairy with ease and vegan cheese, now that you understand a bit more about WHY it's so important to make the switch. What follows is a fabulous collection of the easiest, cheesiest vegan recipes and meal ideas to help make the weening process easy breezy.
Ready to start making a change? Sneak a peek at the ebook at laurendagostino.com/ditchdairy and if you're up for the challenge, dive in to dairy free deliciousness!!