Plant-based alternatives to cow's milk have been popular for a while with many benefits for everyone, whether vegan, lactose intolerant, or have a specific allergy. Choices include versions of nut, seed, and legume-based milk containing varying amounts of nutrients, protein, and fiber. Most are low in calories, but be cautious of added sugars and salt.
There are many choices of alternative milks, below is some information on the most popular:
Arguably the first milk substitute (and the most nutritionally similar to dairy milk). Unsweetened soy milk has about 80 calories per cup with protein, antioxidants, and fiber.
Ayurvedic Qualities: Sweet, cold, and heavy. Nutritive, uterine tonic, alkalizing, and sattvic. Balances Vata and Pitta and increases Kapha.
Coconut milk is made from water and coconut cream. It is higher in fat (saturated) and lower in carbohydrates than nut- or grain-based milk.
Ayurvedic Qualities: Sweet, Cold, Heavy, and oily. Nutritive, refrigerant, alkalizing, grounding, and a brain tonic. Balances Vata and Pitta, and increases Kapha.
Very trendy these days and loved in coffee drinks because it is very creamy and formable. It is higher in calories and fiber, contains gluten, and has lower protein.
Ayurvedic Qualities: Sweet, warm, gooey, and heavy. Nutritive, demulcent, nervine, sedative, and grounding. Balances Vata and Pitta and increases Kapha.
Mostly made from almonds and water, plus other emulsifiers and fortifying nutrients.
Ayurvedic Qualities: Sweet, cold, and heavy. Nutritive, livotonic, demulcent, alkalizing, builds bones and promotes vitality. Pacifies Vata and Pitta, and increase Kapha.
Made by soaking and blending with water. It is highly nutritive with zinc, copper, and magnesium.
Ayurvedic Qualities: Sweet, cold, dry, heavy. Nutritive, sattvic, and immune builder. Balances Vata and Pitta and increase Kapha.
Most flax milk contains a little more than meets the eye made with flax seeds and oil and pea protein. Its natural alpha-linolenic acid supports immunity and is linked to reducing the risk of heart disease.
Ayurvedic Qualities: Warm, gooey, and oily with omega-3, fiber, and protein. Demulcent, laxative, and nutritive. Balances Vata and Pitta and increase Kapha.
Rice milk is made by blending rice with water, and because of low flavor, sugar is sometimes added.
Ayurvedic Qualities: Sweet, cold, high carbohydrates. Balances Vata and Pitta, and increases Kapha.