Cheese vs Veganism

When the conversation comes around to my change to veganism, one question which keeps cropping up is “I would love to go vegan, but I can’t give up my cheese”
Aside from smoking, drinking and gambling, eating cheese seems to be the number 1 addictive activity that many cannot break.   
Why is this?


Well the answer is to do with the addictive properties of morphine!

It turns out that cows milk (and indeed all mammal’s mother’s milk) contains a level of Caso Morphine to ensure that the infant comes back for more.   It needs to hit the pleasure centre of the developing brain. 

When we steal it to put in our tea, and also condense it down with Salt and other enzymes to make cheese, we are becoming addicted in the same way.

Cow’s milk is really for baby cows.


To keep the cow producing milk we do some pretty horrific things.  A cow can only produce milk if they are pregnant or have just given birth.  Therefore it makes economic sense to keep cows pregnant to produce as much milk as possible.   This is all done artificially, ‘obtaining’ sperm from the bull, injecting it into the cow’s uterus by ‘making her receptive’ .   This involves inserting a human arm….do I need to go on?

Then, when the cow gives birth she produces milk.   Clearly this milk is for the baby cow but that stuff is really for us.   Therefore the calf is removed from the mother before the maternal bond is formed. This can be very distressing for the cow and the calf.




The calves are kept in crates, and then slaughtered for Veal if male (the market for veal is quite poor so male calves are often considered waste products).   Female calves are submitted into the constant pregnancy artificial insemination, pregnant cycle that her mother is already in.

The Lifespan of a Dairy Cow

Cows typically manage to stay in this cycle for about 5 years.   Cows naturally can live up to 20-25 years but the stress of being kept constantly pregnant so to maintain the milk volumes takes it’s toll, many can no longer stand or walk to the parlour to be milked.   When they are ’spent’ they are unceremoniously dragged away to be slaughtered for low grade beef mince in our burgers.

This more than any other reason I know is why vegetarianism is not enough.

Cheese Vs Health

Cheese is typically 65% saturated fat.   This is the type of fat which, laden with cholesterol, that we don’t need. Our bodies can produce all the cholesterol that we need.


It also contains the growth hormones required to transform a 65kg calf into a 720Kg cow.   This growth hormone (a type of protein) is more and more being identified with the growth in certain types of cancer cells.   Populations which do not consume dairy have much lower cancer rates.

Calcium is often cited as a nutrient in dairy, but there’s ample calcium which can be obtained from other sources, like green leafy vegetables and legumes.

Cheese vs the environment

To keep us supplied with Cheese and Milk requires a massive amount of natural resources, livestock agriculture and the feed requirements of intensive dairy farms.   Current estimates by WWF put the number of dairy cows alive today at 270 Million.   The Idyllic picture portrayed by the dairy industry clearly misrepresents this, cows are not kept in fields of lush green grass, but in intensive feed lots where they are fed on Soya and other grain crops shipped in.   The environmental impact of the space required, the greenhouse gases produced by the waste and the effect of water sources of inadequate treatment of manure are devastating.   We can observe the Ocean Dead Zones around the tributaries of major water courses where no aquatic animals can survive.

Cheese vs ’The Taste’

The other day I was in a cafe and ordered a Vegan Salad platter.  I hadn’t noticed that this included a Vegan Cheese.   Not having eaten cheese for about 5 years (since before going vegan), I expected to be reminded about how much I enjoyed the taste of cheese.

Interestingly (and possibly because vegan cheese is usually nothing like the real thing), I had completely lost the taste for it, didn’t like it at all. This cheese was one of the good ones and had many of the properties I remember from the taste of cheese I like.

Mindset Shift

The Mindset Shift When we have a closed mindset around things such as the tastes we enjoy, our habits keep us trapped within that mindset.   In order to break the habit we need to make some connections with new, better habits and treat the old undesirable habits with a dose of knowledge.   Given time our tastes and habits can change.

Changing Mindsets in other areas.

Consider the following statements:

  • ‘I am always bad with my finances….’
  • ‘I could never run my own business….’
  • ’There’s no way that I can afford…..’
  • ‘I’m too old to…..’
  • ‘I’m not clever enough to be an entrepreneur….’

These are all closed mindset thinking.   They can be changed.   You just have to be open to the possibilities

Take Action on some of your closed mindset behaviours and habits today.   Learn how to break down the limiting mindsets and free yourself to the possibilities.

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