It is a fact, in recent times, the increase in the consumption of beverages (or "milks", as they were called before the decree prohibiting this definition) vegetable: according to Coldiretti, in fact, in 2015 the sales of vegetable drinks are increased by 27%.
But it will be true that vegetable drinks They are all the same and can all be used to replace cow's milk?
In reality this is not the case: each vegetable "milk" has its own peculiar characteristics and specific nutritional properties. It will be worth knowing them well, in order to choose the one that best suits our needs and insert it correctly in a balanced and varied diet.
There is therefore a Vegetable "milk" better than the others?
Vegetable milks ": which ones to choose?
Let's make an unpopular premise: except for newborns and infants, no type of milk, vegetable or animal, is - from a nutritional point of view - indispensable to the adult human being.
All the nutrients present in cow's milk and vegetable "milk" can in fact be obtained in adequate amounts from other foods (tofu, vegetables, legumes, nuts or proteins of animal origin for those who consume them). We drink milk by choice, by habit, by taste, because we like it.
Let's quickly review the main vegetable "milks" and let's find out which one to choose (if you need to choose):
> "Latte" soy: it is the most widespread and used. It has a protein content comparable to that of cow's milk, is cholesterol-free, and is quite cheap. With preference for the non-GMO organic variant, carefully not to exceed and with some warnings for infants, soy "milk" has an excellent chance of being the best for building a breakfast / snack / recipe balanced in macronutrients (proteins, carbohydrates, fats)
> "Latte" of rice: low in calories and very digestible, with an excellent flavor; it has a low allergenic power, it is suitable for celiacs. On the other hand, it contains very little protein and has a very high glycemic index. It is the best choice in case of celiac disease, but it should be included in a balanced meal especially with proteins and fibers
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> "Latte ” di oats: it is equivalent, from a nutritional point of view, to the rice drink, albeit with a lower glycemic index
> Almond milk: it is the only one, together with the coconut one, that we can define as milk without violating the law. It is the result of the village tradition. Rich in unsaturated fat and calcium, free from cholesterol and substances with hormone-like effects. It is a very nutritious milk, with very similar characteristics are the characteristics of the "milk" of walnuts and hazelnuts, which are however less common.
> Coconut milk: it is very popular in Southeast Asia, but in the West it is mostly known as an ingredient for desserts or other recipes. Rich in fiber, protein and short-chain saturated fatty acids (health benefits), it has a lot of calories but a high satiating power.
Which vegetable "milk" to choose In summary? There is no ranking of best or worst, as it depends on the use you want to make of it. Let's see some practical tips:
> For replace cow's milk, with equivalent (or superimposable) protein content we will use the Soy "milk" or coconut milk
> In recipes for celiacs and for allergic or intolerant to cow's milk: rice or coconut milk will do, but also those of almonds, walnuts or hazelnuts
> In case of hypoprotein diet for metabolic or kidney diseases, rice "milk" may be the best given its low protein intake (about 0.3 grams per 100 ml)
> They must always be used as part of a varied diet, perhaps by changing the type of "milk" and consuming them alternately
> They must be entered in a meal that has a balanced content of protein, fiber and fat, to avoid disturbing blood sugar spikes
> Beware of vegetable drinks enriched with sugars, cocoa, thickeners, flavors: it is better to choose those with a short list of ingredients and preferably provelienti from organic farming.
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