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According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the average American consumes 36 pounds of cheese, 200 pounds of milk and cream and 24 pounds of ice cream or frozen dairy products annually. But what benefits do dairy products provide in the first place? The dairy industry touts bone health and calcium, but research suggesting dairy helps bone health is weak at best. If you are deficient in calcium, there are plenty of non-dairy calcium sources, including kale, collard greens, tempeh and beans.
On the other hand, there may be some health reasons to reduce or cut dairy out completely. What happens to your body when you go cold turkey on dairy?
1. Fewer Zits
Excluding dairy products could make you less prone to getting acne. According to research from Dartmouth Medical School, milk has testosterone-like hormones, which may stimulate oil glands in the skin and contribute to breakouts.
2. Better Digestion, Less Gas
Nearly two-thirds of the world’s population has a hard time digesting milk, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. This varies with ethnic groups from mild to severe lactose intolerance. If you have an intolerance to lactose, cutting out dairy could reduce bloating, flatulence, diarrhea and stomach cramps says the NHS.
3. Reduced Cancer Risk
Swedish researchers found women who drink more than one glass of milk per day may double their risk of ovarian cancer. A Harvard study found men who consumed more than two daily dairy servings had a 34 percent increased risk of developing prostate cancer, compared with those who consumed little or no dairy.
4. Longer Life
According to a study published in the BMJ, each daily glass of milk elevated mortality risk by 15 percent. Women who drank three or more glasses of milk per day were nearly twice as likely to die over the next two decades than those who drank less than one glass a day. The culprit: galactose, a simple milk sugar that induces oxidative stress and low-grade inflammation, often a precursor to disease.
In a YahooNews article, Julieanna Hever, MS, RD, CPT, a plant-based dietitian and author of The Vegiterranean Diet and The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Plant-Based Nutrition adds that abstaining from dairy could reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity and most other chronic diseases. That because most dairy products contain saturated fats, cholesterol-hormones and steroids.
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As a growing number of states move to pass laws that would criminalize pipeline protests and hit demonstrators with years in prison, an audio recording obtained by The Intercept showed a representative of a powerful oil and gas lobbying group bragging about the industry's success in crafting anti-protest legislation behind closed doors.
Speaking during a conference in Washington, DC in June, Derrick Morgan, senior vice president for federal and regulatory affairs at the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM), touted "model legislation" that states across the nation have passed in recent months.
AFPM represents a number of major fossil fuel giants, including Chevron, Koch Industries and ExxonMobil.
"We've seen a lot of success at the state level, particularly starting with Oklahoma in 2017," said Morgan, citing Dakota Access Pipeline protests as the motivation behind the aggressive lobbying effort. "We're up to nine states that have passed laws that are substantially close to the model policy that you have in your packet."
Big Oil is now using its political power to try and criminalize protests of oil & gas infrastructure.— Friends of the Earth (@foe_us) August 19, 2019
"This legislation has potential to punish public participation and mischaracterize advocacy protected by the First Amendment."https://t.co/bmiHjONEhy
The audio recording comes just months after Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed into law legislation that would punish anti-pipeline demonstrators with up to 10 years in prison, a move environmentalists condemned as a flagrant attack on free expression.
"Big Oil is hijacking our legislative system," Dallas Goldtooth of the Indigenous Environmental Network said after the Texas Senate passed the bill in May.
As The Intercept's Lee Fang reported Monday, the model legislation Morgan cited in his remarks "has been introduced in various forms in 22 states and passed in ... Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Missouri, Indiana, Iowa, South Dakota, and North Dakota."
"The AFPM lobbyist also boasted that the template legislation has enjoyed bipartisan support," according to Fang. "In Louisiana, Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards signed the version of the bill there, which is being challenged by the Center for Constitutional Rights. Even in Illinois, Morgan noted, 'We almost got that across the finish line in a very Democratic-dominated legislature.' The bill did not pass as it got pushed aside over time constraints at the end of the legislative session."
Many of the state bills restricting the right to protest have been "drafted by companies and passed through groups like ALEC, the secretive group of corporate lobbyists trying to rewrite state laws to benefit corporations over people." @greenpeaceusa https://t.co/ZxpTjWdrwT— Stand Up To ALEC (@StandUpToALEC) May 6, 2019
Reposted with permission from our media associate Common Dreams.