Over time, almond milk, a healthful beverage made from nuts, has gained a lot of popularity.
Since almond milk has a mild flavor, many consumers prefer it to other plant-based milk alternatives. It can be used as a substitute for dairy milk, so you could see it in recipes for coffee, oatmeal, or baking.
By soaking, crushing, and filtering raw almonds, you can prepare almond milk. Nutrients including calcium, riboflavin, vitamin E, and vitamin D may be added to commercial almond milk to increase its nutritional value.
It’s fantastic for people who cannot or do not want to consume dairy products like cow’s milk, but many others drink it simply because they enjoy the flavor.
This article explores 11 almond milk health advantages supported by research and provides instructions for making your own.
Has a Varied Nutritional Composition
Nutrients that are good for your health can be found in almond milk.
When compared to dairy milk or the majority of other plant-based milk substitutes, the unflavored variant has very little calories.
A 3.5-ounce (100-gram) portion of plain, unsweetened almond milk has the following nutrients:
- 15 calories
- 0.3 grams of carbs
- 0.3 grams of fiber
- 0 grams sugar
- 0.6 grams of protein
- 1.2 grams of fat
- 6% of the daily value for vitamin A (DV)
- 22% of the DV for vitamin E
- 9% of the DV for vitamin D
- 1% of the DV for potassium
- 17% of the DV for calcium
- 4% of the DV for phosphorus
Since almond milk is frequently used in place of dairy milk, most producers will add vitamins and minerals to the finished product to ensure that consumers who avoid dairy do not lose out on important nutrients.
Calcium and the vitamins A, E, and D can all be found in abundance in fortified almond milk.
Aids in the Management of Weight
Drinks made from plants typically have fewer calories than milk made from normal dairy. A switch to almond milk may help people achieve their objective of consuming fewer calories.
It is frequently possible to lose weight or encourage weight loss by consuming fewer calories from food.
Depending on your goals, making minor switches from high-calorie items to low-calorie foods can help you reduce or maintain your calorie intake.
Reducing the amount of energy you consume from meals may help with weight management, according to a review of 67 studies.
Almond milk is naturally low in calories, but many commercial types are sweetened or flavoured with additional sugars. If you’re worried about it, it’s crucial to study the nutrition label and ingredient list as different brands may add varying levels of sugar.
Furthermore, homemade, unfiltered almond milk may still include more almonds, increasing its calorie content.
Almond milk is inherently low in carbs, especially the unsweetened kinds.
The majority of the 0.3 grams of carbohydrates in a 3.5-ounce (100-gram) portion of almond milk is dietary fiber. Comparatively, the same volume of dairy milk has roughly 4.6 grams of carbs in the form of the natural sugar lactose.
Remember that commercially available sweetened types of almond milk and other plant milk may have additional sugars, which can cause their carbohydrate content to increase significantly.
Added sugars have a high absorption rate and can quickly raise blood sugar levels.
Some persons with health issues, such those who have diabetes, may need to keep an eye on the quantity and kind of carbohydrates in their diets.
The effects of sugar-sweetened drinks (SSBs) on the risk of type 2 diabetes were assessed in one analysis of five research. The review found a link between frequent SSB consumption and a higher risk of type 2 diabetes.
Options with less carbohydrates, like unsweetened almond milk, can make it simpler to control blood sugar levels.
Switching from SSBs to alternatives, like tea or coffee without milk, was linked to a 20% lower risk of type 2 diabetes in a research involving 27,662 adults.
A Top Source of Vitamin E
Almond milk is a top source of vitamin E, providing 22% of the daily required amount in a single 3.5-ounce (100-gram) serving.
Strong antioxidants like vitamin E may help your body fight inflammation and stress.
Free radicals are surplus chemicals that might harm your cells; antioxidants clear them up. These free radicals may have a role in the onset of disease, inflammation, and stress.
There is evidence that vitamin E’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant qualities may also help lower your chance of developing cancer.
In addition to preventing cancer and heart disease, vitamin E may also improve bone and eye health.
Furthermore, vitamin E might help the body burn fat by enhancing this process.
In one experiment, mice that had trouble removing blood-borne fat molecules were given a vitamin E supplement for eight weeks. The accumulation of fat deposits was reduced, lowering the mice’s likelihood of developing heart disease.
To substantiate these assertions, more human study is necessary.
Frequently Enhanced With Vitamin D
Heart health, bone density, and immune system performance are just a few of the health benefits of vitamin D.
When your skin is in contact with sunshine, your body can manufacture vitamin D. However, due to their skin tone, lifestyle, long work hours, or just living in a region with little sunlight, many people do not obtain enough vitamin D.
In fact, adults in the United States are most likely to be deficient in vitamin D.
Lack of vitamin D raises the risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, muscle weakness, problems with fertility, autoimmune diseases, and infectious infections.
In one study, 305 postmenopausal women were examined to see if vitamin D supplementation affected their bone mineral density (BMD). Some ladies consumed 1,000 IU of vitamin D daily for a full year.
According to the study’s findings, women with low blood levels of vitamin D showed an improvement in BMD compared to those with appropriate vitamin D intake.
These findings demonstrate the significance of maintaining optimal vitamin D levels for health. Overindulging might not, however, result in any further advantages.
Vitamin D is supplemented into many commercial goods, including almond milk, because very few foods naturally contain it.
3.5 ounces (100 grams) of fortified almond milk typically contain 5% of the daily value (DV) for vitamin D.
Vitamin D is not, however, added to all kinds of almond milk, including homemade almond milk. So, if you are not obtaining enough vitamin D through sunlight, it may be beneficial to look for additional food sources of the vitamin.
A Dependable Calcium Source
In many people’s diets, dairy milk serves as a significant calcium supply. 123 milligrams (mg) of calcium are present in a 3.5-ounce (100-gram) serving of whole milk, or about 12% of the daily value (DV).
Since almond milk is frequently used as a substitute for dairy milk, many producers add calcium to it to make sure consumers are not losing out.
A serving of 3.5 ounces (100 grams) of enriched almond milk has 17% of the daily value (DV) for calcium.
Youth and elderly individuals, in particular, can benefit from calcium’s various health advantages.
It contributes to the development and maintenance of strong bones and normal blood pressure. Additionally, it might lower your risk of fractures and osteoporosis.
After consuming calcium- and vitamin D-fortified yogurt for 84 days, a group of women 65 and older with BMD had faster bone growth than those who had non-fortified yogurt, according to research.
Making almond milk at home may necessitate adding other calcium-rich foods to your diet, such as cheese, yogurt, fish, nuts, legumes, and leafy greens.
Innately Free of Lactose
Given that almond milk is inherently lactose-free, it is a fantastic substitute for those who may be lactose intolerant.
People who have lactose intolerance find it difficult to digest lactose, a sugar contained in dairy milk. According to estimates, it has an impact on 65-70% of adults worldwide.
It is brought on by a lack of lactase, an enzyme that transforms lactose into a more palatable form. Genetics, aging, or particular medical conditions could all contribute to this insufficiency.
Intolerance can result in a number of unpleasant symptoms, such as gas, bloating, and stomach pain.
White persons of European heritage are least likely to have lactose intolerance; 5–17% of them are affected. However, rates could be as high as 50–100% in South America, Africa, and Asia.
Since so many people have lactose intolerance, plant-based substitutes that are inherently lactose-free, like almond milk, allow consumers to safely enjoy dishes that would otherwise include dairy.
Vegan and Free of Dairy
Some people decide not to consume dairy milk for ethical, moral, or environmental grounds, including veganism.
Almond milk is suitable for vegans because it is plant-based and naturally dairy-free. Most people who want or need to limit dairy can use it. For those who have a tree nut allergy, it is not a secure solution.
Almond milk does not contain the proteins that cause a milk allergy because it is a dairy-free product. There are 0.5–3.5% of people who have the food allergy.
An allergy develops when the immune system of the body overreacts to compounds found in the environment, many of which would not normally be dangerous. A severe allergy may even pose a life-threatening threat.
Between 2 and 3 percent of newborns and young children also suffer from milk allergy. Almond milk is substantially lower in protein than dairy milk, thus it might not be a good substitute for them (37, 38).
To discover a specific formula for infants with milk allergies, you might need to consult a medical expert.
Phosphorous Content Is Low, and Potassium Content Is Modest
Due to its high potassium and phosphorus content, milk is frequently avoided by people with chronic kidney disease (CKD). This is because there is a chance that these nutrients will accumulate in the blood if your kidneys are unable to adequately discharge them.
Your risk of heart disease, hyperparathyroidism, and bone disease may increase if you have too much phosphorus in your blood. In the meanwhile, having too much potassium may increase your chance of having a heart attack and having an irregular heartbeat.
In comparison, almond milk has only 30 mg of phosphorus and 60 mg of potassium per 3.5 ounces (100 grams), but dairy milk has 101 mg of phosphorus and 150 mg of potassium.
For those with CKD, almond milk might be a good dairy substitute. You must study the nutrition label because the levels of these nutrients may vary from brand to brand.
In a limited study, subjects who had their phosphate levels maintained low for 40 weeks experienced a 64% decrease in the release of the hormone FGF23. That hormone raises the risk of heart disease and aids in bone deterioration.
In a different study, blood samples were taken from 911,698 persons who had diabetes, heart failure, or chronic kidney disease. After 18 months, researchers discovered that all-cause death was more likely in people with potassium levels over 5 mmol/L.
Your specific needs and restrictions if you have renal disease may change depending on your illness stage and your current potassium and phosphorus blood levels.
But keep in mind that a lot of people don’t need to limit their potassium and phosphorus intake, and the majority of people don’t get enough potassium. It’s crucial to get enough of these necessary nutrients.
Before changing your diet, always consult a healthcare provider because they could have an impact on your health.
Encourages Beautiful Skin
Both adults and teenagers who consume dairy milk may get acne.
One study with 24,452 adults found a possible link between regular dairy consumption and acne.
However, the relationship between dairy milk consumption and acne is not fully understood, and the evidence can be contradictory.
Almond milk might be a good choice if you’re worried about acne and want to clear up your skin. This is due to the fact that several types of almond milk are superior providers of vitamin E.
Strong antioxidant vitamin E may aid in the body’s removal of potentially harmful free radicals that might harm your skin.
Free radicals are inevitable molecules that can be produced by both typical bodily functions and external factors like cigarette smoke and air pollutants.
36 women over the age of 35 who participated in the trial drank a collagen- and vitamin-rich beverage for 12 weeks, including 2.3 mg of vitamin E. In comparison to a group that did not drink the beverage, the results demonstrated improvements in skin hydration, elasticity, and density.
These findings imply that vitamin E might be important for maintaining healthy skin. Vitamin E by itself, however, cannot be solely blamed for the consequences. So eating a balanced, healthy diet that includes vitamin E may help to support healthy skin.
Promotes Heart Health
Almond milk is a product made from plants. It can help you boost the amount of plant-based foods you consume, which may support heart health.
Some people advocate for plant-based diets because they may help lower the risk of cardiometabolic conditions like heart disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.
In a study from New Zealand, 65 adults were divided into two groups. The control group continued to consume their regular diet, while the intervention group adhered to a low fat, whole-food, plant-based diet.
According to the study’s findings, the whole-food, plant-based group had lower total cholesterol and lower glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) levels after 12 weeks than the control group.
Red blood cells bind to HbA1c. HbA1c levels give an indication of how well blood sugar has been controlled during the previous few months.
Your risk of having heart disease can be decreased by lowering your cholesterol and HbA1c levels.
How to Create Homemade Almond Milk
You only need almonds and water to make 2 cups (473 mL) of almond milk at home. A blender and a nut milk bag are also required.
A half cup (65 grams) of raw almonds should first soak the following day. The soaked almonds and 2 cups (473 mL) of water should be added to a blender, and the mixture should be blended until it is creamy and milky.
Fill a nut milk bag with the mixture, then pour it over a big jug or basin. As soon as the majority of the milk has separated from the pulp, squeeze away any remaining moisture.
By changing the amount of water, you may make almond milk thicker or thinner.
To improve the flavor, you can wish to add a dash of honey or a touch of salt.
The milk can be stored in the refrigerator for up to five days.
Almond Milk Uses
Almond milk is a very adaptable beverage that works well as an alternative to dairy milk.
Here are some suggestions for including it into your diet:
- As a wholesome, energizing beverage
- In oats, muesli, or cereal
- In your hot chocolate, coffee, or tea
- Blended drinks
- In recipes for baking and cooking, such those for muffins or pancakes
- In dressings, sauces, and soups
- Ice cream made from scratch
- Organic almond yogurt
Almond milk has become more and more well-liked as a pleasant, healthy substitute for dairy milk. It might also improve heart and skin health.
Nutrients like calcium and vitamins A, E, and D have been added to several commercial versions of almond milk. When switching from dairy to almond milk, fortification enables consumers to obtain all the essential elements that milk typically offers.
Almond milk is also suitable for the majority of those who have lactose intolerance, a dairy allergy, or renal disease as well as those who are vegan or refrain from dairy for other reasons.
Consider combining it into smoothies, putting it in your coffee or cereal, or using it in ice cream, soup, or sauce dishes.