Plant-based Milk Alternatives

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Plant-based milk alternatives are taking the world by storm. But before you storm into the closest store to get your daily dose of nutrients, let us help you find the healthiest plant-based milk option for you.

This amazing transition from regular milk to plant-based milk options is happening for a very good reason. Plant milk has been around for a while now, but we decided to re-discover these natural fountains of youth and health in recent years. 

People are finally discovering the benefits of plant-based milk substitutes little by little. Glass by glass, you begin to notice that your stomach is not bloated anymore. That your skin is glowing and your hair is stronger.  Your cholesterol levels are down, and your energy levels are sky-high. It’s not a magic potion but true plant power.

Are you ready to have a glass full of healthy nutrients?  

Dairy products as a foundation of our eating habits

Let’s face it, you simply cannot imagine your morning without a glass of milk or going to bed without a cup of warm milk. You start your days off by adding milk to your coffee and also enjoy a delicious smoothie for lunch with milk to eat healthy snacks to regain your energy. 

Dairy products make a large portion of our eating habits. Yet, behind these idyllic images, there are a lot of problems lurking. Although milk is very rich in vitamins, calcium, and protein, if you notice that you are having some issues with your digestive tract, maybe regular milk and dairy products are not the best choices for you. 

You should consider plant-based options in the following situations:

● You are lactose intolerant. Symptoms of lactose intolerance include flatulence, diarrhea, stomach cramps, and stomach bloating. Symptoms can vary, but you will quickly notice that something is wrong. And don’t worry, you are not alone. A lot of people may experience a sensitivity to casein – a protein found in cheese. 
● Ethics – of course, you probably thought about how some cows are treated and how cruel some people are to them, so you simply decided not to be a consumer of the industry.
● Milk allergies – these are also very common, especially among kids. They mostly outgrow this allergy by the age of 16, but the symptoms are unpleasant. They can vary from rashes to vomiting and nausea.
● You are trying to lose weight – some dairy products indeed work their magic to help you shed a few pounds, but milk itself is full of sugar, so it is better to skip the milk during restrictive diets.
● You are aware of potential health concerns connected with milk: if you are not buying milk that isn’t organic, you are buying potentially contaminated products. Contaminants could be various – pesticides, antibiotics, etc. 
● You are a devoted vegan – if you decided to give up on dairy products. 

Which plant-based kinds of milk are out there?

We will mention the all-time favorites. You can make your own milk at home or opt for commercial plant-based milk based on your needs. Store-bought plant milk is often enriched in vitamins and various nutrients, so it is up to you whether you decide to experiment in the kitchen with flavor and texture or you will simply buy it. 

Our all-time favorite plant-based milk substitutes include:

● Hemp milk
● Oat milk
● Almond milk
● Coconut milk
● Cashew milk

They all have different benefits and nutritional tables, so we will discover which option is good for each of your fitness and health goals.

Hemp milk

Hemp milk and hemp products overall gained massive popularity in the past few years. Milk Alternative, hemp milk is derived from ground and soaked hemp seeds. And hemp milk does not contain any psychoactive substances from the Cannabis sativa plant, so it is safe for consumption. 

Hemp milk is rich in omega 3 and omega 6 unsaturated fats, and it is naturally carb-free. Yet, if you are buying commercial hemp milk, make sure to watch for carbs and sugars. If you are on a diet that excludes carbs – natural homemade hemp milk could be an excellent base for soups, smoothies and be a great snack to enjoy after training. It will lower your cholesterol, and it is low in calories.

Oat milk

When we talk about a plant-based solution that will lower your cholesterol, we can’t skip oat milk. Oat milk has been around since 1990 but gained in popularity over the past few years. Oat milk is rich in carbs and protein. The texture and flair resemble cow’s milk. The only thing that will reveal that it is the glass of oat milk instead of cows is that distinctive oaty aftertaste.

Oat milk is rich in fiber, beta-glucans, calcium, and vitamin d. Oat milk can help you strengthen your bones because it is extremely rich in calcium. Since it is very rich in natural carbohydrates, it is not suitable for low-carb diets. Oat milk could be great if you wanted to add more fiber to your day. It can be used as a base for various smoothies, or you can add oat creamer instead of dairy creamers. Also, oats do not naturally contain gluten, so it is an excellent choice for people with Celiac disease. Remember to think about gluten contamination and find organic products that are certified gluten-free.

Almond milk

Almond milk is also among the favorite milk substitutes. It is entirely different from regular cow’s milk, except it looks like cow’s milk. Taste and texture are different, and it is naturally sweet in flavor. It is not a superior choice for people with tree nut allergies, but it is great for people on low-carb diets. 

Almond milk is low in calories but is rich in vitamin E, A, and D. You can easily get your healthy homemade milk if you soak the almonds and then filter the pulp. Almond milk will amaze you with the flavor because it is naturally sweet but don’t expect it to taste like dairy. It is almond, not alMOOnd. 

Coconut milk

Something straight from the tropical lands. Coconut is consistently among the most loving flavors everywhere. So if you enjoy sweet treats, you will love the distinctive coconut flavor lurking in a glass of creamy goodness. Like almond milk, it is not an excellent choice for people with tree nut allergies, but it is creamy and rich in fatty acids. 

Coconut milk is great for your heart, and it will be a great addition to your culinary recipes. Use it instead of heavy cream. Many orient cuisines have coconut milk and coconut cream as the foundation. You will soon discover why.

Cashew milk

Cashews are very common in vegan cuisine. When soaked in water, they have a creamy texture like dairy products. They are primarily a base of various vegan recipes for desserts, such as cheesecakes. So cashew milk is also a great addition when it comes to milk substitutes.

Cashew milk can boost your immune system and improve heart health. It is also rich in protein and minerals. Cashew milk is known to be great for your vision – it contains lutein and zeaxanthin. It can also help you prevent blood clots. 

In conclusion

Based on your eating habits and fitness goals, you can choose your solution. Make sure you are not having allergies to the milk substitutes or gluten sensitivity, and choose the best solution accordingly. You will be surprised how rich and creamy these plant-based milk substitutes taste. Your gut and your health will be thankful for making this transition. There is nothing wrong with consuming cow’s milk but be daring to discover more flavors of life.

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About The Author

Stacey is a freelance writer living in Minnesota with her cat, and she’s passionate about yoga, languages, home improvement, and drinking strong coffee. Find her on Twitter @StaceyShann0n

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