Cut the Cheese

Oh, cheese.  Yummy cheese.
Loved by everyone.  Good for no one.  

Cheese is like that shady, noncommittal smooth talker that you know you shouldn't be dating.  It might be fun in the moment, but truth be told it's only holding you back in life and in the long run it might give you a horrible disease.

But we all know that.

Unlike yogurt, who has the hardest working PR agent in show business, cheese is not really touted as a health food.  Sure every once and a while some study will come out lauding feta as the new health this or goat cheese as the healthier that, but deep down I think we know the truth.

Cheese is just for fun.  (Fun for us.  Not so fun for the animals who sacrifice their lives for it.  But more on that in the Dairy Rant.  It's coming….)

If you give up cheese, everything about your health will get better.  Everything.  You will lose weight, dark circles under your eyes will disappear, as well as double chins and jowls.  You will have more energy, sleep better and feel less bloated.  Your digestion will improve and you will have a better sense of smell.  You're skin will begin to glow.

But the trick is you have to really give it up.  You have to go cold cheddar, my Veggies.   No cheats with this one.  It's gonna take your body a few weeks to work the sludge out of your system, so if you really want to see results you need to quit for a good chunk of time.  Three weeks usually does it.

Would you like a cheese substitute to help you break the habit?
Well, there isn't one.  Life's tough.

Ok, there are substitutes but I'm going to give it to you straight…most of them don't really taste like cheese.  Nothing tastes like cheese.  But...

Many of them are delicious in their own unique cheese-free way!  Try them with an open mind and don't compare them to cheese.  Just think of them as your new, friendly cheese-ish flavoring.  Here are two of my favorites:

Parma Vegan Parmesan is fantastic on salads and vegetables.  I also use it when I make vegan artichoke dip (recipe from Alicia Silverstone's The Kind Diet) and no one is the wiser. It is made almost entirely of walnuts, so you nut-allergy folk steer clear of this one.

I think Daiya Cheese the closest thing to actual cheese on the market today.  It has a great texture, melts (so it works for hot dishes) and tastes great.  It is made of peas and is casein, lactose, gluten and soy free.  My husband, who is not a fan of cheese substitutes, thinks it's the best thing since sliced...well...cheese. 

-♥ J :)
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