Depending on who you listen to, which new emerging health study you see, or which diet you follow, dairy is either good or bad for you. Dairy doesn’t fall under the healthy food umbrella, but many people grew up with the notion that drinking milk was the only way to have strong bones. This theory has been debunked, but people still feel the need to include dairy in their diet, despite what it does to their bodies.
Millions of Americans are lactose intolerant, but they consume dairy without a care. The fact of the matter is that 50 million Americans are lactose intolerant and even more are sensitive to dairy products. Most people are unaware of the fact that their bodies can’t properly digest lactose, which is a sugar that occurs in cow’s milk. Humans have lactase, which is an enzyme that breaks down and digests lactose. The production of the lactase enzyme actually lessens or stops as you age into adulthood. When the body doesn’t product lactase and you eat dairy, it’s easy to experience bloating, stomach pain, nausea, diarrhea, and other digestive issues.
Unfortunately, the side effects of dairy consumption go beyond stomachaches or bloating. Over a long period of time, lactose has the potential to cause the following side effects on the body.
What you put in your body influences the appearance and overall health of your skin. It’s the largest organ in the body, so it tries to get rid of whatever your internal organs cannot do on their own. If you cannot digest and eliminate dairy products, the skin will try to get rid of them. This can lead to dry skin, acne, splotchy skin, or areas of redness. Studies have shown that eliminating dairy from your diet helps to improve the overall appearance of the skin.
An Increased Risk Of Cancer
Depending on the dairy products you consume, you may suffer from long-term consequences. Some studies have linked high dairy consumption to an increased risk of prostate and breast cancers. It should be noted that these studies were conducted by epidemiologists, meaning they looked at trends in dairy consumption in populated areas over time. Other studies found that dairy consumption was linked to higher rates of colon and testicular cancers.
As we’ve detailed in this article, lactose can cause bloating, gas, and stomach pain, all of which are minor stomach troubles. When you eat a lot of dairy, it’s possible that it will damage or inflame the gut lining, which can lead to leaky gut syndrome. Once the gut lining is damaged, the body has an increased risk of developing chronic inflammation and autoimmune disorders. Some studies found that people who eliminated dairy from their diet had a much easier time digesting food. This is primarily because about 75% of adults around the world are intolerant to lactose.
Inflammation is the immune system’s natural response to an irritant in the body. This is a healthy response, but it becomes unhealthy when the response lingers, leaving the body in a state of constant alert, or chronically inflamed. Dairy is very acidic and consuming it regularly can make it hard for the body to remain in an alkaline state. The natural acids in milk, for example, can cause calcium deposits to accumulate in joints, increasing the risk of arthritis and inflammation. The body has an easier time absorbing the calcium from plant-based foods, most of which are alkaline and fight inflammation.
Excess Mucus Production
Dairy contains casein, which is a protein that promotes the formation of mucus in the body. People who are more sensitive to dairy commonly experience congestion after consuming dairy products. This is even more detrimental to your health if you are sick. Casein will make it more difficult for the body to expel mucus.