The Alley Cat Cafe is comitted to using only organic dairy products in our drinks. We use Organic Valley Milk as much as we can because we can get it from Chico State University, so it travels less and uses less fuel to get here. Their website is a great resource for all kinds of healthy information. Here is just one exerpt from www.organicvalley.coop :
We used to think all fat was “bad.” Not surprising, really. Fat carries a hefty calorie load and Americans are notorious waist watchers. Food manufacturers sold us low-fat, fat-free and “lite” versions of salad dressings, cookies, potato chips, and everything in between.
Weight-conscious consumers chose margarine over butter, vegetable shortening over lard, and even artificial whipped topping over real whipping cream.
We thought we were doing right by our families. But today we know better.
Despite its calories, fat helps us absorb fat-soluble vitamins, and delivers satisfying taste – an essential ingredient in pleasurable eating. We’ve also since learned that “hydrogenated” vegetable oils in stick margarine and shortening contain “trans” fat, which raises our blood levels of “bad” cholesterol and increases our risk for heart disease.
The Pasture Advantage
Historically, when humans were hunter-gatherers and our diets consisted mostly of wild plants, fish, and meat from grazing animals, we likely consumed an omega-6 to omega-3 ratio close to 1:1. (4) With industrialization, our diets shifted to include more vegetable oils, meat from animals raised on grains, and highly processed foods. As a result, the average American now consumes at least 10 times more omega-6 fatty acids than omega-3s (3), which may partly explain our current chronic diseases.
Good Reason to Get Omegas Back in Balance
The American Dietetic Association recommends increasing our intake of omega-3 fatty acids to reduce inflammation and lower our risk for cardiovascular disease and heart attack. (5,6) There’s also exciting research underway investigating the role of omega-3 fatty acids in protecting against colon cancer (7,8), depression, Alzheimer’s disease, and age-related macular degeneration – a leading cause of blindness in the U.S.
However, omega-3 fatty acids may be most important in brain, eye and nerve development, and especially critical for pregnant and lactating women and their infants .
Organic Foods: Your Win/Win
Organic foods not only minimize our exposure to environmental toxins, but because organic ruminant animals are required to spend significant time on pasture, organic meat and dairy products naturally contain a healthier mix of fatty acids.
One of the key issues organic advocates can bring to the diet debate is the importance of knowing the source of our food. Reducing our exposure to environmental toxins is key to our children’s health, and protecting our natural resources is key to the future of our planet.
Customers ask all the time, “what makes your drinks so good?” I tell them we use the best of the best products in our drinks. Organic milk from happy, healthy cows, sustainably grown coffee and Fair Trade chocolate grown by happy, well paid farmers. The health benefits aside, Organic products just taste better.