8 Easy Tips To Follow A Dairy-Free Diet Successfully

Though dairy products have been hyped for being high in nutrients, recent studies have indicated otherwise. Dairy products are, in fact, high in saturated fats which elevate the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and obesity. Further, a major part of the population is intolerant to lactose and suffer from digestive issues on consuming dairy products unknowingly. Going dairy-free, therefore, has become the latest health advice. But it is hard to quit completely, considering that everyone believes that dairy is the primary source of calcium. If you are trying to embrace a dairy-free diet, here are some tips that you can follow.

Learn to read the labels

Milk is a sneaky food ingredient that makes its way into foods in the most unexpected manner. Therefore, you should be aware of the dairy terminology because it may appear on the labels under names such as whey, lactose and casein derivatives. Look for these hidden forms of milk on the labels carefully and avoid the foods that have them.

Choose vegan foods

Even if you are not a full-time vegan, choose vegan options to ensure that your food is absolutely dairy-free. This approach will make it easier to pick foods while grocery shopping and also shortlist recipes that match this dietary choice. If you are a non-vegetarian, add lean protein such as chicken or fish to a vegan dish to guarantee that you are not having dairy.

Know the alternatives

Another useful tip for those looking to avoid dairy products is to know your alternatives. Nut milk such as almond milk is an excellent choice as it tastes great on its own, with a bowl of cereal or in coffee. Those allergic to nuts can try seed variants such as pumpkin seed or hemp seed milk. Coconut milk is another option that you can try. Choose the variants that are low on sugar and additives.

Eat more whole foods

There are numerous benefits of going dairy-free you can read
to know them better. Amongst these benefits is that this dietary choice helps in achieving your weight loss goals. If you want to reduce the intake of dairy products while accelerating the weight loss process, switch to whole foods. Such foods are usually free of milk and its derivatives as well as additives. Further, they are high in fibre which promotes weight loss.

Be selective while eating out

When you choose to give up a specific ingredient in your diet, eating out can become challenging. Choose only those restaurants that prepare dishes from scratch and do not use processed ingredients at all because the latter are often loaded with dairy derivatives. Look for a place you can trust enough to dish out meals according to the needs conveyed by the patrons.

Stash plenty of dairy-free snacks

The biggest challenge of following a restrictive diet lies in the inability to ward off hunger with the right food choices. You may feel like grabbing something that you are familiar with, like a glass of milk or a cheese-spread sandwich. The smart way to fight the temptation is to have plenty of healthy, dairy-free options at hand so that you can reach out for them when you feel like snacking. Switch to fruit and veggie salads, vegan chips or healthy cookie bars as snacking options.

Expand your palate

Though most of us grow up drinking milk and consuming its variants, remember that it is still one food that can be eliminated completely from your diet. Try expanding your palate by introducing yourself to new cuisines and dairy-free recipes. Experiment with spices, vegetables, fruits, seeds and nuts to create interesting dishes without dairy ingredients. Try cooking the Thai, Chinese, Japanese or Vietnamese way as these cuisines are practically dairy-free.

Don’t assume

The last word for those looking to ditch dairy and its derivatives completely is not to assume because everything is not as it appears. Even the store-bought bread, deli meat or chips can have dairy in some form while some rich, creamy foods like vegan mayonnaise may be milk-free. Do your homework and don’t hesitate to ask to get complete and correct information about your food choices.

Going dairy-free becomes easy if you follow these simple tips. However, you may be concerned about missing some nutrients by ditching these items. It is important to understand that it is the end and not the means that matter. There are plenty of non-dairy food sources that you can rely on for making a healthy, balanced diet that keeps you in good health and great shape.

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