July 2021 | Issue XIV
Living with Lactose 101
The Digestion Diaries
Good evening Dairy Dreamers 🙇🏽♂️
Welcome back to the fourteenth instalment of Living with Lactose!
Here’s to another week full of advice, tips, and hints on aiding your digestion and helping our tastebuds explore - letting us all seize the day 🐮
In our fourteenth weekly digestion diary, we’ve got a serious science edition!
➕ How food scientists have been finding creative ways to enjoy the fulfilling taste of cow’s milk, without the cow 🐄
➕ Why milk matters alongside the latest advice from the British Nutrition Foundation 🍴
➕ Our Restaurant of the Week: Wingstop 🐔 & our Indulgence of the Week: Dips 🧄
There's a million ways to enjoy one of the world’s most basic, yet important pleasures, pain-free. We're here to guide you and keep you informed every step of the way 🕺🏽
Ever since we started as a company, we’ve had lactose intolerant dairy lovers complain to us about the pain they felt with milk, and the subsequent years lost trying to find a suitable replacement.
Sure, there are many dairy-free options for milk, with almond, oat, and coconut, just to name a few. Yet, the issue we keep hearing time and time again is that nothing can ever replace the taste and versatility of the real thing. Of course, we agree.
On top of this, we’ve had readers who have reluctantly moved to these alternatives, conscious about the food and drink they enjoy, and how it affects the wider environment and global warming.
Now, it seems we may not be too far away from the perfect solution.
In 2014, bioengineer Ryan Pandya had recently converted to veganism and found he was struggling with a bagel. The issue wasn’t the bagel itself, but rather the “cream cheese” substitute that it was filled with, “bland and runny” were the words he used to describe his experience.
Well, that fateful afternoon may well have changed the future of dairy as we know it. Presently, Ryan’s company, Perfect Day, is at the forefront of dairy science, the firm makes and sells milk, but has no cows.
Instead, Perfect Day use a bioreactor to cultivate microorganisms genetically engineered to secrete milk proteins. The proteins don’t merely resemble milk – they are milk. Genetically, and tastefully, identical to the real thing.
Using precision fermentation, Ryan has been able to appeal to all lovers of animal products, even those that may be vegan, as he has created genuine, tasty, fulfilling milk, that no longer requires a cow.
According to Josh Milburn at the University of Sheffield, the beauty with milk, versus products from more well-known companies like Beyond Meat, who genetically manufacture burgers and meat products, is its simplicity. Whilst labs strain over stem cells extracted from an animal to make a burger that’s mildly close to the real thing, milk is just a mixture of biomolecules suspended in water, making it a lot simpler to recreate.
The ice cream made from this new technological breakthrough has really turned heads, with tasters mentioning how it really “tasted like dairy ice cream in a way plant-based ice cream hasn’t yet.”
Indeed, the taste of lactose, the sugar in milk, just can’t be replaced by plant-based alternatives. This is why a biologically identical milk, without the cows, can be such a game-changer.
Whilst this technology is still some time away from hitting our shelves, it points to a bright future ahead for dairy, even from those who may have adopted a vegan diet, as zero animals are used, and the environmental impact is minimal.
Healthy Eating: Don’t Ditch the Dairy 🐄
This month, new research from the British Nutrition Foundation (BNF) has shone a spotlight on the importance of dairy in our diets. Interestingly, their research has shown we’re also mindful of this, as consumer demand for more sustainable diets has been limited due to a lack of key nutrients such as iron and iodine in vegan and vegetarian diets.
When making decisions about appropriate substitutes for animal-sourced foods, as humans, we’re too often focused on total protein and the lack of it from many plant-based substitutes, but research from the BNF has warned that this is not enough.
In fact, whilst dairy is a perfect source, most people already eat more than enough protein. Yet, this isn’t enough of a justification to start chopping and changing your diet, instead, we must consider the overall nutrient profile of foods.
Many plant-based alternatives do not contain important vitamins and minerals found in equivalent products, such as the calcium and iodine in milk. As iodine is an essential mineral, your body needs it to function properly but cannot make it on its own, instead, you need to consume it.
According to Professor Judy Buttriss, Director General of the British Nutrition Foundation, animal-sourced products currently provide over a quarter of iron, a third of vitamin A, and about half the calcium, zinc, iodine, and riboflavin in UK adult diets.
As such, the importance of dairy cannot be understated, as, although there may be substitutes for enjoying cups of tea and bowls of cereal, it’s not as easy to replace the vast array of nutritional benefits that dairy products bring.
Luckily, if, like us, you love dairy, yet hate the pain it brings, we have the perfect solution. Allowing your body to absorb all the dairy goodness, easily and efficiently, without any of the pain that comes with it.
Restaurant of the Week: Wingstop 🐔
Since 1994, these masters of chicken wings have embarked on a journey that has resulted in more than 1,400 restaurants worldwide. By 2002, the brand had served one billion wings. By 2015, it was the third-fastest-growing restaurant chain in the US. Currently, it has 7 locations within the UK.
Alongside their delightful wing-offerings, the icing on the cake is their selection of delicious dips they have to go alongside them. We all know so many things that aren’t half as good without a dip, and Wingstop is no exception, providing regular ranch, blue cheese, and honey mustard.
Indulgence of the Week: Dips 🧄
We tend to throw the phrase “under-rated” at a lot of different things through our adult life, but an often overlooked, yet integral part of many meals, is the power of a good dip.
Unfortunately, as we’ve come to expect with things that taste so good, many of the world’s best dips, from nacho cheese, to tzatziki, to radiant ranch, contain an awful lot of lactose.
Yet the taste is so unmatched, their popularity doesn’t dwindle. For example, ranch dressing, made from buttermilk, garlic, salt, and herbs, has been the best-selling salad dressing in the United States since 1992. Add its use as a dip and as a flavouring for crisps, and you’ll realise why, in 2017, 40% of Americans named ranch as their favourite dressing.
Until Next Time!
Dairy is such an unavoidable and enjoyable fact of life, we started a business just so we could focus on it 😎 supplying high quality lactase tablets that ensure you’re prepared for any indulgence, and any occasion, that life might throw at you! 🥳✨
See you next week Dairy Dreamers 🤩
Graham Lawton, 'Real milk, no cows needed: Lab-made dairy products are now a reality’ (New Scientist, 11 August 2021) <https://www.newscientist.com/article/mg25133470-900-real-milk-no-cows-needed-lab-made-dairy-products-are-now-a-reality/> accessed 18 August 2021
Olivia Rudgard, 'Don't cut down on dairy for the environment, warn nutrition experts' (The Telegraph, 16 August 2021) <https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/08/16/dont-cut-dairy-environment-warn-nutrition-experts/> accessed 18 August 2021