Mad about Milk: Its Types, Nutritional Value, and Benefits - Be Healthy Today

Mad about Milk: Its Types, Nutritional Value, and Benefits

Everyone is familiar with milk. It’s the first thing we’re introduced to when we were newborns. Milk is a very nutritious fluid in the udders of dairy cows. It contains almost every single nutrient that the human body needs for optimum performance.

Nutritional Value

Milk is a very good source of high-quality protein. These are divided into two categories, which are whey proteins and casein. It is also a good source of healthy fat.

Its vitamin and mineral content is high as well. It particularly has large amounts of calcium, phosphorus, and vitamins B12 and ribofalvin (B2). It also has vitamins A, B1, B3, B5, B6, D, E, and K and folate. The minerals found in this liquid are magnesium, potassium, zinc, and selenium.   

Types of Milk

Almond

This is from almonds. It possesses a creamy texture and has a nutty flavor. It’s great for the lactose intolerant since it doesn’t contain lactose or cholesterol.

Did you know you can make your own blend at home? That’s right, all you need is a trusty blender, some almonds, and water.  

Of all the different types of milk, almond has the highest amount of calcium. It has 45 percent of the daily recommended serving. So if you want to make sure your bones are healthy and strong, almond milk is the way to go.

Soy

It’s another plant-based drink from soybeans. You soak dry beans and grind them in water. It is a stable mix of protein, oil, and water. It’s also great for those who are lactose intolerant since it doesn’t contain any dairy.

This type is a great choice in making healthy smoothies. It has a thicker and sweeter taste as compared to almond milk.  

Rice

This beverage is made from brown rice. You first press the rice through a mill. Diffusion is used to strain out the pressed grains. Compared to the other types, this one has more carbohydrates. However, it has a lesser amount of calcium and protein. It also does not have lactose or cholesterol. It is commonly unsweetened, so you might want to use some honey for some sweetness.

Hemp

Now don’t get it twisted. No, you will not get high if you drink this. Though this does come from the same plant as marijuana, it uses the seeds. It does not contain the chemical THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which is found in marijuana. This is because the hemp seeds are blended with water, then the mixture is filtered.

Plain organic hemp milk has no sugar and cholesterol. It is also gluten-free and has no soy. This drink has a creamy consistency that’s thicker than other milk. It also gives off a nutty flavor.

As a healthier and lighter alternative to heavy cream, you can use hemp milk instead in your mashed potatoes. It still gives texture and flavor without the added guilt.

Flax

This is the most recent type of milk introduced in the healthy world. It’s simply cold-pressed flax oil mixed with filtered water. It has no cholesterol and no lactose. Flaxseed is one of the best natural appetite suppressants, so it’s also great to use for people who want to lose weight.

It tastes mildly nutty, but quite bland overall.

Hazelnut

Hazelnut milk is yet another plant-based alternative to dairy milk. This drink is taken from hazelnuts. This milk is naturally gluten-free, soy-free, and lactose-free. This means it’s safe for anyone to drink. It has no saturated fat or cholesterol. It also has a low calorie content. Adding hazelnuts into your diet can do wonders to your hair and skin. Its vitamin E content promotes healthy hair and smooth, younger-looking skin.

It doesn’t taste like dairy milk at all. It has a rich nutty flavor, similar to almond milk, but a little stronger. It’s great to add a distinct creamy taste to your favorite cup of coffee.

Coconut

Coconut milk is the liquid you get from the grated meat of mature coconuts. This type is a very popular ingredient in many tropical cuisines, like Filipino, Cambodian, Indonesian, and Malaysian. It’s also popular in Caribbean, Brazilian, and Pacific Island cuisines.

It has a creamy texture. Its taste is naturally sweet.

Oat

This drink is ready to conquer the “healthy alternatives to dairy milk” world. You soak steel-cut oats in water. Next, you blend the mixture and strain it. What results is a watery milky substance, the oat milk. It’s lactose-free and very low in fat.

It boasts a mild and slightly sweet taste. It’s perfect to use in your pancakes.

Cashew

This is one of the blends that not everyone has heard of. Many people find it the easiest to make at home. All you need are some cashews, water, your sweetener of choice (you can use honey here), vanilla extract, and a dash of sea salt. You first soak the cashews overnight, then drain the water in the morning. Blend the cashews with two cups of water until completely pulverized. Next you can add the rest of the ingredients and continue to blend.

What’s good about it is the cashews retain all its fiber and nutrients. It’s very creamy and buttery. It closely resembles the texture and the look of dairy milk.

Goat

Many Americans know that milk generally comes from cows. That’s what we’re all drinking. But to the rest of the world, goat’s milk is more popular—and it’s tastier too.

This drink is easier to digest. This is because the fat globules in goat milk are smaller. It’s also lower in lactose (milk sugars) than that from the cow.    

Skim

This is when you remove all the cream (or the milkfat) from the whole milk. Historically, it was used to fatten pigs up. It was considered the best supplement for growing pigs as it made the feed more palatable and provided complete protein.

It has a much lower calorie content as compared to whole. But it contains the same amount of vitamins, minerals, and protein. It tastes quite watery and bland.

Whole

The last of the types of milk, this contains all its elements with no alterations. It has saturated fat and quite a high calorie content. But its taste? Thick, creamy, and rich. Just the way milk is supposed to be.

Milk Benefits

Milk generally is a nutritious drink. That’s why our moms always encouraged us to drink up. Here are just a few benefits you can get from drinking one to two glasses of milk every day.

Provides Strong Bones and Teeth

Of course, the most well-known benefit of drinking milk is it keeps our bones and teeth strong! Its because of its high calcium content, which is important for healthy bones. Little children are encouraged to drink their milk while their bones are still growing. Adults are encouraged to drink milk too to avoid osteoporosis as they get older.

This drink also prevents cavities and tooth decay.

Helps in Weight Loss

Most of the plant-based milks are great if you want to lose weight. They all basically have no cholesterol, no saturated fat, and either very low or no calorie content. So if you’re whipping up weight loss smoothies, you can take your pick from either of these milks.

Gives Glowing Skin

It has lactic acid, and this acts as an exfoliant and has enzymes to smoothen skin. It also has amino acids. This keeps the skin moisturized. Also, it has antioxidants that fight against environmental toxins that harm the skin. There are even rumors that soaking in milk in your tub softens your skin.  

Helps in Muscle Growth

The protein in milk improves the growth and proper building of the body’s muscles. It also prevents muscle soreness. In addition, it also replenishes the fluids lost during a heavy workout or any kind of physical activity.

Lessens Stress

A warm glass of warm milk at the end of the day beats all your stresses away. It relaxes tense muscles and soothes frayed nerves. This drink also reduces the symptoms of PMS. It also boosts energy.

Eliminates Heartburn

After eating too fast or eating to much, a number of people experience heartburn. Heartburn is from acid reflux. This is when some of the stomach contents are forced back up to the esophagus. This creates a burning pain in the lower chest.

What milk does is it coats the esophagus and stomach lining. Its cool sensation and thick consistency prevents heartburn.

Improves Heart Health

The calcium content reduces cardiovascular disease and reduces the chances of strokes. A study in Japan shows a correlation between daily calcium intake and a reduction in stroke, cardiovascular disease, and atherosclerosis. In addition, milk’s magnesium and potassium content reduces blood pressure, increases the blood flow to the body’s vital organs, and also reduces heart and cardiovascular stress.

Kate B. Forsyth is a writer for Be Healthy Today, who specializes in health and nutrition. Her passion is to help people get an overall transformation of health that lasts a lifetime. In her blog posts, she goes beyond research by providing health-concerned citizens doable and simple tricks to achieve a healthier lifestyle.

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