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Got Non-Dairy Milk?

Doctor Oz 's favorite is hemp. Jillian Michaels of The Biggest Loser's favorite is coconut. Not all milk comes from cows and many will celebrate alternative sources of dairy during the month of June.

Ashley Gonzalez, media specialist for the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals , encourages people to try other types of milk, not only for the animal's sake but also for a human's health.

"It's important to point out that cow's milk was meant for cows," said Gonzalez. "It's meant to fatten up these baby calves. This milk isn't made for baby humans. It's full of saturated fat, cholesterol. These things that are great for a baby cow but are pretty dangerous for a growing baby human. It's definitely not good for us to consume."

Non-dairy alternatives include milks made from soy, almond, rice, hemp, oat, coconut and hazelnut.

Some benefits of drinking a dairy alternative are warding off obesity and decreasing the risk of heart disease, as well as juvenile diabetes, constipation, allergic reactions and certain types of cancer, Gonzalez said.

"Drinking cow's milk is unnatural anyway," said Gonzalez. "We're drinking the secretion from a living being. It's kind of gross when you think about it. However, we can be drinking milk derived from soybean or rice."

However, some town residents are not eager to try the non-dairy variety.

"I'm just not interested," said Marques Younger of Elmsford. "Other than being vegan or lactose intolerant, I don't see the point of it. I don't see what is so healthy about it. I've been plenty healthy with the regular stuff."

Contrary to popular belief, said Gonzalez, dairy products are not good for women afflicted with osteoporosis. Because there is so much animal protein in dairy milk, it tends to leach calcium from the bones. PETA recommends women try soy milk, which is fortified with calcium.

Send us your favorite recipe made with non-dairy milk to: nbaage@mainstreetconnect.com .

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