Which is the best milk to drink if you want to lose weight?

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New Delhi: With so many milk alternatives like soy milk, almond milk and coconut milk out there, it can be confusing to choose the right one for you, especially if you’re watching your fat intake. Fret not, we have got this covered here so as to enable you to get the best milk to drink when trying to lose weight and slim down your waistline. But what you need to keep in mind is that the calories and the cholesterol increase as the number of fat grams increase. Also, higher fat milk means the higher amount of saturated fats that raise the level of cholesterol level in the body. Read: Ketogenic diet – This is the secret to Kim Kardashian’s weight loss after giving birth

Here’s a quick comparison of different types of kinds of milk

Skim milk

Turns out, this good old dairy milk – of course, here we’re referring to fat-free (a.k.a skim) milk – is a great choice is you’re trying to lose those pounds. Packed with several vital nutrients including calcium, vitamin A, phosphorus, vitamin D, vitamin B12 and the antioxidant selenium, skim milk is beneficial for cardiovascular health and weight management. A study in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, people felt fuller and ate fewer calories after drinking skim milk than after drinking a fruit drink. Also, the proteins in skim milk have been shown to reduce hunger. Read: Five foods that stop sugar cravings, aid in weight loss

1 cup of fat-free milk contains 90 calories, 0g fat, 126mg sodium, 13g carbs, 0g fiber, 12.5g sugars, and 8g protein.

Soy milk

This one is good if you’re lactose intolerant, meaning you can’t properly digest lactose – a natural sugar in milk and milk products. Soy milk is made from ground soybeans mixed with water and is a great choice for people who are lactose intolerant or have dairy sensitivities. It has the same nutritional value as regular milk, although not quite as much protein. And vanilla varieties have a really great flavour. You may opt for unsweetened ones fortified with calcium and vitamin D.

It is estimated that 1 cup of light vanilla soymilk has 73 calories, 1.5g fat, 8g carbs, 6g protein, 1g fiber, 6g sugars, and 98mg sodium.

Read: Why is it important to have breakfast to lose weight?

Almond milk

If you’re a vegan, allergic to soy or lactose intolerant, almond milk is a great choice. It is super low in calories and full of heart-healthy flavonoids that can help lower cholesterol. It’s pretty mild and has a slightly nutty flavour. Although this milk is an excellent option for anyone who’s sensitive to both dairy and soy, it is low in protein and calcium. But you can get some varieties with added calcium and protein, so it’s worth the price.

1 cup of unsweetened vanilla almond milk contains about 35 calories, 2.5g fat, 178mg sodium, 2g carbs, 0.5g fiber, 1g protein, and <0.5g sugars.

So, now, you know what is the best, yet healthiest, milk to drink that can help you flatten your tummy as well as improve overall health. Whether or not you’re tracking your calories, there are many good reasons to choose low-fat or fat-free dairy products over full-fat offerings. As far as other drinks go, which should be avoided if you want to lose weight, staying away from fizzy drinks and alcohol can make a huge difference.

Katja Cho

There’s a dizzying array of milk choices in the dairy section at the supermarket. Here’s how to decide which milk to buy for yourself and your family.

Cow’s Milk

Yes, cow’s milk is healthy (but if you’re lactose intolerant you may want to choose one of the non-dairy alternatives below). “It’s a nutrient goldmine because it contains vitamins and minerals many Americans lack in their diet, like calcium, vitamin D and potassium,” says St. Louis-based registered dietitian Jennifer McDaniel.

Calcium and vitamin D are important because they work together to support a strong skeleton, especially as you age, while potassium helps maintain a healthy blood pressure. Plus, McDaniel points out that one cup of cow’s milk contains 8 grams of protein, something you want during breakfast. “We’re constantly pushing people who are trying to lose weight to get more protein in the morning,” she says. Not only does it up the fullness factor but also builds muscle, which is key to staying lean.

Though some say it’s unnatural for humans to drink milk from another species, McDaniel points out that our bodies have evolved to digest cow’s milk (unless you’re lactose intolerant!) “We consume a more diverse diet than any other species,” she says.

So if you’re drinking cow’s milk which should you choose?

Skim

Best for: When you’re trying to lose weight

At only 80 calories per cup, fat-free versions pack nearly the same amount of calcium, vitamin D and potassium as low and full-fat versions. The drawback? Some people say it’s unappealingly watery.

Reduced and Low-Fat

Best for: When you need more flavor

The 1 and 2% varieties offer about 100 and 120 calories, respectively, per cup. They also pack some saturated fat—3 grams in a cup of 2%—or about 15% of the daily recommended amount. If you prefer the taste over skim (and a big part of sticking to a healthy diet is loving what you eat) and don’t consume a ton of red meat or cheese, then go ahead and choose a higher-fat milk, says McDaniel.

Whole:

Best for: The occasional milk drinker

It contains 5 grams of saturated fat per cup (nearly a quarter of your daily limit), but “if you’re drinking one glass a day, I see no problem in it,” says McDaniel. Though new research shows saturated fat from whole foods doesn’t have an impact on cardiovascular disease and may even offer some protection, experts still suggest limiting it in your diet. So if you want whole milk, cut back on snack foods and sweets with saturated fat.

Organic

Best for: If you’re switching your baby from breast milk to cow’s milk, since it doesn’t contain any added hormones. (All milk contains some natural hormones.)

But studies show organic isn’t necessary for any health reason, says McDaniel, though some people think it tastes better. Another perk: Research shows it contains more heart-healthy omega 3 fatty acids compared to non-organic milk, which costs less. But if omega 3s are your concern, you’re better off eating a piece of salmon for dinner, she says.

Non-Dairy Milk

If you’re opting to ditch dairy because of digestive woes or ethical reasons, consider these:

Soy

Best for: When you want to replace the dairy in your diet

Soy is most nutritionally similar to cow’s milk. “It’s my plant milk of choice,” says Sharon Palmer, a registered dietitian nutritionist and author of Plant-Powered for Life. Per cup, it packs 110 calories and 8 grams of protein and fortified versions pack more calcium and vitamin D than cow’s milk. Plus, if you’re feeding the kiddos plant milk, Palmer recommends soy for its high amounts of nutrients children need to grow.

Almond Milk

Best for: A low-calorie option

No doubt almond milk is popular, and it may have to do with the health halo surrounding almonds. Plus, says McDaniel, in taste tests, many people say they prefer almond milk to regular cow’s milk. Almond milk is made by soaking almonds in water, blending and straining, a process that leaves little protein from the nut behind. That’s why drinking almond milk is not the same as eating a ton of nuts. Compared to an ounce of almonds (23 whole ones), which contains 6 grams of protein, a cup of almond milk only has one gram of protein, so you could be seriously missing out.

Using unsweetened almond milk in a smoothie or bowl of oatmeal is good if you’re watching your calories, since one cup may be as low as 30 calories. But focus on getting other sources of calcium and vitamin D (like sardines, fortified juices and leafy greens) to make up for what almond milk lacks.

Rice Milk

Best for: If you have food allergies

You’re less likely to have a reaction from rice milk than from soy or nut milks. Plus, the flavor is mild, which some people prefer, says Palmer. But like almond milk, it’s low in protein with only 1 gram per cup. It’s also higher in natural sugars and carbs than other milks, and flavored varieties add more sugar still. “Unless you’re allergic to the other choices, I wouldn’t recommend this plant milk as your go-to,” says Palmer.

Jessica Migala Jessica Migala is a health writer specializing in general wellness, fitness, nutrition, and skincare, with work published in Women’s Health, Glamour, Health, Men’s Health, and more.

Are You Drinking the Right Type of Milk?

But Metsovas says that’s changing, due to the current market of plant-based milks with a higher consideration of protein amounts. She also emphasizes the importance of a balanced diet: “Although plant-based proteins are considered ‘incomplete’ amino acid structures, compared to animal sources, you’re still in a good zone if you balance your protein sources throughout the day with eggs, chicken, fish and lean meats.”

Additionally, nut- and plant-based milks offer options to anyone who struggles with a lactose intolerance, or has a milk, whey, or casein allergy. For those such individuals, both Goodson and Dr. Fitzgerald recommend soy milk as a great substitute.

Here’s a quick round-up of the pros and cons related to most common milk options.

Cow’s Milk

Emily Braaten, a registered dietitian based in Washington, D.C., says cow’s milk carries “a concentrated amount of protein and calcium that makes it hard to imitate: 8 grams and almost 30 percent of your daily needs per cup, respectively.” Goodman calls cow’s milk a “nutrition powerhouse,” since it contains, “nine of the essential nutrients (calcium, vitamin D, vitamin A, phosphorus, vitamin B12, potassium, riboflavin, niacin, protein) your body needs every day to function and grow” at a generally low cost. For children and older adults, Dr. Fitzgerald suggests fat-free or low-fat (1 percent) milk instead of whole or 2 percent milk, due to lower saturated fat and calorie content.

“Among non-dairy milks, unsweetened soy milk is probably the most nutritious, because it is low in calories and saturated fat, and high in protein (in similar amounts to cow’s milk),” says Dr. Fitzgerald. “Fortified soy milk can also be a good source of nutrients such as vitamins A, D, B12 and calcium,” she adds. With 6 grams of protein per cup, Braaten prefers soy milk as a backup to dairy, with this little tip: “Don’t forget to shake the container, because the added calcium will settle at the bottom!”

Braaten says almond milk contains almost 50 percent of your daily calcium needs per cup, but with almost zero protein. Still, Dr. Fitzgerald indicates almond milk can be a good source of vitamins B12, A, D and E. It’s also low in calories, with no saturated fats.

“Similarly, rice milk has very little protein,” says Dr. Fitzgerald, “which is necessary for growth and maintenance of normal body functions.”

“Coconut milk is high in calories and saturated fat,” warns Dr. Fitzgerald. “It has more protein than almond and rice milk, but not as much as soy or cow’s milk. A light version of this milk is a better choice than regular coconut milk because of its lower saturated fat and calorie content,” she recommends.

Does milk intake really impact my health as a whole?

Associate Clinical Professor Emeritus of the Department of Pediatrics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine Dr. Keith Ayoob, says he understands why consumers are confused regarding milk nutrition. But many studies, like this one, indicate milk and dairy intake meets nutrient recommendations, and may protect against chronic, prevalent diseases, as well as support bone health.

“Not including dairy nutrition, such as milk and yogurt (especially Greek yogurt), is a real missed opportunity,” says Dr. Ayoob. “Bone health doesn’t get noticed until there’s something wrong, like a broken hip. By then, you’re looking at many decades of inadequate bone nutrition,” he adds.

Your best bet? Enjoy the milk that best suits you. But, as always, prioritize a well-rounded diet high in protein and calcium. Contact your health care provider or a nutritionist to figure out what type of milk is ideal for your health and lifestyle.

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If you are working towards losing weight and getting in shape, it is important to make sure that you’re burning more calories each day than you’re taking in. As we all know that milk is an essential part of the daily diet but with a huge variety of milk available in the market, a lot of people tend to get confused in deciding which milk is better for weight loss. Unsweetened and non-fat milk can do wonders here and then there are several other options too. Let’s take a look at the best milk to drink to lose weight.

Soy Milk:
Soy milk is made from ground soybeans and thus serves as a great choice for those who are vegan or are lactose intolerant. The monounsaturated fats found in soy milk decreases intestinal & blood fat and absorption of cholesterol. Also, phytosterol in soy performs fat blocking function. In addition to this, soy milk also contains fat-burning vitamins – riboflavin and vitamin B12 which helps produce more energy and increases metabolism to make you burn off fat more efficiently.

Almond Milk:
Due to the processing of almond milk, only a very small portion of almonds is present in the milk and thus it does not create high amounts of calories and fat as originally almonds have.

Almond milk is full of heart-healthy flavonoids that keep the cholesterol in control. In addition to this, it is rich in Vitamin E, low in sugar, a source of calcium, rich in vitamin D and low in potassium and phosphorus. Therefore, including Almond milk in weight loss diet is a great option for those who are allergic to soy, are vegan and wishes to get in shape without excluding milk from their diet.

Skimmed Milk:
Being free from fat or having less than 0.5 gram of fat makes skimmed milk the best milk to drink to lose weight especially for those who are not looking for lactose-free and vegan options. Verka Skimmed milk is easily digestible, rich taste and extremely low in fat. It is pasteurized and hygienically packed in advanced milk processing plants through milk pouch filling machines.

Cow Milk:
Cow milk contains low-fat content than buffalo milk and therefore is lighter and easy to digest. It is high in phosphorous & vitamin B12 and an excellent source of protein and calcium. Being rich in calcium and vitamin D, cow milk helps to body burn calories by increasing the metabolism of fat. Verka Cow milk meets the requisite FSSAI standards and comes in convenient packing of 500 ml and 1.5 litres.

So, after reading the above options now you know which milk is better for weight loss and will improve overall health. Also, in your attempt to lose weight, make sure you stay away from fizzy drinks, oily and fried food, and alcohol.

Oat Milk: The New Secret to Weight Loss

You’re probably familiar with popular non-dairy milk alternatives like soy, almond, cashew, and coconut milk, but recently, oat milk has become the darling of those who eschew dairy in their diets.

Seriously folks, if you’re on a plant-based diet and haven’t tried oat milk, you’ve been missing out. It’s low in fat and also lactose-free, which is perfect for anyone who is lactose intolerant or simply chooses to go light on the dairy when it comes to their eating habits.

Most importantly, this healthy milk alternative is utterly delicious, with a delectable creaminess that will satisfy anyone who misses the texture of full-fat milk.

How Oat Milk is Made

  • Oat milk is made by soaking steel cut oats in water, blending them until smooth, then pouring the blended oat mix through a cheesecloth to strain out the solids.
  • It’s so simple to make you can even make it at home.
  • The result is a delicately flavored, mildly sweet, thick non-dairy milk which you can enjoy in your morning cup of coffee, protein smoothies, your favorite creamy soups or pasta sauces, or a cup of hot cocoa when you’re feeling cozy.
  • You can treat oat milk the same way you’d treat any other milk – dairy or not.

How to make oat milk at home? As we mentioned, it’s super easy to do.

  1. Simply soak one cup of oats in water for about half an hour to an hour.
  2. Drain the oats then add three to four cups of water and blend.
  3. Take a cheesecloth and strain out the oats and voila!

You have a freshly made batch of oat milk for your every need.

Where to find oat milk? If you have a busy lifestyle and making oat milk isn’t a viable option for you, most supermarkets (from Whole Foods to Safeway and everything in between) now stock dairy milk alternatives, oat milk included. Naturally, your local health food market will carry a selection of oat milk as well. If you’re looking for recommendations, some of our favorite brands are Oatly, Rude Health Oat Milk, and Umpqua Oat Milk.

Benefits: Oat Milk & Weight Loss

Why is oat milk so good? Here are some of the benefits of drinking oat milk.

  • Each cup contains a whole host of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, B12, D, iron, and important macronutrients like fiber and protein.
  • Oat milk comfortably beats other non-dairy options like nut milk and coconut milk, although if you’re looking for an extra protein boost, soy milk does trump oat milk in that department.
  • Believe it or not, oat milk actually contains more bone-strengthening calcium than cow’s milk and virtually no fat in comparison: a mere 2.5 grams per cup versus 8 grams in cow’s milk and zero cholesterol.
  • Because it’s low in calories (130 per cup), fat, and sugar but high in protein and has fiber, oat milk is a great milk substitute if you’re trying to shed a few pounds.
  • It’s an ideal solution for anyone out there who is lactose intolerant, has nut allergies or is concerned about hormone use in dairy milk.

Getting The Most From Your Oat Milk

When it comes to dairy milk alternatives it’s important to take a look at the ingredients.

  • Some oat milk brands may contain more than just oats and water. Oils, gums, sweeteners, and flavorings may crop up in some of the options available in store, so if you’re wary of what you’re putting into your body, it’s worth checking out the back label before you buy.
  • Another important consideration for anyone who adheres to a gluten-free diet is that while oats don’t contain gluten, there is always the possibility of cross-contamination in a company’s facility, especially if other products based on wheat, barley, or other grains are processed in these facilities. Again, check the label for confirmation.
  • Pro-tip for our gluten-free friends out there: Oatly’s oat milk is made from 100 percent gluten-free oats and contains less than 100 ppm of gluten in its products.

Drinking oat milk in conjunction with proper exercise and diet can help with weight loss and ensuring you meet your nutritional needs. As a low-fat alternative with plenty of nutrients and satisfying flavor, oat milk should definitely be a top contender for shelf space in your refrigerator.

Photo credit: Loving It Vegan

Whether you’re lactose-intolerant, vegan or just looking to switch up your milk routine, milk alternatives can offer good nutrition profiles and different flavors to keep things interesting. The grocery store shelves can get a little overwhelming with all the different choices. So how do you choose the right milk replacement for you? Check out the nutrition facts about these six common milk alternatives.

Soy Milk

Soy milk has been the most popular non-dairy substitute for decades because its nutrition profile closely resembles that of cow’s milk. It’s the best high-protein milk alternative. Soy milk offers about 7 grams of protein per cup, compared to cow milk’s 8 grams per cup. Most, but not all, brands are fortified with calcium and vitamin D, so be sure to look at the nutrition label to find these nutrient values. Soy milk comes in flavored varieties, such as vanilla, and also comes in lighter and lower-calorie versions.

Almond Milk

Almond milk is a great dairy alternative when you are looking to cut calories. This nut milk is made from water and ground almonds. The bad news about almond milk is that it contains very little protein—just 1 gram per cup! Although most varieties of almond milk are fortified with vitamins and other nutrients, there are others that don’t contain vitamin D or calcium. Almond milk is creamier and thicker than other alternatives since its calories are coming from healthy, unsaturated fats.

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Rice Milk

Rice milk is a good option when you want something with a neutral flavor and a less creamy texture. When fortified, it usually does contain the same amount of calcium and vitamin D as cow’s milk. This milk substitute also lacks protein, containing only 1 gram per cup.

Coconut Milk

This is one of the newest non dairy milks out there. Coconut milk is a good choice when you want something creamy and sweet. Though this milk offers 30 percent of your daily value (DV) of vitamin D and 50 percent of your DV of vitamin B-12, it contains little calcium and just 1 gram of protein per cup. If you’re looking to reduce your saturated fat intake, keep in mind that coconut milk is the only milk alternative that contains as much saturated fat as whole cow’s milk.

Hemp Milk

Hemp milk is made from water and shelled hemp seeds. It contains a slew of healthy nutrients, including calcium, vitamin D and a moderate amount of protein (about 3 grams of protein per cup). As an added bonus, it contains omega-3 fatty acids. Unfortunately, hemp milk may be a difficult taste for some people to get used to.

Cashew Milk

This is another one of the newest dairy alternatives. Cashew milk is made from blending cashews with water, resulting in a creamy liquid. This milk is often fortified with calcium and vitamins A, D and B-12. Different brands will have varying amounts of nutrients, so be sure to look at the nutrition label. Although this milk alternative may be low in calories, it also contains very little protein, just 1 gram per cup.

Non-Dairy Milk Substitutes ➤ Top 5 Alternatives to Cow’s Milk

More and more people are deciding to give up dairy products. There are plenty of reasons to do it, ranging from milk allergies and lactose intolerance to ethical principles. But what does science say about drinking cow’s milk? What are the non-dairy alternatives?

We’ll answer the following questions in this article:

What is cow’s milk composed of?

Milk is an extremely complex food:

100 g of cow’s milk contains…

  • 87 g water
  • 3 g protein
  • 4 g fat (approx. 50% of which is made up of saturated fatty acids like palmitic acid, about 25% is unsaturated fatty acids like oleic acid, and the rest is polyunsaturated fatty acids like linoleic acid)
  • 5 g carbohydrate (primarily lactose)
  • Vitamins like A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6; biotin, folic acid, B12, C, D, E, and K.
  • Minerals like sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, sulfur, and chloride.
  • Trace elements like iron, copper, zinc, manganese, fluoride, and iodine.

Good to know:

The hormones contained in dairy milk have led to a lot of discussions about milk how and how much we consume. Two hormones found in milk are estrogen and progesterone, which our body produces as sex hormones. Others include bioactive hormones, such as insulin and prostaglandin.(1)

What causes dairy allergies and sensitivities?

There is a difference between an allergy to milk or dairy products and lactose intolerance. If someone is intolerant, the problems are caused by lactose. An allergy, on the other hand, is a reaction to certain proteins in the milk. Allergens in milk include casein, beta-lactoglobulin, and alpha-lactalbumin. The body reacts by fighting harmless proteins, which then creates allergic reactions.(2)

How much cow’s milk and dairy products can I consume per day?

According to the Harvard University’s “Healthy Eating Plate,” one to two servings of dairy products are recommended per day. An example would be: ¼ liter of low-fat milk or 250 g of low-fat yogurt/buttermilk and 2 to 3 slices of cheese (= 50 to 60 g) with 45% fat in dry matter (FDM).

What does the research say about drinking cow’s milk? What are the risks?

Drinking too much milk can be bad for our health:

  • Several studies have proven that the consumption of milk plays a role in the formation of acne.(3,4,5)
  • Drinking too much milk has also been shown to increase the risk of ovarian and prostate cancer.(6)
  • There is no scientific evidence that women who drink more milk have higher bone density.(7)

Plant-based milk substitutes: What ingredients should I avoid?

Many plant-based milk alternatives provide similar nutrients and can be just as nutritious as conventional cow’s milk when consumed in moderation. It is important to stay away from alternatives with hidden ingredients that can have a negative impact on your health. These include:

  • Sugar: Sugar is disguised by many names (e.g. sucrose, dextrose, glucose, fructose, fructose syrup, glucose syrup, maltodextrin, lactose, maltose, etc.) Sugar addiction is a real problem, which it why it is advisable to avoid added sugar as much as possible. You should completely stay away from artificial sweeteners.
  • Natural flavors: These include flavor constituents derived from plant or animal products. However, they no longer have anything in common with the food they come from, aside from the same chemical components.
  • Stabilizers like gellan gum: Gellan gum is a polysaccharide produced by the bacterium Sphingomonas elodea. It has the E-number 418 and is frequently combined with the thickening agent xanthan gum, which can have a laxative effect when consumed in large amounts.
  • Acid regulators: Acid regulators, such as phosphates, are added to milk alternatives to maintain the pH during storage. However, here is a lot of controversy surrounding the use of high concentrations of phosphates as a food additive, which is why they should only be consumed in small amounts.

Remember to always read the list of ingredients before you purchase milk alternatives.

What are the best plant-based alternatives to dairy milk?

1. Coconut milk

Coconut milk is a good dairy-free option available in your supermarket. It’s made by blending coconut meat and is a good source of nutrients, including magnesium, iron, and potassium. Coconut milk also contains lauric acid, a rare medium-chain fatty acid that is easily absorbed by the body and used for energy.

It should be noted that full-fat coconut milk is high in calories, and although it comes with many health benefits, you should stick to smaller portions.(8) When buying coconut milk, look for pure, organic coconut milk, which is commonly sold in a can.

Good to know:

Even though the coconut is not directly related to the walnut, people with a walnut allergy may experience allergic symptoms.

2. Almond milk

Almond milk – a mixture of finely ground almonds and water – is a particularly good alternative to cow’s milk for those with a dairy allergy. It is almost free of allergens and contains neither lactose, soy proteins, nor gluten. Almond milk has anti-inflammatory properties and may be easier to digest than dairy milk.(9) The downsides of almond milk are that it is often sweetened with added sugar and fortified with many additional nutrients. Your best bet is to buy plain, organic almond milk, or even better, make your own. You can find step-by-step instructions online.

3. Goat’s milk

While goat’s milk is technically considered dairy, it may still be a good option for those who avoid milk products. These can be difficult to digest, affect your skin, or make you feel bloated. Goat’s milk is not a vegan option, but it is known to cause less inflammation and digestive issues than cow’s milk.(10) Goat’s milk contains more short- and medium-chain fatty acids and is rich in unsaturated fatty acids.

Important:

Goat and sheep’s milk have almost the same amount of lactose as cow’s milk. People who are lactose intolerant should be careful with this milk alternative.

4. Oat milk

Oat milk is another good milk alternative, as it has neither lactose nor milk protein. Since the cereal grain is high in fiber, it also fills you up relatively quickly. Oat milk is often said to contain gluten, but is this true?

Check the facts:

The following cereals contain gluten: wheat, rye, spelt, barley, and einkorn wheat. Sometimes oats are also included on this list, because oats are often contaminated by grains that have gluten and thus contain another protein called avenin. This can induce symptoms similar to those caused by gluten intolerance. People with a gluten sensitivity need to be cautious with oat milk.

5. Soy Milk

Soy milk is a popular vegan milk alternative and is suitable for people with a lactose, milk protein, or gluten intolerance. This milk substitute is also a good source of protein and essential fatty acids. Nevertheless, soy milk faces plenty of criticism. It contains isoflavones, which have a chemical structure similar to that of the hormone estrogen, which our body produces. As a result, drinking soy milk can influence the effect of estrogen in our body – in both a positive and negative way. Don’t overdo it with this milk alternative, and never give soy products to infants or toddlers.

***

Best Milk Alternatives – 5 Non-Dairy Milk Substitutes

If you’re like me, you love dairy. There are few things as tasty as ice cream, cheese, yogurt, and even milk. But sometimes, dairy just doesn’t agree with me.

And I’m not alone. Tons of people are lactose intolerant, meaning they can’t eat dairy without having some major digestive upset. Others choose to avoid animal products entirely.

Plant-based milk alternatives make ditching dairy easy and there are dozens of types to choose from.

Here are a few of my favorite milk alternatives that can be substituted for cow’s milk in almost every recipe you can think of.

SOY MILK

Soy milk is by far the most well-known and popular non-dairy milks out there. It’s made from soybeans and often thickened to mimic the texture of dairy milk.

Unlike cow’s milk, it’s available in sweetened and unsweetened options as well as different flavors. Yep…that means chocolate.

And it tastes pretty darn good when used in cereal, coffee, tea, and even traditional cream-based soups.

Like cow’s milk, soy milk is naturally high in protein, packing a whopping 8 grams of plant-based protein in a single cup. It’s also fortified with the same vitamins and minerals as cow’s milk and may include an added bit of calcium to round out the nutrients and keep your bones and muscles strong.

But there are some possible health issues associated with soy milk. Soybeans are naturally high in estrogen. For some women, using soy milk on a regular basis can interrupt their hormone balance. Keep in mind that it takes a TON of soy to cause any problems. If you’re just using it in small amounts to get away from dairy, you should be fine.

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ALMOND MILK

The second most popular alternative milk is almond milk. Though it’s typically thinner than soy milk, it can taste better for people first making the transition from cow’s milk to plant-based alternatives.

Most almond milk brands fortify their beverages, adding the same nutrients you’d find in cow’s milk without the dairy. But almond milk is lower in calories, fat, and carbohydrates.

The milk tastes a lot like almonds, making it perfect for people who love the flavor of nuts on their own. Like soy milk, it can be added into almost any recipe that calls for dairy milk. That said, it’s not the best for hot beverages.

Some almond milks can taste bitter when they’re heated to a high temperature.

Almond milk is available both sweetened and unsweetened, but I recommend getting the unsweetened version. For added flavor especially in smoothies and on cereal, unsweetened vanilla is the perfect choice.

This beverage is made from blended almonds and water and is relatively easy to make on your own.

OAT MILK

If you’re allergic to nuts and soy, oat milk is a great alternative. It’s made from oats, water, and thickening agents like guar gum and carrageenan to create a texture similar to regular dairy milk.

Oat milk has a slightly sweet taste on its own, but the sugar content is similar to that of regular cow’s milk. Though it’s not the highest in protein, it is significantly lower in fat than other alternative milks.

Best of all, it’s mild flavor is perfect for using in coffee, tea, and even savory recipes. It adds a light amount of creaminess without dramatically increasing calorie count.

If you have celiac disease or gluten sensitivities, you may want to avoid using oat milk. Some oats contain gluten or are processed on shared equipment, increasing your risk of cross-contamination. If you do decide to use oat milk, check the label and only use brands that are certified gluten-free.

You can also make your own oat milk using certified gluten-free oats and fresh filtered water.

FLAX MILK

Flax milk is one of the newer alternative milks to hit the shelves and it’s by far the most similar to cow’s milk both in taste and texture. It’s naturally creamy, making it perfect for people just transitioning away from normal dairy.

The milk itself is low calorie with the average flax milk having about 50 calories per cup. Though the milk is naturally low in protein, many companies produce protein-fortified beverages with more than 10 grams of protein per serving. If you’re looking for the best milk alternative for weight loss, flax milk might be the best choice.

It’s naturally rich in Omega-3 fatty acids. Some studies suggest that incorporating Omega-3, 6, and 9 fatty acids into your diet can help you lose weight and keep it off. Omega-3s are thought to help you burn fat more effectively while the Omega-6 and 9 oils may help improve your cholesterol.

Since this milk is allergen-free, creamy, and delicious, there really aren’t any downsides except price. Most flax milks are found in the refrigerated section of the grocery store and cost about twice what a half-gallon of cow’s milk does.

COCONUT MILK

Coconut milk is the highest fat alternative milk, but it’s also one of the most versatile options…as long as you don’t mind the taste of coconut. Think of it as a plant-based alternative to whole milk.

This means it’ll give you that creamy taste you love without any of the discomfort associated with dairy milk. But you’ll want to use it sparingly.

Coconut milk is packed with calories and saturated fat which can ruin your diet and derail your attempts to lose weight when you’re using it on a regular basis.

Though it’s definitely not the best for weight loss, it’s one of the best if not THE best alternative milk for cooking. Use it instead of cream to make a delicious dairy-free curry or add it to your smoothies for an added flavor boost.

Alternative milks are a great way to break free from dairy and these options are a great place to start.

Love Rachael Xx

Written by Rachael Attard

Rachael is an Australian born certified personal trainer and nutritionist who holds a Bachelor degree in Science.
After struggling for years to find an exercise and diet program that is tailored to women striving for lean and toned body with no bulk she designed her Lean Legs Program. This program is tailored to each body type and focused on helping women get toned but feminine bodies, without getting bulky.
Her mission is to empower women and help them stay in shape in a healthy and balanced way.

Which milk is best for you?

When it comes to superfoods, it’s hard to look past dairy. Cow’s milk is an essential source of calcium, protein, iodine, vitamin A, vitamin D, riboflavin, vitamin B12 and zinc in the Australian diet. This is why the Australian Dietary Guidelines recommend consuming 2 ½ to 4 serves of dairy products or alternatives each day. In fact, consuming just one serve of dairy per day is associated with a reduced risk of colorectal cancer. Two serves per day is associated with a reduced risk of heart disease and stroke, and three serves is associated with a reduced risk of hypertension.

Skim, low fat or full cream milk?

These terms relate to the fat content of milk. Full cream milk contains 4% fat, while reduced-fat contains 1-2% fat, and skim milk contains less than 1%. The fat content is directly related to the Calorie content. Full cream milk contains 70Cal per 100mL, reduced-fat milk contains 53Cal per 100mL, and skim milk contains only 36Cal per 100mL. This difference in Calories can really add up over a day, so keep this in mind if you’re trying to lose weight. Cow’s milk is rich in saturated fat, which can contribute to elevated blood cholesterol levels. Reduced-fat and skim milk can be better options for some people who are wanting to manage their calorie intake.

Sugar

Looking at the nutrition panel, you may notice that reduced fat and skim milk contain more sugar than full cream milk. It’s important to note that sugar is not actually added to these kinds of milk. They contain more sugar per 100g because the fat content has decreased. So, the naturally-occurring sugar and protein content has increased proportionately. If you want to be sure that sugar is not added to your milk, check the ingredients list.

Allergies and intolerances

Dairy products are health-promoting and recommended as part of a healthy diet, but some people need to avoid cow’s milk for medical reasons. People with lactose intolerance should choose lactose-free cow’s milk, as it contains all of the same nutrients as regular cow’s milk without the lactose. Lactose-free milk is available in full cream, reduced-fat and skim formulations. For people with a cow’s milk protein allergy, calcium-fortified soy milk is the best alternative. It’s the closest match to cow’s milk in terms of nutrition. Other milk alternatives such as almond milk, oat milk and rice milk are lacking in protein and usually not fortified with calcium.

Vegan and plant-based diets

If you follow a vegan or plant-based diet, soy milk is the best alternative cow’s milk. While products such as almond milk and coconut milk have increased in popularity in recent years, they are naturally low in calcium and often not fortified. Protein is also an issue. Cow’s milk is required, by law, to contain at least 3% protein. There are currently no such regulations for plant-based milk alternatives. Soy milk is close to cow’s milk in terms of protein content. Other products are usually lower in protein, making them a poor substitute for cow’s milk.

Soy milk has fallen out of favour in recent years because of concerns around increasing oestrogen levels (due to soy milk’s isoflavone content) and the risk of thyroid conditions and breast cancer. However, numerous studies show that eating a diet rich in soy foods is actually health-promoting and protective against some cancers. The concerns around the safety of soy are related to isoflavone supplements, which are much more concentrated than soy milk and other soy-based foods. Studies show that if you are consuming soy milk, not soy or isoflavone supplements, there are no concerns.

Milk for strong, healthy bones

Does milk really help bones? Is a very important question many Australians wonder. Both calcium and vitamin D are critical dietary inclusions for maintaining strong, healthy bones, which are vital for leading a long and active life. In Australia, over 1 million people are living with osteoporosis. After the age of 20, it is more difficult for the body to build bone mass, so continued calcium and vitamin D intake is important throughout your lifetime. Milk is the perfect food to help you do this. Many people reduce their consumption of dairy products to cut calories when trying to lose weight. If you are following a reduced-calorie diet and not consuming dairy and alternatives frequently, it’s crucial to choose products fortified with calcium and vitamin D.

The bottom line

Cow’s milk is the best option for most people, as it is an important source of protein and calcium. Those trying to lose weight should switch to reduced-fat or skim milk. People who are lactose intolerant should choose lactose-free milk. Those with a cow’s milk protein allergy or follow a vegan or plant-based diet should choose soy milk, as it contains most of the nutrients of cow’s milk. Regardless of which milk you choose, calcium and vitamin D are crucial, so choose the calcium- and vitamin D-fortified options where possible.

Lite n’ Easy recommends the consumption of 1 cup of calcium-fortified skim milk each day in addition to the full 1200, 1500 and 1800 Calorie meal plans. to learn more about the nutrition behind our food.

I know your jar of overnight oats is delicious! With flavor combinations like chocolate coconut almond and maple vanilla pecan, these jars of goodness taste more like dessert than breakfast, which is great. But unfortunately, oats aren’t super high in protein — they only offer about seven grams — and you need this important macronutrient in order to feel full and satisfied until lunch.

Registered dietitian Stephanie Ferrari, MS, RDN, shared a tip to increase the protein in your breakfast, whether you’re adding milk to your oatmeal, bowl of cereal, or smoothies. Instead of using almond milk, she told POPSUGAR, “I suggest making oatmeal with milk for an added boost of protein.” Whether you use cow’s milk, soy milk, or pea protein milk (like Ripple brand), a one-cup serving increases the protein of your breakfast by six to eight grams.

It’s not a bad thing if you use almond milk! It’s just that a one-cup serving offers only one gram of protein. While this popular nondairy milk is low in calories — only 30 per serving, organic unsweetened soy milk contains seven grams of protein and 80 calories. Coconut milk, although also tasty, has the same issue as almond and contain zero grams of protein per serving.

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“A power breakfast of overnight oats is a great way to start your day and will help you stay satisfied until lunch so that you don’t overeat,” Stephanie said. “It’s a great food for weight loss for that reason.” Just remember to up the protein with your milk choice.

Regardless of the milk you use, here are other ways to increase the protein in your breakfast, whether you’re having oatmeal, cereal, or a smoothie:

  • Add seeds like chia, sunflower, pumpkin, or flax.
  • Add nuts like almonds, cashews, pecans, walnuts, or peanuts (or add whole nuts instead).
  • Add beans. Mash them with a fork to add to oatmeal or cereal, or just throw them in the blender when making your smoothie.
  • Mix in some protein powder.
  • Add in some peanut butter powder.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Jenny Sugar

What Is Rice Milk? How Is It Different From Other Forms Of Milk?

As compared to cow’s milk, it may be lighter, but has more carbohydrates than the latter. It doesn’t contain as much calcium or protein as cow’s milk. Therefore, most commercially sold rice milk brands fortify the milk with calcium and protein along with vitamin B12, vitamin D and iron. Calorie-wise, rice milk is lighter therefore; it may prove to be good for people looking to lose weight.

Can rice milk be made at home?
Yes! Rice milk can be prepared at home without the addition of any preservatives and sugar, which automatically makes it a healthier substitute. Of course,it may not have a longer shelf life, but will surely work wonders who believe in having mostly home-cooked food. It is easy and inexpensive to make; the only drawback is that it may not contain as many nutrients.

Rice milk can be prepared at home without the addition of any preservatives and sugar.

Here’s how you can make your own rice milk at home

While commercially rice milk is made by pressing the rice through a mill using diffusion to strain out the pressed rice, rice milk is made at home using rice flour or cooked rice. It is blended and then strained. All you need to do is to soak the rice grains for a few hours and then, cook the rice in large volumes of water. Once cooked, blend the rice until it becomes a smooth paste. Now, strain the blended mixture using muslin cloth allowing the smooth milk to drain through the bottom. Once you have got all the milk from the mixture, just refrigerate it for over 3 to 4 days or consume as and when you like it. If you wish to add any flavour, be it chocolate or strawberry or any other, just add them before blending.commercially rice milk is made by pressing the rice through a mill
CommentsYou can make smoothies with it, cheese sauces, baked goods and what not! Rice milk is got to be the new vegan rage.

Pros and Cons of Rice Milk

Rice milk is the third most popular nondairy alternative next to soy milk and almond milk. Drinking rice milk supplies you with many essential nutrients via the bran and germ of this whole grain, but there are also some setbacks compared to other milk alternatives. Below are some advantages and advantages of drinking rice milk.

1. Pro: Great Alternative

Rice milk is the most hypoallergenic of all milk products. People with lactose intolerance or casein allergy cannot have dairy, and those with soy or nuts allergies cannot drink soy or almond milk. Rice milk contains a generous supply of balanced nutrition for those who are not able to tolerate other milk alternatives.

2. Pro: No Saturated Fat or Cholesterol

Rice milk has the least amount of fat compared to all other alternatives. There is only 1 grams of fat per cup of rice milk and all of the fat is unsaturated. Rice milk is also cholesterol free, and therefore it works well for people with dietary restrictions on fat and cholesterol.

3. Con: Not Suitable for Diabetics

Since rice is highly starchy, so is rice milk. One cup of rice milk contains 33 grams of carbohydrates, 3 to 4 times the amount in milk or soy milk. If you have diabetes, rice milk may cause a sudden sugar overload. Therefore, you may be much better off drinking cow, soy or almond milk.

4. Con: Low Proteins

Cow’s milk and soy milk have comparable protein concentration–at about 7 to 8 grams per cup. Rice milk is much lower with only 2 grams in every serving. Because of this, drinking rice milk may not be as satisfying in taste compared to the other two, and will not work as well for appetite control.

5. Pro: Good Source of B Vitamins

Brown rice is naturally high in all B vitamins which are essential to your metabolism, circulation and nerve function. Some of these vitamins may be lost during rice milk processing, but most of these nutrients are made up if you buy the fortified products.

6. Pro: Promote Cardiovascular Health

There are plenty of heart healthy nutrients in the rice bran, and these nutrients are also contained in rice milk. The unsaturated fat comes from rice bran oil, which can lower your blood cholesterol. Niacin and vitamin B6 are also effective for this purpose. Rice milk is an excellent source of magnesium, which helps control your blood pressure. Iron and copper increases your red blood cell production, giving you better oxygenation and vitality.

7. Con: Low in Calcium

Don’t rely on homemade rice milk for calcium. There are only 20 milligrams of calcium per serving of natural rice milk, about 1% of your daily calcium need. Buy the fortified ones from the store if you are not taking additional calcium supplements. Ready-made rice milk is fortified to include 25% to 30% calcium in each serving.

8: Lots of Antioxidants

Rice milk contains more manganese and selenium than any other alternatives. These are powerful antioxidants that help protect you from all kinds of infections and cancers. Drinking rice milk can also give your immune system a boost.

Many people prefer dietary vegetable milk products instead of cow’s milk. And it’s right that they can all offer many advantages. They can help your digestion and give you a lot of vitamins and minerals and help you lose extra fat.

Credit: Giphy

Rice Milk

Since this vegetable milk it contains very few calories. This can speed up the metabolism, it is recommended to drink a glass of rice milk in the morning, it will help saturate your body with energy all day. The main benefit of rice milk is that it is rich in fiber, which lowers cholesterol in the body, while maintaining blood sugar levels.

The composition of sweet rice milk, which is on the shelves of stores often includes such components as fructose, honey, molasses. Sugar cane syrup, corn syrup, agave syrup. I think you should not talk about how much it is dietary.

Credit: Giphy

Rice milk also stops the accumulation of fat, thus helping you lose weight. If the real disadvantage of this product is that it does not contain as many proteins as cow’s milk, so when using rice milk, it is necessary to add foods with high protein content to ratsin.

Useful properties of this drink are not unlimited, there are data on the fact that in rice milk is a relatively high level of arsenic. For adults this is quite safe, but in children under 5 years old it can cause poisoning.

Credit: Giphy

How to cook rice milk

Ingredients:

1 cup of rice

300 ml of water

2 tablespoons of sunflower oil

4 tablespoons honey

300 ml of water is brought to a boil, and then a cup of rice is added. Cook the rice over medium heat for 20 minutes and allow it to cool. Place the cooled substance in a blender and mix well until a mixture is obtained. Then add honey and butter and mix the last time. Rice milk is ready to add vanilla or coriander to improve taste.

Sources: Fitday, Healthline, Simpleveganblog, Secretlyhealthy

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