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Should you ditch dairy milk for almond milk? A nutritionist weighs in

Published on:24 April 2021, 12:51pm IST
It’s low-cal and it’s plant based. That’s why people are going gaga about almond milk. But, is it really that healthy, or should one skip it?
Nikita Bhardwaj
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side effects of almond milk
Many people are cutting out dairy from their diet and shifting entirely to almond milk but is it healthy to do so. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
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Veganism and adopting a plant-based diet is leading to an increasing number of people to cut out milk from their diet. Instead, they are adopting plant-based milk options made from ingredients such as soya, oats, and almond. 

Milk made from almonds is considered to be extremely healthy and everyone has been shifting to it, considering almonds truly are the powerhouse of nutrition. 

There is another school of thought that presents a different view of this situation.

Some people believe it’s all a marketing gimmick to fool people and encourage them to burn a hole in their pocket. To an extent, it’s kind of true because almond milk is quite expensive. Plus, you can always eat almonds for health benefits instead of investing in almond milk. So many questions come to mind, right? That’s why we asked nutritionist Manisha Chopra to throw some light on whether one should shift to almond milk or skip it.

Almond milk is nutritious

On the nutrition meter, almond milk looks something like this:

  • Calories: 39
  • Fats: 3 g
  • Proteins: 1 g
  • Carbs: 3.5 g
  • Fiber: 0.5 g
almond milk
Take care of your bones by adding a handful of almonds in your diet every day. Image Shutterstock

Seems perfect for those who are managing their weight and cholesterol levels.

4 reasons why you should switch to almond milk
1. Low in calories and carbs

Unsweetened almond milk is low in calories and carbohydrates, as compared to cow or buffalo milk. It does not cause a sudden rise in blood sugar levels and even patients who are dealing with diabetes can drink it without any problem.

2. Helpful for lactose intolerance

People who are intolerant to lactose face major problems like bloating, stomach ache, constipations, gas, etc. For them, plant-based substitutes are more than welcome. Lactose is not found in almond milk because it is a plant-based product.

“People who are lactose intolerant, are allergic to milk or following a vegan diet should opt for almond milk,” recommends Manisha.

3. High in calcium and magnesium

“Calcium is good for our bones and teeth. Also, it helps the body in fighting osteoporosis. Magnesium is important for controlling blood sugar levels in the body,” says Manisha.

4. High in antioxidants

Our body needs antioxidants not only to look beautiful but to boost our immunity. Almond milk contains nutrients and antioxidants that are essential for reducing damage from free radicals and cell-regeneration.

almond milk
It might not be a simple ‘stomach upset’ but lactose intolerance and that’s why you can opt for almond milk. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Unfortunately, there are minor downsides to consuming almond milk
  • Lacks protein: Almond milk contains only 1 gram of protein per cup. Protein is essential for health, playing an important part in muscle growth, hormone production and skin regeneration.
  • May contain additives: Processed almond milk may contain additives like sugar, flavour, salt, etc.
  • Not suitable for infants: Almond milk can prevent iron absorption and hence, it is not good for infants.

“People with nut allergies and infants should avoid almond milk,” warned Manisha.

Here’s how you can make it at home

If you think that buying almond milk is pretty expensive and you’re doubtful of its authenticity, then you can easily make it at home!

almond milk
A glass of almond milk is the magic elixir you’ve been looking for all your life. Image courtesy: Unsplash

You need only 2 ingredients: almonds and water. Add both the ingredients to a blender and churn it. Now, pass the mix through a sieve. Your almond milk is ready!

The last word

“Almond milk is quite healthy. It does have some downsides but the benefits outweigh them. It is a great plant-based product and is good for weight loss too. So, in my opinion there is no harm in opting for it,” concluded Ms Chopra.

Nikita Bhardwaj Nikita Bhardwaj

Six-pack abs are all that Nikita needs, along with her daily dose of green tea. At Health Shots, she produces videos, podcasts, stories, and other kick-ass content.