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Milk Do's and Don'ts

Updated: May 9, 2021

We have always been told how milk is important for our growth and health. "A glass of milk is a way to a healthy upbringing"- I have heard this statement for as long as I can remember. Growing up, I would have a glass of milk every morning before going to school. But, do you know what foods to combine it with and which foods are incompatible?

Classical Ayurveda texts tell us it nourishes all tissues, right down to the Ojas (the subtle essence of our body/mind often equated with immunity). Milk is nourishing, cooling, balancing to Vata and Pitta, and a great medium to take many herbs with.

* Drink milk warm, after bringing it to a simmer. Raw milk is harder to digest and has more lactose (which many people have issues with).

* Add a pinch of ginger, clove, cardamom, saffron, cinnamon, nutmeg etc. These spices give your Agni (digestive fire) the extra oomph it needs to digest efficiently.

* Let milk be a meal by itself or a between-meal snack

* A cup of warm spiced milk is a great breakfast for people who are not too hungry in the morning.

* When it is too late for dinner but you don't want to go to bed hungry have a cup of hot milk with nutmeg or a few strands of saffron for a restful nights sleep.


* Avoid milk with salt. Ayurveda says this is a very damaging food combination. This means cooking with milk, cheese, yogurt etc. should be avoided (see below for exceptions).

Don't add salt to your oatmeal if you have it with cream. Cream soups are out, and cream cheese bagels are asking for trouble.

* Avoid fish and milk as is compromises blood and brain tissues.

* Avoid milk with anything sour. This is why fruit and milk combinations are problematic for many.

Do not combine with sour fruits such as melons, cherries, yeasted bread, eggs.

Best to drink alone or with oatmeal, rice, dates or as a pudding.

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