I was asked earlier this week what was better for you; skimmed cow milk or soy milk. I thought more people might have the same question, so I figured I’d write it out in my blog:
What type of milk is best for you?
As a general rule of thumb, the less processed the better for you. When products are very processed they normally have less nutrients and often more chemicals (less natural). I believe a small glass of full cream milk is better than a big glass of skimmed milk. However, the milk from the cow is meant for the calves and contains a lot of hormones that may not be good for humans. Also, cows often eat food that contains chemicals that could be harmful to us. Personally I try to stay away from dairy all together and chose other alternatives. People often think you lose out on calcium if you don’t drink cow milk. There are a lot of foods that are high in this nutrient – such as poppy seeds (see Calcium). Also, if you go out in the sun and get some Vitamin D your body is able to absorb more of the calcium you provide it with!
In regards to soy, it is one of the most gene manipulated (GMO) foods out there. I therefore only chose organic soy products. Although most cafés only provide cow milk or soy milk (an not always organic), you can purchase several alternative types of milk in the grocery stores, such as:
- Almond milk
- Oat milk
- Rice milk
- Quinoa milk
My favorites are almond and oat milk.
One thing to look out for when buying these products are the sugar content. Some of them contains quite a bit, so just read the label. Otherwise you can MYO (make your own). I often make almond milk and change it up by using different ingredients to add some sweetness to the milk. Depending on how rich you want it to taste, you can increase amount of almonds per liter of water. You can also chose other sweetening ingredients instead of the coconut like I’ve used this time. Some examples are vanilla extract, honey, agave syrup, cinnamon or stevia.
Almond Milk Recipe
- 1.5 cup almonds
- 1 litre water
- 1 tbsp shredded coconut
Soak the almonds for 1-2 hrs, rinse and put them in the blender with the water and vanilla extract. Mix for approximately 30 seconds. A good tip is to only put some of the water in first and mix it so that it almost turns into almond porridge. This will help the almonds to be chopped finer. Moreover, if your blender has a pulse function, this also helps cutting it into finer pieces. Pour the remaining water in and mix for 15 sec.
Filter the milk though a nut bag (can be found in most health stores) and the milk is ready to drink. You can use the pulp to make almond flour. Simply spread it out on a tray and put it in the oven for 20 min on low temperature. This is great to use in baking but also in cooking other food (e.g, when making vegetarian burger patties).
Uses of almond milk
Almond milk tastes great in coffee, tea (especially in Chai tea) and in hot chocolate. It is good to use in baking as well.