Olympic weightlifter Kendrick Farris doesn’t eat dairy — and he doesn’t think other athletes should, either. He is one of many professional athletes who have realized the truth about dairy, which has long been a staple food in the sporting world due to industry marketing that has largely convinced the public that milk is healthy.
Farris, a vegan since 2014, is no stranger to busting the myth that you need meat or milk to be strong. He was the sole male weightlifter to compete in the 2016 Rio Olympics, where he beat his personal record of 377kg in the snatch and the clean and jerk. Today, he, along with vegan athletes such as seven-time USA Cycling National Champion Dotsie Bausch, former endurance athlete Brendan Brazier, and Olympic skier Seba Johnson, have joined Switch4Good, a campaign that aims to educate athletes about the health myths surrounding dairy and how to replace it their daily lives.
The 32-year-old athlete told LIVEKINDLY in an email that his physical and mental wellbeing improved significantly upon cutting animal products out of his diet, but he was upset with himself that he, like many others, had bought into the “Got Milk?” marketing that says cow’s milk helps build strong bones. “It took me a while to really cope with the fact that I had been deceived. My performance was getting better simply because I wasn’t doing harm to my body, so recovery was happening faster,” he said.
“I actually noticed at a young age maybe around 12-13 when I went to the doctor for a physical and they did x-rays and the results came back cloudy and the doctor asked if I was allergic to milk. I quickly answered no but I did recognize that I had lactose intolerant symptoms,” Farris said.“I thought it was normal and it wasn’t until YEARS later after doing research that I was doing damage to my body.”
Lactose intolerance is far more common than what we may think; according to the National Health Institute, 65 percent of adults worldwide live with it. Broken down further, a 2010 report called “A Worldwide Correlation of Lactase Persistence Phenotype and Genotypes,” shows that 21 percent of white people are lactose intolerant versus up to 90 percent of East Asians, 75 percent of African Americans, and 51 percent of Latinos. Symptoms of lactose intolerance include bloating, indigestion, nausea, diarrhea, and other symptoms that may hinder an athlete’s performance. In Farris’s case, he noticed a significant improvement to his recovery time.
When it comes to ditching dairy, Farris has framed his perspective to not think of it as giving up a product, but discovering new options.“Naturally we all think ‘quitting’ something is difficult but in this case, it was simply switching. I didn’t view it like that at first so the hardest part for me was giving up cheese because I wasn’t aware of the plant-based options but once my wife and I found alternatives those thoughts quickly left.”
Despite being an Olympic weightlifter, Farris says that he still regularly gets questions about protein due to the lack of understanding that even athletes can meet their protein needs on a plant-based diet. It’s a fair assessment – the western diet is centered around meat and dairy and some might not know which vegan foods they can turn to as replacements. Through Switch4Good, Farris and other athletes aim to make replacing dairy products easy with a comprehensive list of vegan milk, ice cream, yogurt, coffee creamers, butter, and cheese products.
“Many athletes are quietly making a move to dairy-free alternatives regardless of propaganda to keep everyone on the hamster wheel,” Farris added, referring to campaigns like “Got Milk?”
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ITMC ask for only the least amount of information necessary, gathering only what we believe is essential for doing business, or for the specific transaction at hand. We let customers know the information we have on them and allow them to opt out of specific engagements.
The goal of this policy is to make explicit the information we gather on our customers and users, how we will use it, and how we will not. This policy is unfortunately longer than we would like, but we must unambiguously address all the relevant cases. We will try and keep the language simple and direct as much as possible.
Part I – Information ITMC.com collects and controls
This part deals with how ITMC collects and uses information about website visitors, potential customers, users of ITMC's products and services, and others who contact ITMC through forms or email addresses published on or linked to our websites.
Part II – General
We collect information about you only if we need the information for some legitimate purpose. ITMC will have information about you only if (a) you have provided the information yourself or (b) ITMC has automatically collected the information. Below we describe the various scenarios that fall under each of those three categories and the information collected in each one.
Information that you provide us
Information that we collect automatically
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|Vimeo||To enable functionality with video features.|
|Facebook Connect||To enable functionality with social media features.|
|To enable functionality with social media features.|
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In addition to the purposes mentioned above, we may use your information for the following purposes:
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If you are in the European Economic Area (EEA), you have the following rights with respect to information that ITMC holds about you. ITMC undertakes to provide you the same rights no matter where you choose to live.
Right to access: You have the right to access (and obtain a copy of, if required) the categories of personal information that we hold about you, including the information's source, purpose and period of processing, and the persons to whom the information is shared
Right to rectification: You have the right to update the information we hold about you or to rectify any inaccuracies. Based on the purpose for which we use your information, you can instruct us to add supplemental information about you in our database.
Right to erasure: You have the right to request that we delete your personal information in certain circumstances, such as when it is no longer necessary for the purpose for which it was originally collected.
Right to restriction of processing: You may also have the right to request to restrict the use of your information in certain circumstances, such as when you have objected to our use of your data but we need to verify whether we have overriding legitimate grounds to use it.
Right to data portability: You have the right to transfer your information to a third party in a structured, commonly used and machine-readable format, in circumstances where the information is processed with your consent or by automated means.
Right to object: You have the right to object to the use of your information in certain circumstances, such as the use of your personal information for direct marketing.
Right to complain: You have the right to complain to the appropriate supervisory authority if you have any grievance against the way we collect, use or share your information. This right may not be available to you if there is no supervisory authority dealing with data protection in your country.
Our products and services are not directed to individuals under 13. ITMC does not knowingly collect personal information from children who are under 13 years of age. If we become aware that a child under 13 has provided us with personal information, we will take steps to delete such information. If you believe that a child under 13 years has provided personal information to us, please write to firstname.lastname@example.org with the details, and we will take the necessary steps to delete the information we hold about that child.
At ITMC, we take data security very seriously. We have taken steps to implement appropriate administrative, technical & physical safeguards to prevent unauthorized access, use, modification, disclosure or destruction of the information you entrust to us. If you have any concerns regarding the security of your data, we encourage you to write to us at reply@ITMC.com with any questions.
By accessing or using our products and services or otherwise providing personal information or service data to us, you consent to the processing, transfer, and storage of your personal information or Service Data within the United States of America, the European Economic Area (EEA) and other countries where ITMC operates. Such transfer is subject to a group company agreement that is based on EU Commission's Model Contractual Clauses.
We offer publicly accessible blogs and forums on our websites. Please be aware that any information you provide on these blogs and forums may be used to contact you with unsolicited messages. We urge you to be cautious in disclosing personal information in our blogs and forums. ITMC is not responsible for the personal information you elect to disclose publicly. Your posts and certain profile information may remain even after you terminate your account with ITMC. To request the removal of your information from our blogs and forums, you can contact us at email@example.com
Our websites include social media widgets such as Twitter "tweet" buttons that let you share articles and other information. These widgets may collect information such as your IP address and the pages you navigate in the website, and may set a cookie to enable the widgets to function properly. Your interactions with these widgets are governed by the privacy policies of the companies providing them.
We may be required by law to preserve or disclose your personal information and service data to comply with any applicable law, regulation, legal process or governmental request, including to meet national security requirements.
We may disclose personal information and service data to a third party if we believe that such disclosure is necessary for preventing fraud, investigating any suspected illegal activity, enforcing our agreements or policies, or protecting the safety of our users.
You may also contact us at: