Milk

How to choose the healthiest milk alternative

Oat? Coconut? Almond? It’s easy to get bogged down in the endless choices of dairy milk alternatives.

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All of these “milks” mimic dairy milk, which is packed with protein, calcium, and essential vitamins like B12, A, and D. But dairy milk isn’t the only place to get these important nutrients in our diet.

But which one is the healthiest for you?

Here are the facts.

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Soy Milk

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Soy milk is packed with B vitamins, often fortified with calcium, and contains more protein than other plant-based milks.

Almond Milk

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Almond milk contains less protein and calcium than dairy milk, and can contain a lot of added sugar. Some brands fortify their almond milk with calcium.

Oat Milk

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Oat milk provides fiber and vitamin E, but it’s considered high in carbohydrates and low in protein and calcium. Oat milk is also not gluten-free.

Coconut milk

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This high-fat milk may be great for curries, but it’s low in protein and not considered a nutritional substitute for dairy milk.

Rice Milk

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This high carb, high sugar milk also has a high glycemic index, which means the glucose is more readily released into the bloodstream. It also doesn’t contain much protein.

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Each milk alternative comes with its own pros and cons. For the healthiest choice, look for unsweetened varieties fortified with a similar amount of calcium to that provided by dairy milk.

Read a deeper dive of the nutrition of milk-alternatives here.

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