Image Credit: REX

Whether it is because of intolerances, ethical concerns or taste preferences, the concept of avoiding dairy in one’s diet is getting increasingly common. Also, Canada’s new food guide no longer makes it necessary to drink milk every day. Gulf News spoke to readers about the changing perspective on this dairy staple.

Dyvine Samuel Image Credit: Supplied

A glass a day

Without milk, something seems to be missing

For me, a cup of tea with milk or a spoon of yogurt for lunch is a must every day. Not having any of these just does not make my day. Something seems to be missing.

Whether drinking cow’s milk is a concept to think about, I’m really not aware about it. As long as I’m not allergic to dairy products, I’m happy that I’m having them regularly.

Of course, there are certain people who might be allergic to certain dairy products and yes, they should find some alternatives that provide the same nutrients. You need balanced food intake to lead a healthy lifestyle and by not having a main portion of nutrients, it can be a cause for concern.

The bottom line is that there are many options for substituting common dairy foods. You can make homemade versions of cheese, ice cream, sour cream and more. You can also find them at the grocery stores. Most are made from plants based ingredients, such as soy, oats, nuts or coconut. They are not necessarily direct substitutes nutritionally, though, so make sure you read the labels.

From Ms Dyvine Samuel

Dubai resident

Natalie Verghese Image Credit: Supplied

Times are changing

People are opting for alternatives

There are two main reasons I think people are giving up cow’s milk: It is seen by some people because of research that is being promoted, as a cause for acne and bloating. As a result, celebrities are usually seen sharing and promoting this opinion, which is influencing the lives of their followers.

I personally do not think it is an essential part of an adult’s diet as there are many other forms of food that people can get their nutrition intake from.

Quite possibly people’s intake of cow’s milk can reduce after infancy as they would then be consuming a number of nutrients through solid food, which could replace their need for a high intake of milk as it is needed on the contrary for children.

Moreover, these days cow’s milk has a number of replacements, which could be a reason as to why people don’t make cow’s milk an essential part of their diet.

Some of these replacements are coconut milk, almond milk and cashew milk. Nonetheless, I believe people need more accessible options offered at a cheaper rate.

From Ms Natalie Verghese

Public relations professional and food blogger based in Dubai

Saumya Mishra Image Credit: Supplied

Healthy choice

Milk is a beneficial addition to one’s diet

Drinking milk can be an archaic concept, which has evolved over a period of time. Humans have genetically adapted to consume dairy, so much so that it comes naturally to them. As they evolved, they developed a better gut and enzymes to digest milk.

Milk as a beverage has a unique array of nutrients to it. It is packed with vital nutrients like calcium, phosphorus, B vitamins, potassium and protein.

Time and again research proves that having milk as a part of a balanced diet may prevent osteoporosis, bone fractures and even help you maintain healthy weight.

But, there have been serious concerns on the ethical practices in the dairy industry while rearing and milking the animal, which essentially alters the quality of milk we get from them.

Dairy products vary greatly in quality and health effects depending on how the milk producing animals were raised and how the dairy was processed.

For example, dairy from grass fed or pasture-fed cows is high in fat soluble vitamins and has bio-active fatty acids, which helps in easier digestion or absorption.

From Ms Saumya Mishra

Nutritionist based in Dubai

Poll results

Gulf News asked: Do you avoid dairy products in your diet?

Yes: 30%

No: 70%

Have your say

Why are people increasingly omitting cow’s milk from their diets?

To share your views, write to us at readers@gulfnews.com