Over the past 10 years, dairy-free, plant-based milks have gained a lot of interest. They are great alternatives for managing cow milk allergy, lactose intolerance and prevalence of high cholesterol and a potential solution to environmental animal welfare concerns. Plant-based milks are a great milk alternative in a varied diet and has several advantages, read on for Top 5 Health Benefits of Dairy-Free Milk!
1. Low calorie
250ml or a glass of almond or coconut milk contain half the calories of cow’s milk. Having a glass of dairy-free milk offers a great keep fit, calorie cutting advantage. It is an ideal low-calorie alternative in the case of lactose intolerance or milk allergies as well.
2. Vitamin and mineral enriched
The dairy-free milks are normally enriched with B vitamins, calcium and vitamin D. This is handy for those who restrict or do not eat animal based products. Most animal products are rich in vitamin D which can be hard to intake on plant-based diets without supplementation or non-nutritional source such as sunshine.
3. Animal and environmentally friendly alternative
Consuming dairy-free milk goes with ethical and moral principles of sustainable lifestyle. Greenhouse gas production and animal welfare is not as big of an issue with production of nut or cereal-based milks.
4. Heart healthy
There is no cholesterol in the dairy-free milks as cholesterol is only found in animal products. Also, plant-based milks are free of saturated fat and instead may be a source of omega-3 fats as, for example hemp milk is. Omega-3 fats have anti-inflammatory properties which is beneficial for healthy cardiovascular system.
5. Antioxidant rich
Phytochemicals in plants act as antioxidants. Isoflavones in soy milk are shown to be protective against cancer. Beta-glucan, a compound in the oat milk, is said to lower blood sugar which can be beneficial in blood glucose management.
Choosing non-dairy milk for clinical or health, or taste reasons is an easy option with such a great variety of plant-based milks nowadays. The thing to remember is to choose more natural varieties and perhaps sweeten with fruits and berries is a better choice. Using plant-based milk in a smoothie is an obvious option for spring and summer months. Otherwise, pouring it over cereal or bowl of berries can taste just as good.