Is Almond Milk Really Good For Your Health?
It is often said that almond milk has unique health benefits. This milk contains no saturated fat, has fewer calories, and seems to be rich in vitamins. Learn why it’s important to read the label, since some brands may contain controversial food additives and added sugar… So is almond milk really good for you?
Low in fat and calories
It’s a great milk substitute for those who would like to lose weight. It usually contains about 30 to 40 calories per cup, which is a low amount compared to other milks:
• Skim milk / soy milk: about 80 calories per cup
• Rice milk: about 120 calories per cup
• 2% fat milk: about 120 calories per cup
• Whole milk: about 140 calories per cup
No cholesterol, no lactose
Unlike animal milk, it contains neither cholesterol nor lactose. It can help lower cholesterol levels and is a good choice for anyone who has difficulty digesting dairy or soy. Research shows that it may be an efficacious substitute for cow milk in individuals with cow milk allergy/intolerance.
Is it rich in nutrients?
Surprisingly, unfortified almond milk is not very nutritious. This is why it’s often enriched with vitamins and minerals, like calcium and potassium. Each 8-ounce cup of plain almond milk contains only about 2 milligrams of calcium. Considering that the adequate intake is about 1,000 mg/day for adults, it’s certainly not a good source of calcium. However, after fortification, the amount is approximately equivalent than cow milk. It delivers about 30% of your daily need for calcium in each serving. The problem with fortified calcium is that it is usually less absorbed than calcium that naturally occurs in food.
Although almonds themselves are packed with protein, almond milk is not a good source of protein. One cup has only 1 gram of protein vs. 7 grams for soy. It also lacks B vitamins and contains more sodium than soy milk.