If you’re the kind that likes some milk in your tea and coffee, it won’t be long before you realize that this little addition can escalate your calorie count quickly; especially if you’re the kind to load up on more than two beverages a day. So, between skimmed, almond and soy, which one should you bring home from the dairy aisle if you’re trying to watch your waistline? Let’s find out.
- Skimmed Milk
(80 calories, 0g fat per 8oz)
Skimmed milk is jam-packed with several vital nutrients including calcium, vitamin A, phosphorus, vitamin D, vitamin B12, and the antioxidant, selenium. And if research is to be believed, people claim to feel fuller and eat fewer calories after drinking skimmed milk than after a fruit-based drink.
- Almond Milk
(70 calories, 2.5g fat per 8oz)
Almond milk has a creamy consistency, similar to soy milk, and a slightly nutty taste, making it the perfect addition to your pre-workout/post-workout smoothies. It is lactose-free and full of heart-healthy flavonoids that can help lower cholesterol. An 8oz serving of this milk provides up to half of your daily requirement of vitamin E—the nutrient that promotes healthy skin. However, if you’re on a high-protein diet, almond milk has only 1-2g protein per cup, compared to 8g in cow milk, so you’re not going to benefit much from this as far as strength training is concerned.
- Soy Milk
(105 calories, 4g fat per 8oz)
Perhaps the first non-dairy beverage, soy milk contains more hunger-fighting protein than all other non-dairy milks—about 7g per cup. However, soy milk does have its disadvantages. Non-digestible carbohydrates (oligosaccharides) present in soy milk may cause stomach pain, or even gas in some people. If that’s not all, as with other non-dairy milks, you will have to purchase unsweetened brands that are fortified with calcium and vitamin D to keep your bones strong.
Here’s a quick lesson that teaches you that it’s never just about the calories. If you’re lactose intolerant, soy milk may be your best resolve; skimmed milk is a good bet for those who are on a calorie restrictive diet; use almond milk to supercharge your workouts; and, go full-fat if you’re on a gruelling weight lifting and strength training regime.