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Almond Milk vs Cow Milk vs Soy Milk vs Rice Milk — A Quick Pro & Cons List

Milk Bottles

One man’s meat is another’s poison. Such is the irony of life. Milk, in this case, is no different. Whether a specific type of milk is of help or disadvantage to you depends on the following factors; your dietary needs, whether or not you are on a diet, your taste and health.

Teenagers, expectant women and kids over the age of three subscribe into a group commonly referred to as the persons in critical development stages. They require calcium, proteins and Vitamin D in substantial amounts. Dairy milk is generous in the mentioned. Dairy milk, however, is not a wise choice for anyone looking to cut down on their weight. Medical research proves that milk has the highest cholesterol-calorie content in comparison to other types of milk.

This article details on the four major types of milk; and their pro and cons.

Milk

Cow Milk

Cow milk is also popularly referred to as dairy milk. There are four types of dairy milk; whole milk, 1 percent milk, milk free of lactose
and skimmed milk.

Whole milk is milk with all of its fat still intact. Research has shown that a cup of whole dairy milk has 8.5% solids free of fat, 88% water, and 8g of fats. Since the milk is still in its natural form, it still is rich in Vitamin D, proteins, calcium and fats.

The remaining types of, dairy milk either have some or all fat extracted from them. For this reason, whole milk ranks first in the calorie count chart. In one cup, the entire milk calorie count sits at 150 with the 1 percent and skimmed milk count is at 110 and 80 respectively. Lactose-free milk goes through processing to break down the lactose component in it. Like is the norm with all other types of milk, lactose-free milk is rich in minerals, proteins, vitamins, and calcium. The fat-cholesterol percentage in the milk is, however, varying.

Advantages of Cow Milk

  • The milk is, in comparison with the rest, in protein content.
  • The milk is a reliable source of fats, minerals, and vitamins for both the young and the elderly
  • The lactose-free option is available for the lactose intolerant.
  • Easily accessible in convenient and grocery stores.

Cons

Cow milk is rich in fats and calories. The above has not been pleasant experiences on some people who want to trim on their weight, or even some facing heart ailments and high cholesterol.

Milk Nutritional Values

Almond Milk

The milk is extracted from grounded almonds. Almond milk is known to be lower in calorie in comparison to all other types of milk. Additionally, the milk is free of lactose, cholesterol and saturated fats. Although almonds are rich in proteins, the same can not be said about almond milk. The milk is rich in calcium through the ones in our market are supplemented and fortified with vitamins.

Almond milk is made by mixing almonds with water and then putting it through a strainer to remove any remaining solids. It has a nutty flavour and soft creamy texture that is similar to cow’s milk. For this reason it is a popular choice for vegetarians and vegan’s alike who are are allergic or intollerant to dairy products.

Most brands of almond milk are enriched with vitamins, minerals or proteins. Controlled studies have linked whole almonds to a variety of healthy benefits, but many of them do not apply to Almond Milk. THis is because almond milk is strained and usually made rom blanched or skinless almonds.

Pros of Almond Milk

  • Low in calorie
  • Rich in Vitamin A and D
  • Is lactose-free
  • Unsweetened Almond Milk doesn’t raise blood sugar
  • It’s Dairy Free
  • It’s nutritious

Cons

  1. It isn’t the best source of calcium

Unsweetened Almond Milk

Soy Milk

The milk is extracted from soybeans. The milk is a favourite for the lactose intolerant and the vegans. Because it is obtained from plants, the milk is lactose-free and cholesterol free. Soy milk is rich in potassium, protein, and calcium.

Soy milk has been a substitute for cow’s milk for many decades and has the most balanced nutritional balance of all the 4 kinds of milk. It is also one of the most widely consumed for the health benefits offered by the phytonutrients present in milk also know as isoflavones, these phytonutrients have anti-carcinogenic properties which have helped prevent or delay various types and forms of cancer.

Many people dislike the bean type flavour and people are concerned about the presence of anti-nutrients, substances that may reduce the nutrient intake and digestion in your body.

Too much soy may be a problem for people with thyroid disease. A 2008 Harvard study showed that higher intakes of soy-based foods caused fertility problems and lower sperm counts. Soy is also a common allergen. People who are allergic to soy should not drink soy milk.

No matter what your reason you have for drinking soy milk, it is important to start out slowly as with any change in your diet and monitor any side effects you may have from drinking soy milk. Changes in what we eat and drink can affect our digestive and elimination processes.

Silk soy milk does not provide phosphorus or Vitamin C that milk does. However, it does provide just as much Calcium along with a larger amount of Vitamin D, Vitamin A and iron than milk does.

Pros of Soy Milk

  • Rich in potassium, protein, Vitamin A, D, and B12.
  • The milk almost has the same amount of protein as cow milk though it has a way much lower calorie count
  • Has no cholesterol

Cons of Soy Milk

Soy can be quite problematic to those with thyroids. It is also linked to infertility.

 

Soy Milk

Rice Milk

The milk is extracted from milled rice and water. The milk is not known to cause any allergies making it the best for people with nut or lactose allergies. Rice milk can generally be fortified with Calcium and Vitamin D, it’s really not a good natural source for either one of these vitamins, just like soy milk or almond milk. Rice milk is popular with vegetarians and vegans because as you probably know, it does not contain any animals products or by-products. Rice milk is also great for people who are lactose intolerant.

Rice Milk contains more carbohydrates than you would find in cow’s milk. Unlike cow’s milk, however, rice milk doesn’t contain lactose or cholesterol. This keeps your heart healthy and safe for those of us who are lactose intolerant.

Most commercial brands of rice milk are fortified with calcium. One cup of rice milk contains about 145 calories compared to 185 calories in a cup of cow’s milk and 98 calories in a cup of skimmed cow’s milk. Rice milk still contains more fat than skimmed cow’s milk.

Rice milk is a tasty alternative for vegans and vegetarians who are allergic to soy. While rice milk doesn’t offer the health benefits of soy, it’s still a healthy drink to consume.

Many people make their own rice milk at home which is easy and inexpensive to make, home-made rice milk doesn’t necessarily have the benefit of being nutritionally fortified.

Advantages of Rice Milk

  • Not known to bring about any allergies
  • Fortification promotes quality.
  • Rice Milk can be used by vegans which is a positive

Cons of Rice Milk

The milk is high in starch and low in proteins making it an unlikely choice for the elderly or the diabetic.

Rice Milk Nutritional Value

Conclusion

The good milk bad milk debate is a misplaced one. The appropriateness or inappropriateness of a type of milk depends on who is drinking it. What is good for you might be hazardous for another. In this match, all the four types of milk take the champions belt home, all in their own right. Take a look at the video below to see what a Nutritionist says about the various types of milk before you make your decision.

Milk, Soy Milk, Almond Milk or Rice Milk – Which is Better?

Sources

https://medium.com/@AyurvedaPalms/almond-milk-vs-cow-milk-vs-soy-milk-vs-rice-milk-a-quick-pro-con-list-of-these-different-milks-6589c232e479
https://www.healthline.com/health/milk-almond-cow-soy-rice
https://www.hellomagazine.com/cuisine/2015051925311/milk-cow-almond-rice-soy-health-benefits/



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About the Author Stephanie Hill

Stephanie Hill is the Chief Editor of Healthy Fixation and blogs regularly on various blogs and health and fitness topics. Stephanie provides personal advice on the latest health news and recommendations on health related issues and products.

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