Opinion · vegan

‘Nutritionists Say ‘Baffling’ Official Guidance To Halve Dairy Food Intake Puts Public Health At Risk,’ // My Thoughts As A Vegan

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‘Government’s official advisory body on diet, says reducing milk and cheese is vital to cut obesity.’

This is what I’ve woken up to this morning and I am furious of the media for opposing this idea. The post on the Telegraph website titled, ‘Nutritionists say ‘baffling’ official guidance to halve dairy food intake puts public health at risk,’ is indeed baffling me.

As a vegan, I am happy that it is being suggested that people eat less dairy products as this equals healthier people, less environmental impact and most importantly, less animal suffering. The dairy industry is cruel. I did not even know anything about this when I was a vegetarian but now thanks to the internet and documentaries, things have begun to change.

However, how the media is portraying this news is not in a positive light. Dairy products are full of saturated fat and are bad for the heart. My resting heart rate has gone down considerably since quitting dairy and I feel a lot less out of breath without increasing the amount of exercise I do.  Drinking another mammals milk is not good for you. We are weaned at a young age from drinking our own mother’s milk just to be switched to milk that is meant for growing calves. We no longer need it and we definitely do not need it from another animal.

It says, ‘The move was heavily criticised by nutritionists, MPs and the dairy industry, who accused PHE of putting public health at risk with its “baffling” advice.’ Of course the dairy industry are going to have a huge problem with this. This is business for them. They make their money by promoting a diet that includes dairy. It is cringe worthy that the Telegraph even wrote the dairy industry in there. Surely anyone could see the reasons why they would say that.

The article then says,’They say the new guidance does not provide for enough calcium or iodine in people’s diet, essential for healthy bones and brain development.’ The average British adult does not eat five portions of fruit or day so probably relies on these vitamins. Eating a healthy vegan diet full of nuts, seeds, beans, vegetables, fruit and just good whole foods will ensure that we have plenty of nutrients (need to take a supplement or have fortified foods for B12 – found in soil) and reduce obesity and all the risks that come along with it – diabetes, heart disease, cancer and many more. The idea that we need milk to get calcium is a myth. You can find out more about this by watching Forks Over Knives which I have linked below, but basically osteoporosis is most commonly found in countries where animal products are most consumed. Animal products are acidic on the body which makes bones leach out calcium, depleting levels. Milk also decreases iron absorption in the body – many omnivores and vegetarians are iron deficient because of this. I was anaemic several times as an omnivore and vegetarian because I was eating a lot of yoghurt and milk so not absorbing iron properly.

Plant based iodine sources include baked potatoes, seaweed, fortified iodised salt, Himalayan crystal salt, dried prunes, navy beans, bananas, canned corn, cranberries, green beans, white bread and many many more so that argument is also invalid.

And these comment angers me the most, ‘Vegetable crops are harder for the body to digest than dairy food’ and ‘it’s simply not realistic to suggest people can get what they need from other food types.’ They are suggesting that it is more important to get our nutrients from dairy products. These nutrients are eaten by the animal from plants, processed inside of them and then we consume them. Surely it is better to get the nutrients from their natural source? How can they promote dairy products over vegetables? Everyone knows that vegetables are healthier than dairy products. I do not know about you but when I ate dairy products they would sit heavy in my stomach and take a while to digest but when I eat vegetables they get digested a lot quicker and my stomach feels so much better for it. My energy levels have shot up with the influx of fruit and vegetables – not how I felt when I was eating dairy. Many people suffer from lactose intolerance, IBS and other digestive disorders – they cannot digest dairy products properly but have no problems with plants that grow out of the ground.

“It is possible for vegans to get their calcium and other nutrients from other sources,” she said, “but it takes a lot of input from dieticians.” No, it just takes a little research, which is easy with the internet, and a little interest in your health.

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The media are well known for scaremongering. Yet the comments made in the article are what people actually believe as they have grown up being told by the dairy industry that you need to drink milk to get enough calcium. It makes people think that eating a plant based diet is not good for you when there is so much evidence that a plant based diet is the healthiest diet. Do not believe everything the media tells you. The nutritionists who have spoke are likely connected to the dairy industry and if you cannot figure out why that is a problem then you need to have a serious think!

Sources:

www.telegraph.co.uk/news/health/12204366/Nutritionists-say-baffling-official-guidance-to-halve-dairy-food-intake-puts-public-health-at-risk.html

“bembu.com/iodine-rich-foods

“www.theveganrd.com/2013/08/calcium-and-protein-and-bone-health-in-vegans.html

“Forks Over Knives documentary – watch online for free

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