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Things That Make Me Go “Huh?”

EXHIBIT A:  DAIRY RELIEF

While working with an elderly woman for therapy at the skilled nursing facility, I noticed this empty packet on her breakfast tray.  It would appear that my patient is lactose intolerant, which means she produces insufficient levels of lactase, the enzyme that breaks down lactose (milk sugar) into glucose and galactose.

This chewable tablet is taken for the purpose of being able to consume lactose– i.e. dairy products– without incurring the symptoms of lactose intolerance:  abdominal bloating, cramps, gas, diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting.

What is milk?  Food for babies.

Once solid food is introduced, it’s the natural progression for mammals to wean off momma’s milk.  People do it.  Cows do it.  Goats and sheep do it.

It’s natural to stop drinking milk after infancy (including the early toddler years).  It’s normal to stop producing lactase, because you shouldn’t need lactase if you won’t be consuming lactose.

If you produce the lactace enzyme beyond the typical age of weaning, it’s called lactase persistence. Worldwide, lactace persistence is the exception, not the rule.

I grew up thinking it was normal to drink milk from cows.  This is because I was indoctrinated by my dairy-consuming culture to think this way.  I never questioned it because it was all that I knew.  It never occurred to me that humans drinking cow’s milk is actually quite bizarre.

Alas, the dairy industry is a propaganda machine.  So is Big Pharma.

Who concocted the idea that lactose intolerance– a normal biological process– should be considered a medical condition?  Dairy producers?  Drug companies?  Both?

Brilliant, huh?  Dairy producers are happy because they can keeping pushing dairy products on people.  And pharmaceutical companies are more than happy to supply people with just the right pill to “pop.”

Dear Lactose Intolerant People,

THINK about it.  You don’t need dairy products.  Milk from a cow (or a goat or a sheep or any other animal) is not a dietary necessity for humans.  If your body is telling you that you cannot properly digest lactose, then LISTEN and STOP.  It really is that simple.  And, not only are dairy products not necessary, but they are actually implicated in a variety of preventable human diseases.

There are also significant ethical problems with dairy, whether produced by small or large scale operations, and whether produced by conventional or organic dairies.

I haven’t consumed animal milk for nearly 4 years.  Weaning off animal milk is much easier than you might think.  Once you take dairy out of your diet, you might just say “Why didn’t I do this sooner?”

I am happy to help anyone who needs help weaning off dairy.  Contact me.

In closing, taking a pill– Dairy Relief– to digest a substance that is completely unnecessary in the human diet just makes me want to go “Huh?”

Milk a bean, milk a grain, milk a nut, milk a seed, milk a drupe (yes, a drupe!), but please don’t milk an animal.  When people consume milk from lactating animals, the first thing you should ponder is what is baby cow– baby goat– baby sheep– drinking?  What happens to the baby animals?  What happens to momma cow– momma goat– momma sheep when her overworked reproductive system stops being “profitable”?  The bad news is that the answers aren’t pretty.

The good news is that non-dairy milk options are plentiful.  It’s easier than you might think to wean off animal milk.  There is no nutritional need for animal milk in the human diet!

Go to the non-dairy milk section of your local store and you’ll notice an ever-increasing array of plant milks:  Soy milk, rice milk, oat milk, almond milk, hazelnut milk, hemp milk, coconut milk..even flax milk!  There are different brands of each type of milk.  There are different varieties within the types of plant milks..like plain, vanilla, chocolate, unsweetened, fortified.  If you don’t like one, try another.  Find your favorite!


Holiday flavors (YUM!) – Pumpkin Spice, Chocolate Peppermint, Nog


Make your “own” milk:  it’s easy to do and you needn’t endure a long pregnancy and painful delivery.  It’s also less expensive than packaged milk and more eco-friendly.  Personally, I don’t like the aftertaste of packaged almond milks but I love homemade almond milk.  I encourage you to make your own nut and rice milks.  Here’s how I do it…

First, make sure you have a batch of cooked short grain brown rice on hand.  I make up a batch and freeze portions in 1/2 cup glass jam jars.  One cup (dried) rice will make enough for 7 batches of milk.

You must use short grain rice!  You don’t want your milk to have a gritty sediment, do you?  What’s the difference between long and short grains?  The answer is in the percentage of the starches amylose and amylopectin.  (I first learned about them from chef Alton Brown…thanks, A.B.!)

Long grain rice has a higher percentage of amylose.  Amylose makes the rice cook up dry, firm and separate.  Amylose is insoluble in water.  Rice milk made from long grains has more of a “gritty” sediment.  The resulting milk is more watery, less creamy = not good!

Short grain rice has a higher percentage of amylopectin.  It releases starch when cooking, resulting in a moist, soft and sticky grain.  The resulting milk will be creamy without a gritty sediment = good!

On to the nuts…pick your favorite raw nut.  I like to use Brazil nuts, but sometimes I mix it up and use cashews, almonds, or hazelnuts.

Nut Rice Milk (my own creation):

Soak 1/3 cup raw nuts and 2 pitted dates into 4 cups water for 4-8 hours.  Blend the water, nuts and dates with 1/2 cup cooked short grain rice and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract in a VitaMix blender or other “sporty” blender.  (I don’t know if it would work with a wimpy blender!)  Frothy, healthy, affordable and delicious!  I don’t strain my milk.  I simply shake, then pour.

My personal favorite is mixing my homemade nut rice milk with packaged soy milk in a 50-50 ratio.  That’s just me!  You do what you gotta do…as long as you leave the animals alone!

"There are those who are appalled because I am so vocal about injustice, yet I am equally appalled by their silence." Lujene Clark

“Every time you purchase animal products you pay assassins to murder sentient beings for you.”

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"My purpose is not to offend you, it is to provoke you to think." Unknown

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