I was prompted to write this blog by an article I saw this week in Time Out New York. “Without dairy, you would have to consume pounds and pounds of greens to get enough calcium,” said a nutritionist they quoted. Eeek…no!!! Not true! I found myself muttering around the house to myself. So instead of joining the legions of New York self-talkers that I often hear and see in Washington Squre Park, ☺ I decided I needed to just write and share this with you guys.
In our country, dairy products are pasteurized, a process that destroys all the dairy’s live enzymes, including the enzyme phosphatase, which is important to the assimilation of calcium. Furthermore, most adults only have 5-10% of the enzyme lactase they had as a child, which is the enzyme we need to digest diary. With the deficiency of lactase, the undigested milk sugar ends up in the intestine as the perfect culture medium for bacteria to grow on. This can also lead to excess toxins and mucus in the body, an increased tendency for weight gain, and as yogic tradition would say- a clogging of our nadis, our channels of energy that flow in the body.
“Ironically, osteoporosis tends to occur in countries where calcium intake is highest and most of it comes from protein-rich dairy products,” says Dr. Campbell, head of the China Project, the most comprehensive large study ever undertaken of the relationship between diet and the risk of developing disease.
Another yucky fact about dairy is that dairy fat is loaded with different kinds of toxins, such as our country’s super high exposure to dioxin- a highly toxic chemical compound that even the EPA admits can directly lead to serious diseases and cancer. And there has even been a link between dairy and acne, a shocking truth revealing the detriments of animal product.
The GREAT news is who needs all that dairy anyway?? It is mucus forming, pasteurized, enzyme-stealing and super hard to digest, and definitely fattening (for the overwhelmingly vast majority of people anyway, I believe). And you already have the best choice available to you for calcium every day: Green vegetables. Greens have calcium absorption rates of over 50%, compared with 32% in milk. I get plenty of calcium from greens by regularly consuming green smoothies, green juices and a multitude of various salads. Other fruits and veggies are also very high in calcium, such as olives and dates. Calcium is best assimilated by the body when both magnesium and manganese are present together, as they are in greens. Greens are also very alkaline, which means they don’t cause urinary calcium loss, the way acid-producing dairy products do.
There are so many amazing types of dark leafy greens. Notice its strong, vibrant, living energy. Here I am with one of my most favorite greens of all: collard greens. Collard greens are so tough and remind me of the jungle, or that they could have survived from the time of the dinosaurs. Eating collard greens makes me feel almost primal, and definitely connected to the earth. I’ll post a great collard green recipe soon.
Glad I got that off my chest!
Hope you are having a great week!