How NOT to Lose that Dairy Feeling in Your Mediterranean Diet
By: Joe Martinez, RPh, PDE, PPC, Founder and CCO, HMS
Contributor: Caraline Watkins
For health reasons, have you opted to cut out high fat dairy and in its place try a Mediterranean diet? And in doing so, have you lost that loving feeling? Are you mourning your dairy, its taste and flavor? Fret not. There are many ways to incorporate alternatives into your diet, enjoy the parts of dairy you love most AND stay on track with your diet and not cheat! In fact, 65% of the population have troubles digesting dairy so there are a lot of alternatives our hte for you! Here’s how to get your dairy fix withOUT the pitfalls.
The recommendations for the Mediterranean diet include choosing lower in fat dairy products and using oils instead of butter. Some low fat dairy options include non-fat milk, fat free yogurt, and low-in-fat cheese.
Thankfully you’ll find in most grocery store, there are also excellent ‘non-dairy’ milk and cheese options that serve as very acceptable alternatives while still satisfying your dairy cravings. The next time you go to your favorite coffee shop, try a non-fat milk, almond, or maybe even coconut milk in your latte. Coconut milk adds a tantalizing creaminess to any coffee drink that will certainly perk up your morning routine. Original and flavored creamers of these non-dairy options are also widely available and would be a wonderful choice for someone looking to try more variety in their morning cup of joe.
Some other alternatives to dairy would be using avocado as a creamy topping on toast. Avocados are also a very important food in the Mediterranean diet and have many health benefits. It is also an easily accessible food that can be used in a variety of ways including as a substitute for mayonnaise in many dishes. Instead of butter, try cooking your eggs and sautéing your vegetables with olive oil or coconut oil, which, will also add an extra wow factor. If you need something creamy to go on your sandwich you can try a low-fat mayonnaise to avoid dairy but still get that creamy texture.
Got a sweet tooth or yearning for that midnight bowl of ice cream? There are many great ice cream alternatives to help you get your fix. Ice cream options with almond milk, rice milk, cashew milk, coconut milk, and soy milk are becoming more and more popular. They can also be found in most grocery stores. As an FYI, it can be a little difficult at first to find a brand that gives you that familiar texture that you’re used to with dairy options. But keep the faith because the marketplace is packed with options that even some of your favorite dairy brands are now offering ‘non’-dairy alternatives.
Hungry now for some non-diary dairy, but don’t feel like cooking?
How about one of these delicious meals from Healthy Meals Supreme?