Thursday, October 20, 2011

Healthy Homemaking Series: Dairy Choices

Baby Step 26 - Evaluate Dairy Choices (last one!)

I have to begin this post with a bit of a disclaimer.  The views expressed in this post are Stephanie Langford's and do not necessarily reflect my opinions.  I have only just begun looking into dairy products with regard to health and environmental impact, and my husband and I are currently discussing whether dairy will continue to be a part of our diet.  Now, on with the post.

Challenge: Consider what changes you could make for the better in regard to dairy.

Why: As with any animal products, the diet and health of the animal directly effects the quality of the food product.  Healthy cows make nutritious dairy products, while sickly/ill treated/drugged cows make unwholesome, even harmful, dairy products.

How: This is the criteria given for choosing dairy...
-grass-fed cows and organic dairy is best
-raw is preferred if you can get access to it, otherwise pasteurized but unhomogenized
-stick with full fat as saturated fats from healthy animals are actually good for you
-consume lots of cultured dairy - yogurt, kefir, sour cream, buttermilk, etc
-eat butter that is from grass fed cows and organic is ideal

To keep it affordable, Stephanie makes her own yogurt and kefir.  They eat butter which follows the above criteria.  She purchases large blocks of raw, natural cheese from a food co-op for a decent price.  Her family is also part of a cow share which they receive raw milk from.

Brad and I purchase D'Dutchmen Dairy milk.  It is located a few hours away from our city (but we can buy it at our local health food store), and they offer old-fashioned, handmade dairy products with a focus on top quality ingredients.  This is what currently fits into our budget as it is only 10 cents more per litre than regular milk at the grocery store.  We would love to find somewhere we could get raw milk (illegally, eek) or just organic for a better price.  Right now we also buy mainstream cheese, yogurt, cottage cheese, etc. because it is already pricey to begin with.  A goal we have is to learn to make these things at home in the near future.

Where do you get your dairy?


  1. Grace...when you have kids, you must not give them raw milk. Yogurt is easy to make, so that'd be cool if you made your own. :) Also, you can not give up dairy, b/c that would mean you would have to give up Blizzards!!!

  2. hahahahah i was just going to say does this mean no more blizzards?!

  3. We give our kids raw milk with no issues. Or at least we did, we don't get it anymore right now and I haven't found a new source. Hopefully I will. Otherwise we just buy regular milk, I wish we could get D'Dutchmen at all, much less for 10 cents more! You are so lucky. I have also been known to make my own cheese from raw milk/whey. Also you can totally make your own yoghurt from the milk you buy Grace. I have a slow cooker recipe for it. I think you might not have a slow cooker though. There are lots of regular recipes for it too. It's also super easy to make mozzarella.

  4. Giving up blizzards would be killer. Brad and I talked about that, haha.

    I would love to make my own yogurt, but when we did try it was a huge fail. It was one of these challenges. I asked what I did wrong, but didn't get any feedback. One person thought it might've been because the milk was pasteurized.

  5. I have many sources for raw milk. My son, who eats NOTHING, when he tasted the sample of raw milk, begged for some. He had a sports bottle half full every single day for a few weeks. Is it illegal in some states?? That's awful! It's $4 for 1/2 gallon. Quite pricey for me!

  6. Grace,
    I just saw an ad for Dairyland Organic Milk at Save on, but it is 7.99/gallon.