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Kick Your Dairy Habit With These 5 Vegan Alternatives

If you’ve spent any time researching vegan diets, you already know about the benefits of removing meat and animal products from your diet. Vegan diets can help you lose weight, feel great, and improve your gastrointestinal and heart health. But there’s always one animal product that’s the hardest for people to give up. For some, it’s steak. For others, it’s chicken. But for many Americans, the prospect of kicking dairy seems impossible. 


Whether you’re trying to keep kosher, maintain a lactose-free diet, or simply eat healthily, we’re here to provide you with five vegan alternatives that’ll make you forget all about dairy. For a professional who can help you on your journey towards a healthier lifestyle, consult Jesal V. Popat, M.D., FACC, the top cardiologist in Tampa. 

1. Milk

Millions of Americans wouldn’t dream of starting their mornings off without milk in their coffee. Don’t be like them. By now you’ve surely heard of soy milk, but what about almond milk, rice milk, or hemp milk? These alternatives taste like the real thing minus the guilt that comes with drinking dairy. And the best part? Milk substitutes like Almond Breeze actually have as much calcium as regular milk. 


Related: How a Plant-Based Diet Can Improve Your Heart Health

2. Cheese

Although it may be delicious, cheese is just not good for you. Fortunately, you don’t have to give up cheese; you have to give up dairy-based cheese. Vegan cheese like Miyoko’s Cheese Wheel has come a long way in recent years and, like milk substitutes, is readily available in a grocery store near you. But be sure to read the label! Some non-dairy cheeses actually contain small amounts of milk byproducts. If you’re intent on going vegan, look for rice milk cheese or vegan almond milk cheese the next time you’re out shopping. 

3. Butter

If you are a baker at heart, you may be reluctant to lose one of the most common recipe ingredients: butter. Fear not! Vegan margarine products like those offered by Earth Balance are the perfect non-dairy substitute whether you’re using it for baking or spreading. Like vegan cheese, some brands of vegan margarine may contain milk byproducts, so be sure to read the label. And choose a brand without trans fats, as trans fats can increase your risk of heart disease. 


Related: How Impossible Meat Is Changing the Game for Health-Conscious Foodies

4. Yogurt 

Yogurt is lauded for being a portable snack packed with probiotics. Don’t worry, you don’t have to give up your morning snack. You can get your yogurt fix with alternatives made from coconut milk or flax seeds. Many yogurt alternatives like those offered by Good Karma are low in sugar, gluten-free, and contain the same probiotics and cultures you’d find in regular yogurt. 

5. Ice Cream 

We couldn’t leave without talking about what is sure to be one of your favorite desserts. If you’ve spent any time at your supermarket, you’ve likely noticed vegan brands like So Delicious taking over the frozen foods section. These dairy-free alternatives are offering cashew milk, oat milk, almond milk, coconut milk, and soy milk frozen deserts in the traditional flavors you know and love! 

To consult Jesal V. Popat, M.D., FACC, the best cardiologist in Tampa, please call (813) 344-0934 or fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment.


Disclaimer: The contents of this website are for general educational purposes only. All content and media on the Jesal V. Popat, M.D., FACC website does not constitute professional medical advice nor is the information intended to replace the services of Jesal V. Popat, M.D., FACC or other qualified medical professionals. If you believe you are having a medical emergency, call 911 immediately. 


The content, views, and opinions communicated on this website do not represent the views of Jesal V. Popat, M.D., FACC. Reliance on any information provided by this website is solely at your own risk. Although this website contains links to other medical websites, this is strictly for informational purposes. Jesal V. Popat, M.D., FACC is not responsible nor does the medical practice approve of the content featured on any third party linked websites referenced on this website.

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