Milk is full of unsavory additives that can contribute to, or exacerbate existing health problems. If you want to feel healthier, consider giving dairy the boot. If you’re concerned a dairy-free diet won’t give your body the calcium it needs to perform important functions – don’t be. There are plenty of foods you can eat to get enough of this important mineral.

A Dairy-Free Diet Helps Reduce Your Intake of Chemical Toxins

Using antibiotics, hormones and chemically treated feed is the norm in the dairy industry. All of the chemicals that farmers use in dairy cows can easily pass to the milk supply. When you drink chemically laden milk, it gets into your system and puts you at risk for all types of health problems.

Dairy cows are given hormones to help them produce unnatural amounts of milk. This helps farmers earn as much money as they can before the cows are put out of their misery. When dairy cows produce more milk than they should, it can cause mastitis. Mastitis is a mammary gland infection that causes pain, heat, swelling, redness and hardness of the udders.

If mastitis is not treated in a timely manner, it can be fatal to cows. Mastitis infections are common among dairy cows because of cruel and unsanitary milking practices. Trying to treat or prevent this condition is part of the reason farmers use antibiotics in their cows.

The heavy-handed use of antibiotics in farm animals contributes to antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria. When you consume products that are littered with antibiotics, the drugs get into your system and cause you to build up a resistance to them. If you ever need antibiotics to fight off an infection, they may not be as effective on you.

A Dairy-Free Diet Eliminates Lactose Intolerance

If your diet is dairy-free, you don’t have to worry about the gas, bloating, abdominal pain, diarrhea and nausea associated with lactose intolerance. Lactose intolerance happens because the body cannot digest lactose properly. The fact that milk is pasteurized only makes matters worse for people with this condition.

During pasteurization, milk is heated to make it safe to drink. This process kills intrinsic germicidal properties and healthy enzymes. This makes digesting milk difficult and renders half of the calcium unusable by the body. The addition of chemicals and synthetic vitamin D2 and D3 make dairy even harder to digest.

Non-Dairy Sources of Calcium

Calcium is essential to a diet because it helps keep the bones healthy. This mineral is also important for nerve conduction, blood clotting, muscle contraction and the formation of cell membranes. If you don’t get adequate amounts of calcium in your diet, it can lead to fragile bones that break easily, problems with blood clotting and rickets.

People have been programmed to believe that milk is the only source of calcium around; but this is not true. If you eat a diet that’s rich in fish and plant-based foods, you can get all the calcium you need for a sound diet.

Keep in mind, your body absorbs calcium from plant sources better than it does from dairy sources. Here is a list of non-dairy foods that contain calcium.

  • oranges
  • grapefruits
  • pomegranates
  • mulberries
  • broccoli
  • cauliflower
  • rhubarb
  • turnip and collard greens
  • Brussels sprouts
  • butternut squash
  • parsley
  • kale
  • bok choy
  • okra
  • Brazil nuts
  • pistachios
  • sesame seeds
  • almonds
  • When you opt for a dairy free diet, you reduce the number of toxins you take into your body and eliminate the discomfort of lactose intolerance. Don’t worry though, there are plenty of foods you can eat to help you get the calcium you need for good health.

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