Thursday, January 19, 2012

I'm Starting a Lactose Free Diet - And I Hate It

This is the hardest and most hateful One Small Green Change yet. Yep, worse than that first go around with the bad brand of recycled content sand toilet paper.

This may not technically count as a green change. Many people adopt a vegetarian or vegan diet for environmental reasons; I am trying to go lactose free for pure heath reasons. I have had upset stomachs and digestive issues for as long as I can remember. Turns out I’m lactose intolerant. 

I did not do much with that information, except change my diet to incorporate less processed food, and more grains, vegetables, and use meat as a condiment in recipes. That change got me off the prescriptions. I still ate ice cream, yogurt, and cheese with abandon. I seriously and most definitely love cheese.

It’s only in the last year that I switched to drinking soy, almond, rice, or coconut milk largely due to the Silk to Milk Challenge and buying milk alternatives for less thanks to my coupon database.

I didn’t realize how much better I felt until late December when after several lactose free weeks due to traveling and such, I ate brie during a Lazy Budget Chef wine review. Later that evening I felt like I had a gut full of fire because of the cheese.


I’m fortunate that this isn’t a life threatening food allergy. I’m learning that I can tolerate some foods with lactose more than others. I’m also discovering that lactose can sneak into food that isn’t dairy based like the turkey lunch meat in my refrigerator right now. Aw, man I have to give up sandwiches too?!

Lunches are going to be the hardest part of this exercise. On the days I don’t heat up leftovers for lunch, I make a sandwich. I don’t have a lot of time to cook a real lunch. I need something quick.

I could use your help one this one. I need food ideas and recipes, particularly lunches. My lunches are a little boring and less filling than they used to be – which leads to extra snacking and that’s something I want to avoid too.

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