Dairy and the Dukan Diet
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Dairy, much like butter, is vastly different between countries as well as continents. For starters, it is less sweet in Europe than in the United States. Secondly, there are almost no dairy substitutes in Europe while in US there are many products made to manage lactose intolerance, carbs, sugars, and everything in between.

Dairy Rules on the Dukan Diet

Before we go into more details there are two main things to consider when eating dairy while on the Dukan diet.

Fat Contents

As the diet focuses very much on lowering the fat intake it is no surprise that the allowed dairy products should be 0% fat. However as I mentioned earlier not all countries actually have completely fat free products available. With this in mind dairy up to 2% fat is acceptable.

Sugar Contents

Managing sugar intake is just as important as cutting down the fat. Most food is easy - just check the label for sugar contents - job done. Unfortunately dairy gets a bit tricky here. Because it contains lactose there is no such thing as sugar free dairy.

To make sure a dairy product is ok to eat on the diet you need to check the sugar contents (keep it as low as possible) and then make sure that there is no added sugar - like from flavouring for example.

Lastly make sure the flavouring and sweeteners used are not fructose based. Aspartame is one of the allowed sweeteners, while fruit juices are not an allowed flavouring.

Acceptable Products

Obviously depending on your location different brands will be available to you, and I cannot list them all here. However here is a list of generic product types you can enjoy on the diet.

  • Fat free cottage cheese
  • Fat free ricotta cheese
  • Fat free cream cheese
  • Fat free sour cream
  • Fat free / skimmed milk
  • Fat free soy milk
  • Fat free fromage frais
  • Fat free Greek yoghurt
  • Fat free yoghurt
  • Fat free quark
  • Fat free powdered milk (low sugar)

What to Avoid

  • Buttermilk
  • Butter
  • Half & Half
  • Creams
  • All French cheeses
  • Regular sliced cheeses (mozzarella, provolone, American, Swiss, etc.)


This is one of the confusing products, as there are so many tastes and varieties available creating a whole range of products under a single name. So when in doubt, here's a quick reminder of what is allowed

  1. Plain fat free, sugar free yoghurt
  2. Flavoured fat free, sugar and fructose free yoghurt

When the Dukan Diet was created in Europe, it was based on European yogurts, which have significantly less sugar than American brands. The discrepancy comes primarily from food culture - people like things sweeter in the U.S. This is while the rules have been slightly modified when the diet entered the States to reflect this major difference.

Dairy Health and Weight Loss Benefits

Now that the rules are clear you might be wondering why bother with dairy in the first place if it makes things so complicated? For starters it is a rich source of protein and calcium - both of these are great for dieters, and complement each other well. As people on high protein diets can see their calcium levels drop that's one good reason for dairy intake.

Researchers in Spain who studied more than 5,000 adults found that those who reported consuming the most low-fat dairy (mostly skim and reduced-fat milk) were 54% less likely to develop high blood pressure over a two-year period than those with the lowest intakes of low-fat dairy.

Dairy is also said to help with weight loss by increasing the amount of fat excreted from your system. The benefits of calcium for weight loss have been known for a while, however recent studies show that specifically calcium from dairy can greatly improve your dieting efforts.


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