Quitting dairy. User manual.
As the saying goes, the devil is in the detail.
I wrote this blog post last week.
And immediately I was asked for more details by a few of my readers.
As it usually happens, when you are deep into your thing, everything seems to be self-explanatory — but it actually isn’t for the majority of people, who don’t have my life experience, my career, my fascinations. And we humans always learn better through details, real-life examples, personal stories.
So here it is. Real-life down-to-earth practical guide to Lean and Sharp Keto and LCHF. Based on my life and lives of my clients.
Quitting dairy. It’s easier than it feels right now.
As with any other habit — trying to just quit it is a dumb approach destined to fail for the most of us.
What do we do then?
There are 2 parts to the dairy substitution:
- Substituting tasting/eating experience. Like enjoying your coffee with milk or heavy cream. Or loving your mozzarella in your lunch and dinner salads, or on a breakfast lowcarb toast. Living of cream cheese fat bombs through the mid-day down-time. Relaxing with friends and melting cheddar on your cauliflower pizza on the weekends.
- Substituting nutrition. Dairy products are one of the richest sources of calcium (that comes with its health costs). And most people wouldn’t know where to get their calcium now, that they have to quit dairy. And by the way, those insatiable cravings for cheese you have, one of the big reasons for them might be that you don’t have any other sources of that important mineral in your diet! And that’s about to change…
There are tons of milk substitutions for any purpose you have in mind — almond, hazelnut, cashew, sesame… — if you don’t like one brand or kind, try hundreds of others! The beauty of our food system? There is always the next best thing. You just haven’t found it. Yet.
Missing your mozzarella in your salad? Cheddar on your cauliflower pizza? Cheese sticks snack? Check out all the links. Visit your favorite health food store and check out a vegan section — some vegan cheeses, I swear, are like crack made from almonds! But better.
It takes a bit of experimenting and finding what you love — but believe me, it’s worth it. Your health, happiness and six pack are worth it!
Where do you get your calcium now?
There are quite a few great sources, that provide you with not only calcium but a whole range of essential for health and life nutrients.
Can you guess one of them?
My favorite food on Earth! Available anywhere and everywhere. Cheap. Delicious. Versatile. No cooking required — most sardines come cooked in cans (Just be aware of vegetable oils). They provide Omega-3s, protein, Vitamin D, Calcium, Phosphorus, some Choline and Vitamin E, some Iron and Zinc, Magnesium, a lot of Vitamin B12.
How much do you need to eat daily?
4 average cans, 400g, 14oz, will give you a total amount you need and more, 1100 mg.
I eat 200g of sardines, 2 cans daily for calcium and all the mentioned above nutrients. (Also motivated by one millionaire promoting sardines quite heavily, eating 5 cans of them daily! I still have some space to grow to catch up!)
Salmon, 230g or 9 oz, will give you 500mg of calcium (also with Omega-3s, potassium and other minerals).
Shrimp, 230g: 340mg.
That’s why I love seafood! It gives you so much with each bite!
Other sources? Plant sources?
I’d prefer you to eat sardines — since calcium in greens and seeds comes with fiber, and very often the body is not able to extract everything effectively. On the other hand, greens and seeds also have other nutrients, that you get with your calcium, like vitamin C, fiber, magnesium, beta-carotene and other anti-oxidants and phytochemicals…
The best way to cook your greens: sautéed with water on a moderate heat for 10 minutes, add olive oil, herbs, spices, salt at the end.
Collard greens, 1 cup cooked: 268mg
Spinach, 1 cup cooked: 245mg
Sesame seeds, 100g: 990mg (Soak them in water for 6 hours before eating. Keep refrigerated)
Chia seeds, 100g: 631mg (Put them in the fridge overnight in your favorite nut milk. Enjoy for breakfast! 1 cup of liquid per 1 tbsp of chia seeds)
Flax seeds, 100g: 255mg (Crush them in spices/coffee beans grinder, put in your smoothies or sprinkle on your salads and meals)
Combine a few of those sources daily and you get all the calcium you need and more! (You also need your vitamin K2 to use that calcium properly, but that’s for another day)
I personally use naturally sourced supplements in a form of mineral waters, like Donat, when I can’t get my calcium from food, or don’t want to eat my calcium on that day. Go for pill supplements as the last resort. I’m using Nature’s bounty mineral supplement.
What other dairy needs do you have?
Let me know! I’ll be happy to destroy all your milk excuses to not be your best self!
I’ll also help you to find ways to enjoy your coffees, pizzas, cheese sticks and cream cheese fat bombs with ZERO dairy! You can eat your cheese and have your health and six pack too!
That’s it for today — stay tuned for the details on the remaining 4 practical steps of your Lean and Sharp Keto journey — that I’ll be writing for you this week from Greece, where I manage to stay Greek salad free and sardines full!