What kind of milk should I use
Soy milk, oat milk or hemp milk - which milk alternatives are the healthiest?
Anyone who opts for a plant-based alternative to cow's milk usually has good reasons for doing so: In addition to animal welfare, health is at the top of the list. Nobody has to do without enjoyment, because there is a large selection. But how healthy are the plant-based milk alternatives?
For a long time, “good milk” was considered a staple food. In bad times, it ensured the supply of calories for the rural population and provided important nutrients with otherwise very meager food. In contrast to this, we live in abundance today: Instead of having to eat or drink what is available, driven by hunger, we face a multitude of people Possibilities. We can decide whether enjoyment is more important to us, whether health effects are decisive and whether ethical considerations influence our selection.
That is why more and more people are consciously deciding to forego animal milk and instead use plant milk in coffee or muesli. Until 1990, plant-based milk alternatives such as soy milk or hazelnut milk were still banned in Germany - also to protect the local dairy industry. But a lot has happened since then. There are more and more types of plant milk on the market. They differ both in the ingredients, the ingredients and the taste.
Soy milk - the classic
It is probably the best-known plant milk: soy milk. It has been valued in Asia for over 2000 years. The basic ingredient is the soybean, which is rich in high-quality protein. Contrary to what is often feared, the soybeans that are processed into soy milk do not come from rainforest areas. They mostly come from European cultivation. European manufacturers also do without genetic engineering. This information can also be found on the labels.
Compared to cow's milk, soy milk provides a similar amount of protein, which is also particularly easy to use. Soy milk also provides vitamins such as folic acid and secondary plant substances such as saponins and flavonoids.
Soy milk is particularly popular as a vegan milk alternative in coffee. Just like cow's milk, it can be whipped into foam and also tastes pleasantly nutty-sweet. There is also soy cream on offer as an alternative to regular cream when cooking. It can even be whipped into whipped cream.
Oat milk or spelled milk
Cereal milk made from oats or spelled are younger milk alternatives. During their production, the cereal grains are mixed with water and pureed. The mixture then runs through a sieve - and the cereal milk is ready. In order to achieve a creamier consistency, manufacturers often add a little vegetable oil, sometimes also table salt. Oat and spelled milk naturally provide relatively few vitamins and minerals, as most of them remain in the solid, sieved grain pulp. Of course, this is not a bad thing if you also consume plenty of nutrient-rich foods.
Incidentally, you can also easily make oat or spelled milk yourself. In terms of taste, these vegan milk alternatives are strongly reminiscent of cereals. That is why oat or spelled milk are particularly suitable for mueslis or smoothies.
Rice milk - enjoy in small quantities
Like oat milk, rice milk is made from whole grains. Then the rice milk is fermented. Since rice milk is quite thin - it contains very little fat and protein - thickeners are often used.
As with other rice products, rice milk can also contain an increased concentration of arsenic. So you shouldn't consume too large amounts of it. However, this shouldn't be a problem with normal consumption.
Almond milk: a pleasure inside and out
Almond milk has a very long tradition. The drink was already enjoyed in the Middle Ages and was also used for skin care. Almond milk is particularly rich in vitamins and minerals. It only provides half as many calories as cow's milk or soy milk - but also hardly any protein.
Almond milk can be frothed and is therefore popular as a milk alternative in coffee. Almond milk also tastes very good in muesli, smoothies or golden milk.
Hemp milk - forgotten superfood
The hemp plant still has a negative image. But wrongly, because (useful) hemp is a real superfood. The seeds of the hemp plant are rich in minerals and valuable omega-3 fatty acids. These are also contained in the finished hemp milk and ensure that hemp milk keeps you full for a long time.
Unfortunately, the cultivation of hemp seeds in Europe is still relatively small, so that hemp milk is still quite expensive today. However, the hemp milk is definitely worth a try.
Conclusion: choose milk alternatives correctly and drink them in a varied way
The following applies to all milk alternatives: the less processed, the more recommendable the products are. Some manufacturers use additives in their drinks to get as close as possible to the taste of cow's milk. Therefore, pay attention to organic quality when choosing, because most additives (especially questionable ones) are prohibited here.
There is no such thing as the one healthiest vegetable milk. Ultimately, the respective recipe decides what goes into our glasses and bowls. In particular, make sure that no preservatives, colorings, sweeteners or flavors are used.
Incidentally, depending on your lifestyle and other diet (for example, with a vegan diet), it can make sense to choose plant-based milk that also contains calcium (from seaweed) or vitamin B12.
In the end, the following applies: no single food can provide all the important ingredients that are important for a healthy life. So try different varieties and manufacturers. In this way you can also find out which plant milk you like where - whether in coffee, in muesli or drunk straight.
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