“Milk was a bad choice,” Ron Burgandy (Anchorman), turns out to be an accurate depiction of how most of us feel after having dairy milk. As most of the world’s population is lactose intolerant, with current stats saying 75%! Though some countries in Asia have over 90% intolerance! Making lactose intolerance the norm, not the exception.
Still, the main push for dairy milk is calcium for strong bones, yet there are a number of studies linking dairy consumption with increased risk of osteoporosis, and hip fractures in women.
Then there’s cancer risk. Wow, this got dark, fast. From comedy to cancer in just two short paragraphs! But it’s important. Casein, the main protein in dairy milk is associated with cancer growth and risk - this includes breast cancer and prostate cancer.
If that doesn’t put you off, there are many more issues associated with it. According to PCRM, only three glasses of milk a day will increase your risk of death by 93%.
If that’s enough to spark your concern (and I hope it is), read on because we’re going to share what to look out for when buying alternatives, the health benefits of each and recommended brands to get you started.
Issues with alternative milks to look out for.
Lab made ingredients
Of course, the usual preservatives, colours, flavours, chemicals or gums are to be avoided. Instead of knowing all the names of all the different preservatives, colours, flavours, and chemicals, simply avoid ingredients that have a number. For example, stabilisers (460, 466). Easily done.
Added oils like sunflower oil, canola oil, corn oil, safflower oil and sunflower oil. These oils are often used as fillers, are highly processed, and often rancid.
Thickeners like maltodextrin are similar to corn syrup but with less sugar. Maltodextrin has no nutritional value, can negatively alter the gut microbiome, and disrupt hormonal balance because of it’s low glycemic index, causing blood sure to spike.
Especially when refined.
Think you’re safe with an organic product? Think again! Some cheaper organic brands still have oils and sometimes other filler ingredients. Most of the time ‘organic’ is a good sign, but don’t let it be the deciding factor.
Always check the labels of new brands. Otherwise, start using trusted brands, like the recommendations below.
Coconut milk is one of my favourite milks to buy because it’s very creamy. Coconut is also very healthy. It has natural antibacterial properties - great for the gut, and high amounts of vitamin C for improved immunity, and skin and cell repair.
A great value option is Coco Quench by Pure Harvest. This can be sourced in the long life milk section at most supermarkets and is organic.
So if you’ve never tried any milk alternatives before, you now have a great place to start. Of course, there are others available like oat, rice, and combination milks, so explore! Now that you know what to look for you can find your favourites!
Already have a favourite? Let us know in the comments below!