Moo juice no ‘mo.

When I went home for Thanksgiving, I was caught off-guard by a major change in our house. No, my parents hadn’t converted my room to a guest room or given away our dogs, but when I opened the fridge to get a tortilla and some cheese to make a quesadilla, right at eye-level was a strange blue carton labeled “Silk.” I did a double-take.


Why was there soy milk? And, more importantly, where was that jug of Farm Crest skim milk I was so used to seeing? It was my sister’s fault, really. After years of chugging glass after glass of milk, she developed digestive problems and her doctor recommended going dairy-free. Then our mom decided that it would be better for all of us to make the switch. And since I was away at college and therefore “out of the loop,” no one realized that I didn’t know. I had friends who drank soy milk and raved about the chocolate and vanilla options, but I always thought that the idea of drinking “milk” made from plants was just plain wrong.

Besides, everyone said it was “different” and took some adjusting. Different? Adjusting? No, thanks, I’ll pass. “Just try it,” my mom said, rolling her eyes at my doubt. And so, it was with great trepidation that I took a sip from a glass filled with almost-beige liquid. And then another sip. And another. Huh. Could it be that it wasn’t half-bad? Granted, it tasted nothing like milk and the texture was all wrong, but nevertheless it was rather tasty, in its own plant-y way.

Ok, so we didn’t go totally dairy-free, we just stopped drinking cow-milk. And to be honest, I don’t miss it. Sure, it doesn’t taste exactly like milk, but then again, why should it? Soy milk gives you the same calcium, protein, and vitamin D that milk does, can be used in baking and cooking, is lactose-free, and, since it’s made from plants, is vegan. Many women notice that as they grow out of their teens, they can’t digest milk as well as they did when they were kids, but by switching to soy milk they can put down the calcium supplements and return to enjoying their cafe au lait.