Quit cheese easily (tips and tricks to go vegan)
How to stop eating cheese. How to go from “I could never give up cheese” to “that was easier than I thought”. Tips on switching from vegetarian to vegan by quitting cheese.
We’ve been duped into thinking we need it
About 65% of the human population is allergic to dairy. Most of which are East Asian, African American and African.
It’s only with a gene mutation that some of the population is able to digest it properly.
We’ve been brainwashed to believe that milk is the only source of calcium and that it “does a body good”. This is no accident.
The billion dollar dairy industry spends millions lobbying the government to put dairy requirements into nutrition guidelines.
The industry also funds and publishes studies, showing dairy in the best possible light, before getting peer reviewed.
The dairy industry also spends millions on advertisements, shoving the message down our throats that milk is healthy, natural and necessary.
Milk is the breast milk of a mother cow that just gave birth. We don’t need to be drinking breast milk as adults.
Cows don’t even drink that shit in adulthood. It’s bizarre when you really think about it.
Needing milk and dairy is not a fact, it’s advertising.
Make a connection and find your WHY
To make any big changes in our lives, we have to have a strong, emotional reason to do it.
Why do you want to make this change?
Is it because you don’t want to pay for the pain and suffering that dairy cows and their offspring go through?
Is it because it’s more environmentally friendly to eat plant milks?
Maybe it’s because you want better health or to clear your skin and you heard that the hormones and antibiotics in dairy can cause skin issues.
Find your reason for wanting to do this, and then KEEP connecting to it.
It’s very easy to get off track if we don’t focus and refocus on our Why.
The dairy industry is cruel
After reading this post, watch the video below for motivation on why the dairy industry sucks.
It’s called Dairy is scary and it’s only 5 minutes and it sums up all of the inherent cruelty involved with dairy products.
It took me a while, but I finally got the vegan lifestyle to stick when I repeatedly watched those hard-to-watch documentaries of the everyday, necessary cruelties in the animal agriculture industry.
In order for us to have milk, newborn cows have to be taken away from their mothers within 24 hours of giving birth.
To make their customers feel better the dairy industry lies and says that this is what is best for the animal. They say the calf runs the risk of infections, or getting trampled on by their mother.
I don’t know about you, but all the large animals in the wild do just fine rearing their children without our interventions.
It is standard practice to take the baby calf away from their mother within 24 hours because they claim that “they form a less strong emotional bond”.
How fucked up is that? Can you imagine getting your child taken away from you a few hours after you just gave birth?
The mother cows moo in distress and pace for days after.
In order to take the baby calf away, farmers sometimes use tractors to keep themselves from getting plowed by the mother cow.
Let’s pretend that every comfort was given to the cows. Even in that perfect situation, we can’t escape that the cows will be turned into hamburgers once they are no longer producing milk.
So, they live a life of having their reproductive organs exploited, their babies getting taken away and then it still ends in a slaughter house .
Because of the demands of constantly being pregnant and then lactating, dairy cows are ‘spent’ after 4-5 years (cows can live to be 20 years old) and get sent to get a bolt gun to the head.
I couldn’t justify putting them through that anymore, just for the sake of my tastebuds. Especially when there is now an abundance of other delicious things I could be eating.
Organic and free range dairy doesn’t do shit to help animals
If you’re vegetarian for the animals (like I was) dairy is still cruel.
Don’t believe the lies about organic or free range being less cruel.
Baby cows still have to get taken away for us to drink their mother’s milk (so the industry makes a profit) and dairy cows are still killed.
The dairy industry is not an animal welfare sanctuary, it’s a business built on exploiting animals.
Making money is their highest priority, not animal welfare. They keep their animals as comfortable and happy as they need to be, in order to make a profit from them.
It takes time to adjust, just keep with it.
Even if you slip up now and then (I slipped up so much in the beginning).
Just get back on the wagon.
Challenge your beliefs and reframe them
Changing your diet is about finding your limiting beliefs and reframing them.
It all really does start in the mind.
Once again, because of the dairy industries’ lobbying, bunk-ass funded studies and advertising campaigns, we have a shit ton of thoughts and beliefs that just aren’t true.
Here are some common false beliefs around dairy and cheese and how to reframe them:
“I can’t live without cheese or my favorite foods”
Reframe it to: I can still eat all of my favorites. I never have to miss out on any food. There is a vegan version of everything. I just have to look for the recipes and alternatives.
“Vegan food is too expensive”
Reframe it to: I’m investing in my future health. Medical bills are expensive. Environmental devastation from the animal agriculture industry is expensive. Yes, some vegan products are expensive, but once you get used to the transition, you tend to eat those special products less and less and rely more on whole plant foods, which are some of the cheapest foods on the planet.
“I won’t get enough calcium”
Reframe it to: The calcium myth was put into my head from the dairy industries’ advertising campaigns. Many foods have calcium in them such as dark leafy greens, dried figs, soybeans, fortified orange juice and plant milks and fortified whole grains.
“I don’t want to feel left out at dinner parties”
Yes, the initial transition is a bit awkward. But I promise, once you stay strong and politely inform your friends and family, they eventually come around and may even cook you food. Offer to bring your own dish, or send them a recipe. People get over it after a little while and it becomes less of a big deal. Host your own dinner party to show your friends and family how delicious foods are without dairy.
“I only buy organic, free range, grass fed, local dairy”
Sure, this stuff may have less antibiotics, but it still has hormones. Milk is full of hormones from the mother cow being pregnant. Cheese has one of the highest concentrations of estrogen. On top of that, baby cows are still taken from their mothers, and cows are still killed after they’re no longer useful.
“Dairy doesn’t kill or hurt the animals”
Once again baby cows are still taken from their mothers, and cows are still killed after they’re no longer useful. The dairy industry is a business, not an animal welfare sanctuary. Don’t be fooled.
“Almond milk and plant milks are just as bad for the environment
Yes, almonds use a lot of water, but even the environmentally “worst” plant milk is way better for the planet than raising animals:
- When we raise animals for food we have to water and grow the food to feed them in addition to watering the cows themselves (90% more water usage than growing plants to milk)
- Then we have to deal with them shitting everywhere and their shit running off into streams and causing e-coli outbreaks on spinach and other vegetables.
- Then, they spew methane (which is a greenhouse gas that is way more potent than co2) into the air from their burps and farts and shits…… You see what I’m getting at? Growing plants to eat doesn’t do half of that shit.
- According to this study, if you want the most sustainable plant milk, go with organic oat milk.
Read this article next, from New York Times about how our diet affects the planet and which foods are worst (spoiler: it’s meat, eggs and dairy)
Replace one ingredient at a time (don’t stop until you find your favorites)
Don’t overwhelm yourself by doing this overnight. Replace one thing in your fridge at a time.
If you don’t like one brand or flavor, try another. There are endless options now.
You can order things online, like from Thrive market, if you don’t have a well stocked store near you.
But, you’ll be surprised, most grocery stores offer plant based milks and cheeses now.
Learn where the plant based options are stocked in your grocery store.
Sometimes the vegan foods are in their own sections, so make sure to look around the store a little bit or ask an employee.
My favorite vegan dairy alternatives
My favorite vegan cheese brands:
Violife (you will flip over their vegan feta)
Miyokos (it’s expensive so I save this for holidays)
Daiya (used to hate this brand, but then they improved their recipe)
My favorite vegan coffee creamers:
Oatly barista blend creamer
Full fat canned coconut milk (it’s doesn’t really taste like coconuts, it’s just super creamy)
Silk half and half
Silk heavy whipping cream
So Delicious coconut milk coffee creamer (it doesn’t taste like coconuts)
Califa farms barista blend coffee creamer
My favorite plant based milks:
- Organic Soy milk is my OG favorite, doesn’t even matter what brand. I use this for cereals and chai lattés.
Unsweetened plain Oat milk is amazing for cooking savory foods, when you need to add cream but don’t want a weird after taste. It’s amazing for adding to mashed potatoes, mac and cheese and alfredo sauces.
I don’t really care for the taste of almond milk, but some people rave about it. Just try all of them until you land on one you love.
Favorite vegan heavy cream alternatives:
Silk heavy whipping cream
Full fat canned coconut milk
Unsweetened cashew yogurt
Soaking and blending cashews with various seasonings, depending on the recipe. Blended cashews can make anything from cheese and alfredos, to creamy soups and sauces.
My favorite vegan ice creams:
Ben and Jerry’s has a whole line of dairy free ice creams with creative flavors
So delicious is also very good
I enjoy ice creams made from coconut, oat or cashew milk. There are so many vegan ice cream options, you just have to look.
Make sure to pick up your free guide on my 6 favorite creamy vegan recipes that even cheese addicts will love.
Don’t expect alternatives to taste the exact same as dairy
If you go in with super high expectations, you will constantly be disappointed.
Yes, vegan cheeses have come a long way.
But when you compare them directly to cheese, you will be disappointed.
Create a separate space in you mind for these cheeses.
Eventually, you will see that they’re tasty in their own ways.
Your tastebuds will acclimate
Your tastebuds will change and eventually you won’t crave these foods as much, or not at all.
I accidentally ate a bite of cheese pizza last year and I couldn’t get over how sour and “off” it tasted.
I realized quickly that they had messed up my order and instead of using Daiya cheese, they put cow cheese on it.
My tastebuds had changed completely and got used to the taste of vegan cheese instead.
The cow cheese tasted weird to me, just like how vegan cheese may taste weird to you in the beginning.
When you crave cheese, you’re craving fat (add some fat to your meals)
If meals are unsatisfying, add some fat to it. You can go for whole fats like nuts, seeds, avocado, olives, tahini and nut butters.
Or, you can go for the vegan versions of dairy products like vegan mayo, vegan cheese, vegan sour cream, vegan cream cheese, vegan ice cream and many more
But don’t try to be too healthy in the beginning. It’s stressful enough changing your diet and going against the mainstream. Make it as easy as possible in the beginning.
No, it’s not great to live off of cheese alternatives and vegan ice cream, but they’re great for satiating cravings in the beginning.
Easy dairy free recipes to get you started
Creamy orzo with roasted vegetables (my brother’s favorite recipe)
Creamy smoked gouda mac and cheese (my most popular recipe)
- Dairy free mac and cheese
If you’d like more recipes, sign up for your free guide below
To sum it all up
Quitting cheese and dairy all begins with your mindset. Take a look at your limiting beliefs and reframe them. More than half of the population is allergic to dairy, and we’ve been duped into thinking we need it for calcium. The dairy industry is cruel AF and it’s unnecessary when there are so many alternatives now.
Replace one product at a time until you find your favorites
When you crave cheese you’re craving fat. Eat some fat in your meals
Your tastebuds will acclimate
Don’t compare plant based products to animal products. They’re good in their own way.
Organic and free range means nothing in terms of helping animals
The animal agriculture industry is a business, not an animal welfare sanctuary
Read the list above for my favorite plant based milks, cheeses and ice creams to get started.Loved the post? Save it for later by pinning the image below