How to Shop Dairy Free

My favorite food growing up was milk. I could easily drink milk all day if offered. Yogurt was also a constant companion. I really never thought I had any issues with it, bloating and gas were just normal for me. I also struggled with acne, asthma, and sinus infections throughout my childhood. Sounds fun, doesn’t it? I never correlated dairy as a root cause of any of my ailments until I had children. Each of my kids had milk protein allergies as babies so I had to eliminate all dairy.  My son was 8 months old when I found out I was pregnant with my daughter. I breastfed both of them for over a year.  I thought I could go back on dairy after I was done breastfeeding and immediately, my skin regressed to my teenage years. Of course, my hormones were all over the place so I attributed it to that. It took me almost 3 years to figure out, dairy was part of my problem after going on an anti-inflammatory diet as a last resort. I really haven’t looked back since. It’s a way of life now. Do I miss dairy? Yes! I love it, but it’s just not worth it for me. I am one of those who won’t have an anaphylactic reaction but I have a delayed reaction. I don’t get sick as often, and I don’t have horrible sinus headaches anymore. My skin is better than it’s been in a long time.

Grocery shopping dairy free can be like an obstacle course at first. You have to become a label detective and study the ingredient list. Even if a product states its non dairy, like non dairy creamers, it can still contain dairy in the form of whey or casein. Make sure you double-check any label for sources of milk. The Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network recommends to pay close attention to are the following products at the supermarket:

Luncheon meats

Hot Dogs

Sausages

Artificial butter flavor

Chocolate

Caramel Candies

Nisin

Non Dairy Products

Margarine

Baked Goods

Look out for these dairy derived ingredients on the label.

Resources

Some resources for dairy free grocery shopping are:

http://www.foodallergy.org

http://www.godairyfree.org

My Pinterest boards:

Allergen Friendly Brands

Dairy Free Recipes

Also, check with your local supermarket to see if they have a dietitian on staff who can help you.

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Categories: Shopping with Health Conditions

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