Dairy Detox Week 3

Hey there! If you’re just joining us welcome! See “a reasonable resolution” and “the deal with dairy” to catch up on the purpose of this blog and research behind this month’s detox.

Surprises from Chile

I hope all your lifestyle changes are going well and at your pace!

My husband had some family fly in from Chile over the past few weeks, and it has been wonderful visiting with them. Of course they brought presents, including Chilean chocolate and other dairy containing items… YUM….

Lifestyles changes and habits that need to be broken consist of a series of steps, decisions made every day as they arise. I’m proud to say we’re doing well, with just a few exceptions that we feel don’t hurt the bigger picture.

It’s also difficult for people to get used to your changes, a new you is an adjustment for them too.  Family will continue to offer us meat and dairy which makes the change considerably more difficult; we want to be polite and respectful but want to practice discipline and create life long change. Over time people accept the change and support you either way.

Tell us about your progress, the ups AND downs!

Spaghetti Squash

Today we ate spaghetti squash with an organic tomato sauce from the organic market in our neighborhood.  Very simple recipe we’ve had before and enjoy. The squash itself has the consistency of angel hair and pairs well with sauce or vegetables. We’ve also added garlic and chickpeas in the past which we find delicious.

The squash is very simple to prepare, cut into two halves and remove the seeds and loose strings. Place both halves into a baking sheet in an inch of water.

It is done when a fork can pass through the outside easily. The meaty insides (the “spaghetti”) scrape out easily all the way to the grind and 1 half = one serving. simple and quick!  Husband, 1 year old and picky sister approved!



Next week I’ll be making a pizza as well as testing out a cake for my son’s 1st birthday party in February, dairy free, whole grain, processed sugar free! I connected with a fellow blogger who is helping me with the recipe and will be featured along with the cake recipe! find her here at http://www.thenourishedchick.com/

Our kitchen is finally almost completely void of processed sugar and ready for February’s cleanse! We’ll dig into the topic more next weekend, in the meantime I’m gathering relevant scholarly articles and helpful resources for the detox.  My sugar levels have not been good recently and I’m ready to nix the processed culprit altogether and start feeling better and protecting my pregnancy!

I’ve also connected with the owner of Absolute Organics, an organic local produce delivery company in our area, and plan to start our service back up and feature an interview with her over the next couple weeks so stay tuned! If you’re in the Charlotte and surrounding area you can find her services here at http://www.theabsoluteorganics.com/

Thanks for stopping in! If you come across any recipes share them with us below! As always stay healthy and best of wishes in all your personal endeavors!

The Quezadas

Dairy Detox Week 2

If you’re just joining us welcome! See “a reasonable resolution” and “the deal with dairy” to catch up on the purpose of this blog and story behind this month’s detox.

Bumps in the Road

Nobody is perfect and mistakes will be made. Sometimes a server will get an order wrong, such as the cheese free burrito we ordered that was served to us smothered in cheese this week.

Week 1 was almost a complete success of will power.  I’ll admit I caved once for chocolate. Knowingly.

My husband made it the entire first week, then today on day 2 of week 2, ordered an item he forgot had dairy baked in. Whoops.

A Protein Salad

Its difficult ordering salads if restaurants don’t offer a “build your own” option. Many salads are pre-mixed with cheese, and many dressings, including my former favorite Caesar, have dairy. We did find at our local organic marketplace a brand of dressings that are tastier than their dairy counterparts for when the usual vinegar and lemon juice isn’t quite doing it for our taste buds:

Salad-MAIN3 I highly recommend this brand along with the soy free Vegenaise.

I enjoy salads anyway, but pregnancy causes me to avert my nose to baked foods and crave salads even more than usual, so I’ve been making them a lot lately.


For today’s salad I cooked chickpeas for protein and tossed with dark spring leafy greens, ground flax, chia seeds, apple cider vinegar and Himalayan sea salt.

The ingredients I used are packed full of benefits, such as macro-nutrients that feed your cells, antioxidants, fiber, vitamins and other goodness. I’ve attached some useful resources that go deeper into the benefits of today’s ingredients in the references.

Filtering through the Research

Scientific studies are always being conducted on the effects of the food we eat. Correlations can be made, benefits and dangers discovered, every day. For example, researchers go back and forth on whether or not to eat eggs and soy so much it gives many of us whiplash. So we need to do the best with the knowledge we have.  My basic rule of thumb I feel I can trust, if it is a plant, eat it. If it was made in a plant, don’t.

I want to stay focused on this months cleanse, so in regards to dairy my husband and I have discussed what our rule on dairy will be after the detox. I’ve also heard from many people this week on their feelings and research they’ve found on the topic. Personally, I’ve found the right substitutes to be able to just keep dairy out of my diet after this month is through. When I am craving pizza we have the local restaurant Sprouts that offers vegan pizzas as well as the frozen Tofurky pizza we enjoy.

For those who are not ready, or convinced, to completely give dairy the pink slip, keeping it in moderation seems to be a safe alternative.  From what studies are showing, dairy in moderation (cited less than 5% of overall diet, as opposed to every meal), minimally processed & from local organic sources isn’t correlated with the high risks that are attached to high consumption of dairy processed in factory farms and dairy product processing plants (I’ll discuss deeper into animals on a different month) . These risks do not include allergies and intolerance, which are present in many people in regards to animal milk regardless of amount or type of consumption. (references and more information below)

Interestingly, the type of animal the milk comes from seems to affect human reaction to it. Camel milk, for example, seems to be the easiest animal milk for humans to process, digestible even for the lactose intolerant. The reason for this seems to be the different biology of the animals, such as cows having 4 stomachs to the 1 stomach of the other. there are no camels near us but Ill continue researching the different animal milks to try.

If you find a credible and interesting resource on this or any topic discussed, please share in the comment section!

Reader Challenge

Did you decide to take a mini challenge? What was it and what substitutions did you try? Let us know in the comment section!

Thanks for stopping in! As always stay healthy and best of wishes in all your personal endeavors!

The Quezada Family


Chia seeds benefits, Dr Lisa Samuel, 3-4-13, http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-7928/the-amazing-health-benefits-of-chia-seeds.html

Flax seeds benefits, reviewed by Megan Ware RDN LD, 8-30-14, http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/263405.php

Chickpeas benefits, reviewed by Megan Ware RDN LD, 9-15-14, http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/280244.php

“The health benefits of dark leafy green vegetables” Ingrid Adams, University of Kentucky, doc. 5-2013, http://www2.ca.uky.edu/agc/pubs/FCS3/FCS3567/FCS3567.pdf

The Deal with Dairy

Isn’t Dairy Good for You?

Dairy is long believed, and advertised, to be the “perfect food”.  The USDA campaigns began in the 1920’s in America, the accepted idea was that the Calcium would prevent osteoporosis and cow milk itself was better than human breast milk.

In fact dairy is the perfect food, for baby calves, that is until they’re weaned. The Casein in dairy is highly addictive, great for baby calves, meant to help calves to drink more and increase in body weight; but not for humans who consume increasing amounts of processed dairy foods.

Research now shows Calcium from dairy does not help strengthen bones, and countries with high dairy consumption have a higher corresponding rate of hip fractures and Osteoporosis.

Dairy is also inflammatory and acid forming in the human body. It is shown to block nutrient absorption, such as Iron and is linked to iron-deficiency anemia.

Dairy naturally contains hormones, even from organic sources, and dairy is linked to many illnesses. See the references at the bottom of this post for more research including studies, articles and documentaries that go deeper into the truth about dairy.

All comments and insights are welcome as I am still researching this topic.

What about Calcium?

Calcium is found in many easily digested plants, such as almonds, kale, oranges, Collard greens, broccoli, spinach, figs etc…  In a 6 oz serving of fresh squeezed orange juice, for example, you’ll receive about 25-30% of your daily recommended intake of Calcium. You shouldn’t have any issue getting your daily Calcium intake with healthy servings of vegetables, fruits, nuts and legumes.

So, about Substitutions

Finding substitutions (for cheese, milk, yogurt) was difficult, especially for the dairy lovers in our family. The easiest substitution was Almond milk, I found it tasty and made the switch years ago with ease, and it contains Calcium and Protein.

Cheese however was more difficult. Our family LOVES cheese. Gouda, cheese puffs, Doritos, on pizza, in quesadillas… many times we (or I alone) have attempted dairy free and “made exceptions” for pizza … or Gouda…

Today the three of us, well technically the four of us, went to the organic market near our house.  It has a cafe “Sprouts” located on the bottom floor that we enjoy eating at.

I forgot to request dairy free, and my vege burger and whole grain pizza both had cheese.  I was rather embarrassed and luckily the server brought them back, dairy free. They were delicious. My husband laughed, he had remembered to request no cheese on his Cobb.


We have found many substitutes that are tasty, such as “Tofurky pizza” (gluten free and vegan and yummy), and some that are awful (an Alfredo sauce that I dare not even name) to be truthful. But the interesting thing is when we go without dairy, we don’t miss it.  There are plenty of delicious foods we are still discovering and trying.


I’ve found when you tell yourself “I can’t have…” you feel as if you’re missing out.  Instead, tell yourself “I don’t want…”, and have good reasons, your health is always a good one! Focus on what you can have and the positive aspects of your diet and there will be less temptation to fall back into old patterns.

Today’s recipe attempt

While at the market I picked up a few ingredients for a nice soup (my go to meal on a chilly rainy day). It was a very simple Quinoa, lentils and split pea soup. I added some tomatoes and greens and spiced to taste with garlic, sea salt and chilli.

I always make enough to last a few days, As a stay at home mom/wife and part time photographer I don’t always have time to cook, so its nice to have leftovers.

This meal was warm and filling. Even Sammy (my oldest at 11 months) found it tasty.


Mini Challenge!

Maybe you aren’t quite ready for a complete dairy detox, maybe choose one dairy product in your diet to replace with a non dairy or plant based substitute! Let us know what it is!

Thanks for stopping in! As always stay healthy and best of wishes in all your personal endeavors!

The Quezada Family


“Forks Over Knives” documentary

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-mark-hyman/dairy-free-dairy-6-reason_b_558876.html” Dr Mark Hyman MD on the dangers of dairy 11/17/2011

(i) Feskanich D, Willett WC, Stampfer MJ, Colditz GA. Milk, dietary calcium, and bone fractures in women: a 12-year prospective study. Am J Public Health. 1997 Jun;87(6):992-7.

(ii) Feskanich D, Willett WC, Colditz GA. Calcium, vitamin D, milk consumption, and hip fractures: a prospective study among postmenopausal women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2003 Feb;77(2):504-11.

(iii) Tseng M, Breslow RA, Graubard BI, Ziegler RG. Dairy, calcium, and vitamin D intakes and prostate cancer risk in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Epidemiologic Follow-up Study cohort. Am J Clin Nutr. 2005 May;81(5):1147-54.

(iv) Huncharek M, Muscat J, Kupelnick B. Colorectal cancer risk and dietary intake of calcium, vitamin D, and dairy products: a meta-analysis of 26,335 cases from 60 observational studies. Nutr Cancer. 2009;61(1):47-69.

(v) Brannon PM, Carpenter TO, Fernandez JR, Gilsanz V, Gould JB, Hall KE, Hui SL, Lupton JR, Mennella J, Miller NJ, Osganian SK, Sellmeyer DE, Suchy FJ, Wolf MA. NIH Consensus Development Conference Statement: Lactose Intolerance and Health. NIH Consens State Sci Statements. 2010 Feb 24;27(2).

(vi) Bartley J, McGlashan SR. Does milk increase mucus production? Med Hypotheses. 2010 Apr;74(4):732-4.

(vii) Luopajärvi K, Savilahti E, Virtanen SM, Ilonen J, Knip M, Akerblom HK, Vaarala O. Enhanced levels of cow’s milk antibodies in infancy in children who develop type 1 diabetes later in childhood. Pediatr Diabetes. 2008 Oct;9(5):434-41.

(viii) El-Hodhod MA, Younis NT, Zaitoun YA, Daoud SD. Cow’s milk allergy related pediatric constipation: Appropriate time of milk tolerance. Pediatr Allergy Immunol. 2009 Jun 25.

“Natures perfect food: how milk became Americas drink” E. MNelanie DuPuis on dairy campaigns 2002

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-8646/the-dangers-of-dairy.html” Dr Amy Myers the Dangers of Dairy April 10 2013

A Reasonable Resolution?


It’s a new year filled with motivation and determination to meet those resolutions we all decided on last minute yesterday…  I’m inspired, not only for my family but for everyone setting out to better themselves today.

There’s really no secret to successful self improvement. Personally I need complete inspiration and all the scientific facts before I even consider a life change. Once I’ve decided to make a move, I need minimal accountability and maximum self discipline. I’ve found doing things for the sake of others does not lead to permanent change, but doing something for myself usually has lasting effects.

Plan for plant based eating

My diet has fallen on the range of crazed grass eater end of the spectrum and at times the sneaking chocolate when no one was looking sugar addict end of the spectrum. I have had increasing amounts of success leading up to today, but this year, with my first born beginning to eat solid food and another on the way (3 months along), I am ready for lasting change that will positively affect my children and those around me.

This had to be something the whole house agreed on, and it took some time for my husband and I to get on the same page. Today, after much consideration and preparation we are ready to begin.

On our journey to vitality we will begin by slowly removing from our diet that which is toxic (in any fashion) to our bodies. We chose not to go cold turkey on everything and I’ve had success with slow step changes in the past. We will begin each month in preparation for a detox from a specific toxic food like product, I’ll share scientific journals and research for each toxin cleanse. Throughout the month I’ll share photos, recipes, weekly reflections and mini challenges.

Let’s begin

Originally we were to begin with a processed sugar detox, then after inventory of our house we found it to be full of all sugar products.. So we’re beginning with dairy and while we’re detoxing from dairy this month we’ll be slowly ridding our house of all processed sugar in preparation for next month.

Tomorrow marks the first day of our dairy free lives and I’ll get more into the reason behind this change and share substitutions and recipes as we go along.

We’ll see you tomorrow, wish us determination and discipline!  I’m rooting for all your endeavors and resolutions!

The Quezada Family

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