I started eating dairy regularly again.
After years of limiting my dairy intake, I have started consuming dairy again and adding it back into my regular routine of foods. Not a ton, but still a bit (gotta have that ice cream every once in a while!).
When I originally decided to stop eating dairy, it was for two reasons: 1) to help deal with getting rid of my acne and 2) to deal with the sensitivity I was having to eating dairy.
I cut dairy out of my diet day-to-day and on occasion I would have dairy. At family gatherings, nights out with friends… not daily, not even weekly, but just when I was willing to deal with the stomach issues that came as a result of eating dairy. But after moving back home after graduating college, I found myself craving dairy more and more and even eating more often than I did before. I think because my family eats dairy regularly and it was always in the fridge, I was always seeing it and wanting it. When I lived in an apartment in college, I bought my own food and did not buy dairy products, so I was never seeing it in my fridge.
So over time I started eating dairy more often when I was with my family. So at dinner, I would eat whatever my mom was making and sometimes it had dairy, so I just ate it. I always made my own breakfasts and lunches, so those did not have dairy in them.
But then I thought about how my body was reacting to me having dairy a bit more often than I was used to. When I first cut back on dairy, it did help with my acne, but only for a couple of months, then it was back to what it was before cutting out dairy, so I realized that I would need to do something other than cut back on dairy to deal with my acne (I ended up having to go on Accutane to get rid of my acne, but that’s a whole other subject). So I listened to my body during the meals I ate dairy at and to be completely honest, it seemed to be handling it just fine.
Now, I was not eating a plate full of macaroni and cheese or a bowl of creamy soup, it was a little bit of cheese on top of a protein or a bit of cream added to a side. Nothing too big. My stomach was fine and I did not deal with any major issues.
So I finally decided a couple of weeks ago that I would add dairy back into my life… in moderation. I think my stomach issues from dairy stemmed from me eating A LOT of dairy in one sitting at a meal. I was still getting adjusted to eating at the cafeteria at college, so let’s just say my meals were not the best when I was a freshman in the fall. But as I have taken a more whole foods approach to eating, I have found that a little bit of dairy here and there has been fine. I try to eat high quality dairy when I do eat dairy, and not a lot of it. That seems to be doing just the trick.
So what have I been eating now that I added dairy back into my diet?
YOGURT! Yogurt was one of the foods I missed so much when I went dairy free. Sure, there are yogurt alternatives out there, and I did really enjoy coconut milk yogurt, but nothing beats a cup of vanilla Greek yogurt. I also started eating Siggi’s Icelandic style skyr yogurt and I am in love! It is so delicious! I have heard some people not like it and others love it (it is definitely different from Greek yogurt) and I am definitely a lover of it. Plus it is all simple ingredients and minimal sugar, so that is a plus – some dairy free yogurts had ingredient lists that were a bit too long for my own liking.
Goat cheese too! I started eating goat cheese a while ago since I had learned that it was lower in lactose and a lot of lactose intolerants were able to eat it, so goat cheese has been a favorite of mine for a while. I love adding goat cheese on top of scrambled eggs, on a salad, dipping crackers in it, and even putting it on avocado toast.
I have found that eating full fat dairy products over low fat/ fat free dairy products has really made a difference in my body handling dairy. I try to buy yogurts that are 2% or whole milk and never buy anything fat free. My body handles these full fat products a ton better and I love adding more fat into my diet.
So now you can expect to see more dairy recipes here on the blog (like these Goat Cheese Hummus Deviled Eggs!). Like I said, dairy for me is still in moderation, but I am definitely going to try to create more recipes with it.
I would love to hear from anyone else that has successfully added a food group back into their diet after cutting it out for a while! It has been a positive experience for me and I am excited to enjoy some ice cream a bit more often now ?
- Have you ever reintroduced a food group back into your diet?
- How was your experience?
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