Whether you’re a health buff looking for a less fattening and healthier milk alternative or you’re someone who just wants to enjoy a tall glass full of chocolate flavored milk without the guilt, there’s a good chance that you’ve heard about almond milk before. You may have even tried it and decided it’s tasty enough to buy a few cartons. But did you know that there’s more to drinking almond milk than being just a tasty, low-fat, and lactose-free way of enjoying the creamy and nourishing stuff?
Yes, in fact there is, and it has to do with several robust health benefits that you can enjoy if you make a habit of it. So if you need any more reason to start liberally enjoying almond milk, here are those benefits, described in full for your convenient perusal.
It fills you up with essential vitamins and nutrients
One of the biggest benefits of drinking nut-based milk—such as almond milk—is the vitamins and nutrients that you can get from every glassful. Such goodies include muscle-building protein, vitamin E for a healthy immune system, thiamine for good blood circulation, magnesium for energy, and more. All these can result in you feeling good and energized throughout the entire day.
Now, let’s be clear here: no plant-based milk alternative would ever be able to match up to the nutritional profile of dairy milk. However, they can get pretty close, and even outdo dairy milk in certain categories, such as in riboflavin content. Furthermore, popular almond milk brands also fortify their products with additional vitamin D, protein, and calcium, so you’re not missing out on too much if you do drink almond milk as a complete substitute for dairy milk.
It’s less fattening
Another huge benefit of consuming nut-based milks is that they’re much less fattening than whole dairy milk, clocking in at around 39 calories per cup. That can go even lower, down to 25 calories or so when you go with unsweetened or unflavored varieties. This means that you can drink as much almond milk as you want without worrying about your weight or your waistline.
This comes with an important caveat, however. As we all know, almonds do contain quite a high amount of calories on their own, so depending on just how much almond content was used in the creation of your chosen almond milk brand, it could have even more calories than what we listed here. Moreover, some “unsweetened” or “unflavored” brands may have specific flavor additives that also add to the calorie count of each serving. To be completely sure, try to check and compare nutritional tables of each almond milk brand before buying and drinking. Also, don’t go beyond your current calorie deficit!
It’s perfect for lactose-intolerant milk lovers and those with dairy allergies
Almond milk, just like any other nut-based milk around, is completely free of dairy and lactose. This means that those with any debilitating allergic reactions to dairy will be able to consume almond milk, without having to worry on whether or not the next gulp will land them in the hospital. What’s more, those who are lactose-intolerant will also be able to drink their fill of almond milk without suffering the usual pain, bloating, and diarrhea that usually comes after a glassful of so of white creamy goodness.
It can protect you from heart disease
Many studies about the regular consumption of almonds have stated that they do have a protective effect against heart disease. This protective effect is thanks to the massive amounts of vitamin E and natural omega-3 fatty acids inherent in the nut variety, both of which can help improve the circulatory system by preventing lipid oxidization and blood pressure respectively. Logically, almond milk should bestow the same kind of heart-healthy benefit once consumed.
Of course, the above is only true if the almond milk is processed via a method called “cold pressing”. It’s a known fact that when heat is used in the production or manufacture of food products, it kills off a significant amount of vitamins and minerals inherent in the ingredients, resulting in a less nutritional final product. Cold pressing only involves pressure and nothing else, allowing those precious vitamins and fatty acids to remain intact in the milk. So make sure that the brand you’re buying is made using the cold press technique.
It can help your bones become stronger and more solid
Besides its fortified calcium content, which is essential for keeping your bones and teeth healthy and firm, almond milk is also fortified with vitamin D. Vitamin D not only aids in bone health and stability, but also eliminates fatigue and strengthens muscles. This makes it perfect for weightlifters and bodybuilders whose musculoskeletal systems undergo enormous amounts of stress every day. It’s also great for women seeking to stave off the effects of osteoporosis with additional vitamin D intake but are unfortunately lactose intolerant.
Don’t underestimate almond milk as just some new-age alternative to dairy milk. In fact, besides being healthier and friendlier to your digestion—especially if you’re lactose-intolerant—you may find it even tastier than dairy milk. This is because it carries with it the same nutty flavor that a handful of almonds has, only creamier and smoother. Try it today and see for yourself what you’ve been missing!