deepstash

Beta

Is it better to drink cow's milk or a dairy-free alternative?

Cow milk and the alternatives

Cow milk and the alternatives

It is important not to assume that milk alternatives are the same as cow's milk. 

  • Cow's milk is a very nutrient-dense food, and fortified plant milk doesn't always cover all nutrients. 
  • Cow's milk contains lactose, a naturally occurring sugar, while milk alternatives often contain added sugar, which is harmful to our health.

If you do decide to use a dairy-free alternative, you won’t necessarily be missing out on vital nutrients if you eat a balanced diet.

52 SAVES


This is a professional note extracted from an online article.

Read more efficiently

Save what inspires you

Remember anything

IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

Is it better to drink cow's milk or a dairy-free alternative?

Is it better to drink cow's milk or a dairy-free alternative?

https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20191123-what-milk-is-best-cows-dairy-free-alternative

bbc.com

8

Key Ideas

Nutrients in cow's milk

Cow’s milk is a good source of:
  • Protein 
  • Calcium
  • Vitamin B12 
  • Iodine
  • Magnesium, which is essential for bone development and muscle function.
  • Whey and casein that play a role in lowering blood pressure.

Calcium intake

  • If children between one and three consume half a pint of milk, they will consume enough calcium for healthy bone development. 
  • Calcium is crucial during our adolescence for the development of bone strength. If you don't get enough calcium in your teenage years, you run a higher risk of bone weakness.
  • For adults, research is conflicting on whether cow's milk helps to keep bones healthy.

Hormones in cow's milk

The estrogen levels of cows increase 20-fold when they are pregnant. Although one study linked estrogen levels to breast, ovarian and uterine cancers, ingesting hormones through cow's milk is no cause for concern.

Researchers found estrogen levels only affect the reproductive systems in mice when supplemented with 100 times the levels found in cow's milk.

Milk and heart diseases

There is a link between saturated fat and heart disease, but whole milk only contains around 3,5% fat, semi-skimmed around 1,5% and skimmed milk 0,3%.

Only very high milk intake can be harmful, but there's no research to suggest that moderate consumption is bad for you.

Lactose intolerance

Those with lactose intolerance can drink small amounts of cow's milk.

A nutrition scientist carried out a study comparing the symptoms of people with lactose intolerance when they drank two cups of soya milk, raw milk or regular milk every day. He found many of them didn’t suffer severe symptoms.

Dairy-free alternatives

Dairy-free alternatives for milk include soy, almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, coconuts, macadamia nuts, rice, flax, oats or hemp. The main ingredient is processed and diluted with water.

Soya milk is the best replacement for cow's milk in terms of protein. But the quality protein is substantially lower than milk, making it less suitable for children and the elderly.

Milk alternatives 

Milk alternatives are usually fortified with the nutrients that occur in cow's milk, such as calcium. Yet, it is not sure if fortified vitamins and minerals provide the same health benefits.

The bioavailability of calcium may be different when it's fortified compared to when it's found naturally.

Cow milk and the alternatives

It is important not to assume that milk alternatives are the same as cow's milk. 

  • Cow's milk is a very nutrient-dense food, and fortified plant milk doesn't always cover all nutrients. 
  • Cow's milk contains lactose, a naturally occurring sugar, while milk alternatives often contain added sugar, which is harmful to our health.

If you do decide to use a dairy-free alternative, you won’t necessarily be missing out on vital nutrients if you eat a balanced diet.

EXPLORE MORE AROUND THESE TOPICS:

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Best foods don’t have labels
Best foods don’t have labels

Because they are just one ingredient: avocado, lentils, blueberries, broccoli, almonds, etc.

There is no "best diet"

The “best” diet is a theme: an emphasis on vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans, lentils, nuts, seeds, and plain water for thirst. 

That can be with or without seafood; with or without dairy; with or without eggs; with or without some meat; high or low in total fat.

The "Age" of vegetables
The best vegetables are likely to be fresh and locally sourced, but flash frozen is nearly as good (as freezing delays aging). Those “fresh” vegetables that spend a long time in storage or transit are probably the least nutritious.

7 more ideas

170 million gallons
170 million gallons

...is the amount of sparkling water Americans drink each year.

Sparkling waters are the latest in health chic, providing all the fizzy refreshment of a soft drink with none of those wi...

Carbonated water

It describes water with carbon dioxide dissolved into it. 

CO₂ can be introduced through natural processes, or by artificially injecting the gas into water while it is under pressure. Its addition gives these beverages their satisfying hiss-pop and effervescence.

Can also be found under the name "sparkling water".

Classifying sparkling waters
  • Seltzer water: water with carbonation. May include natural flavors. No sugar or sodium.
  • Club soda adds sodium bicarbonate or potassium sulfate to carbonated water to elicit a minerally taste. No sugar.
  • Tonic water includes sugar, citric acid, preservatives, and quinine for flavoring. 
  • Mineral water: comes from an underground source with a minimum of 250 parts per million of total dissolved solids. These dissolved elements must come from the source and cannot be added later. Carbonation may be induced to make sparkling mineral water.

2 more ideas

Vegan fast food

Vegan fast food alternatives may often be worse for your health than the meat equivalent. It is good that people start to think about plant-based foods, but the danger lies in thinking t...

Plant-based protein menus

Plant-based protein sources are not the same as animal protein sources. Proteins are made up of amino acids which are the building blocks of every cell and hormone in our body. Meat protein contains all nine essential amino acids, whereas plant-based protein usually lacks at least one of the nine essential amino acids our body needs.

Unripe jackfruit makes a convincing choice for pulled pork alternatives, curries and burgers. But it is almost valueless if you needed protein since jackfruit consists of carbohydrates. Vegan burgers are made up of beans, but this is not a complete protein source.

Iron content

One study found that 25% of vegans (mainly women) had very low blood iron levels, compared to 0% of omnivores.

Plants like whole grains, legumes and spinach are high in iron but is not always the best type. Animal sources contain haem iron. Non-haem iron, found in plants, is not as well absorbed by the body.

2 more ideas