Milk Alternatives, Part 4: Almond Milk


Almond Milk: Not Quite Milk!

Important Considerations
Important things to review when you make a decision on a milk replacement: added sugar, adequate calcium content, adequate B12, additives, dietary needs, and cost.  
Almond Milk
Organic White Almond Milk in a Jug

Almond milk is not a terrible replacement for milk as long as you can get past the slightly nutty flavor. It is made by blending almonds or almond butter with water and then straining the mixture to remove the particulate matter. The flavor is a nutty flavor with a creamy texture. It is tolerable but I would not compare it to milk.

Commercial almond milk comes in a variety of brands and flavors, but it often has sugar added. As long as you can tolerate it, the no sugar added version is pretty healthy.

Almond milk: Almond milk is sweet with a creamy texture similar to dairy milk. It is made from ground almonds, water, and a sweetener.  Almond milk is naturally lactose-free and low in saturated fat.  Unlike hemp milk, it is more moderate in Calcium content, but it still requires fortification.  Almond milk is a diet-friendly because it’s low in calories as long as you avoid the sweetened versions. It will work in baked cooks and some recipes.

  • Nutrition: One Cup: 60 calories, 2.5g fat, 0g saturated fat, 1 gram protein, 0-7 grams sugar, 45 percent DV calcium, and 25 percent DV vitamin D.  Almond milk also offers riboflavin, vitamin B12, and zinc. 
  • Advantages: Almond milk is a good source of vitamin E.  It is heart healthy.  It is also extremely low in calories with nearly 1/3 of the calories of 2 percent cow’s milk and much less sugar than most alternatives.  
  • Disadvantages: Almond milk must be avoided if you have nut allergies.  Almond milk less protein than dairy, hemp, or soy milk.  It also doesn’t have the vitamins, minerals and fatty acids found in dairy milk and must be fortified.
Almond vs. Fairlife Milk
Almond vs. Fairlife Milk

The Bottom Line: Almond milk is a less than ideal replacement for milk. It has a nut-like flavor and is creamy. It is not too sweet, but in my opinion, almond is no match for a rich and creamy flavor of milk. Also, the color is an off off-white that is no match for milk and just not as appealing at the titanium white of dairy. That being said, it might be a good choice for those that can’t have dairy and those trying to lose weight.

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About the Author

I am a family physician who has served in the US Army. In 2016, I found myself overweight, out of shape, and unhealthy, so I made a change to improve my health. This blog is the chronology of my path to better health and what I have learned along the way.

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