We’ve all been told since we were children to make sure to drink our milk for calcium and strong bones. But an ethical focus coming more and more in to play, it’s time to see how cow’s milk really stacks up against it’s cruelty-free alternatives. Sure, it may be high in protein and vitamin D but it has a high fat content, high sugar content and high calories. What about the non-dairy ones?
Coming, as the name suggests, from soybeans, it’s no wonder that this variation of milk is really high in protein. In fact, it has very nearly the same amount as cow’s milk but half the calories and a third of the carbs. It’s also a good source of vitamin A, vitamin B-12, potassium, and isoflavones, plus it can be fortified with calcium and vitamin D.
Almond milk is made from ground almonds and filtered water and is a pretty popular plant-based choice. However, obviously the downfall is that a large number of people have nut allergies and so this milk is not suitable for those. But if you can have it then you should certainly consider it. It boasts low calorie content and zero saturated fat and while it may not be a great natural source of calcium or protein, a lot of brands fortify the milk with these nutrients.
This one is slowly creeping up in popularity, thanks largely to it’s sweet taste which is a very close match for dairy milk. It’s also highly nutritious! A cup of oat milk contains 36 percent of the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of calcium and 10 percent of the RDA for vitamin A, which is twice as much as cow’s milk. It’s also rich in iron, low in fat and free from cholesterol. When you compare that with cow’s milk (which contains 24mg of cholesterol per serving), it’s no wonder that this is becoming such a fan favourite.
Despite the name, coconuts are not actually nuts, making this milk great for those with nut allergies. It’s also great for using in baking, thanks to its naturally sweet, creamy taste. However, if you’re looking for a non-dairy milk that packs some nutrients then coconut milk may not be the best choice. It’s low in protein and does not naturally contain calcium, vitamin A, or vitamin D (although, it can be fortified with these nutrients). And while it may seem high in saturated fat, it’s actually a kind that could help with weight loss.
Of course, there are more options than just these few popular ones. There’s rice milk, pea milk, hemp milk, banana milk – the list goes on and on. So if you want to cut down on fat, help the environment and shrink your animal consumption then now might just be the best time to do it.