Non-dairy beverages are mainly consumed by those who suffer from lactose intolerance or by those who follow a vegan diet. They’re also a healthy option for anyone regardless of intolerances or eating styles.
Below, we’ll show you what the main types of non-dairy beverages are and the characteristics and composition of each of them. You’ll be surprised to know that there are so many types and that they have so many properties that you can take advantage of.
1. Soy milk
Of all the non-dairy beverages, soy is the most frequently consumed around the world and this type of milk has many years of history. Currently, it’s in any supermarket, and you can find different versions of this product, such as vanilla or chocolate soy milk.
If you opt for one of these dairy substitutes you have to take into account their high sugar content, especially if diabetic people or children are going to drink it. A much healthier variant is to buy natural soy milk and add cocoa, sweetener or any other option that you like at home.
Like milk, soy milk contains a large amount of protein and carbohydrates. It’s also rich in fiber, calcium and B vitamins. As you can see, it’s a highly recommended and very healthy option.
2. Rice milk
This drink is made from rice flour and rice protein. It’s also possible to make it at home without too much hassle. Rice milk is especially recommended for those with digestive difficulties. Of all the non-dairy kinds of milk, it’s the one that’s best digested, which facilitates the process of digestion.
The only thing you should keep in mind before consuming this drink is that rice contains a large amount of starch. In other words, it’s not recommended for diabetics. Although it doesn’t contain extra sugar, the starch from the rice itself will contribute significantly to raising blood sugar levels.
In addition, rice milk contains antioxidants such as magnesium or selenium, which strengthens the immune system and helps prevent diseases.
3. Coconut milk
Coconut milk may be the least well known non-dairy beverage. The truth is that many products can be derived from this fruit, both food, and personal care products.
Coconut milk is made from the fruit’s pulp. As it’s very thick it’s diluted with a large amount of water until it acquires the desired density.
The main properties of coconut milk are the high content of mineral salts such as phosphorus or calcium. On the other hand, its main drawback is that it’s the non-dairy beverage with the highest number of calories. The culprits of this are saturated fats and carbohydrates.
With all this, we don’t mean that it’s an unhealthy drink, but it must be consumed in moderation. If you’re one of those people who drink several glasses of milk a day, you have to keep in mind that there are much healthier non-dairy options.
4. Almond milk
Almond milk is the result of peeling toasted almonds and blending them with water. As the base is almonds, it turns out to be a great source of carbohydrates. Regarding the rest of nutrients, several are added in the manufacturing process at the same time that water is added, making it a less natural option than the rest.
Although it has many benefits, almond milk has a great disadvantage- the high sugar content. That’s why we recommend that you carefully examine the composition before opting for one or another brand.
If you’re intolerant to lactose, vegan or simply looking for an alternative to cow’s milk, you can find many options in your usual supermarket. As you can see, you can continue enjoying a delicious glass of milk, a dessert or any other product very similar to traditional dairy with hardly any changes.