Posted by: dave | October 31, 2011

Hold the milk

I’ve had some sort of a stomach problem the last few weeks, that’s left me fatigued and constantly clutching my aching abdomen. It’s still a bit of a mystery what’s causing it (my hunch would be giardia, but so far I am, thank goodness, missing the key symptom: noxious flatulence). However, after a visit to the doctor on Thursday and pending the results of a couple of tests, I’ve been told to drop the dairy from my diet.

For what it’s worth my equally unscientific hunch is that my problem isn’t lactose intolerance; but the experience of going dairy-free is also proving a lot easier than I’d have expected. Part of this is probably down to the fact that my mum is paying an Anya visit, which means we all get wonderful meals cooked for us. Part of it is also that I actually eat less dairy than my self-image as a cheese-eating surrender monkey would suggest. And part is probably down to the fact that a soy flat white, while no substitute for a proper coffee in beverage terms, does the job pretty well as a caffeine delivery mechanism.

But it’s also making me rethink my attitude to eating dairy. Giving up dairy just isn’t that hard. And it’s a pretty awful industry in a lot of ways: I think a utilitarian, Peter Singer-style argument could even be made that it’s less ethical than certain types of meat-eating.

I’m quite resigned to the ethical minefield you immediately stumble into when you start thinking too much about what you eat, and so I’m fairly sure I’ll be back on the butter once the doctors give me the all-clear. But I might think twice in future about the number of lattes and flat whites I put away over the course of an average day.

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