Dairy Free Alternative Milk Comparison: What's Best for You?

Are you ready to ditch the dairy? If you’re on the fence about switching from regular milk to non-dairy alternatives, we’re here to help with all the facts and benefits you need to know. There are many reasons as to why you may consider making the switch such as lactose allergies, sensitivities or a health condition. Luckily, the market of alternative, non-dairy milk has grown rapidly over the last several years, leaving us with many options to choose from depending on our personal preferences and taste buds.

Compare and contrast four alternative milks: cashew, soy, almond and oat. As you use the tool, you can view the nutritional information for each milk in terms of calories, protein, carbs and fat. Each value is based per cup of each non-dairy milk choice. Now that you have an idea of how each milk stacks up, let’s dive deeper into the health benefits of these alternative milks.

The Health Benefits of Alternative & Non-Dairy Milk

Oat Milk

Cashew Milk 

Soy Milk 

Almond Milk 

The Best Alternative & Non-Dairy Milks For Health Conditions

Now that we’ve covered several benefits of oat, cashew, soy and almond milk - let’s talk about the best alternative milks for various health conditions.

The Best Milks for high cholesterol are ones that are low in fat. These include: 

  • Soy milk which contains no cholesterol and is low in saturated fat. It also has 7 grams of protein per serving. According to the National Institutes of Health, 25g per day of soy protein could reduce your risk of heart disease.
  • Almond Milk which also contains no cholesterol or saturated fat. They are heart healthy and low in calories with about 40 calories per cup. It also contains polyunsaturated fatty acids which are proven to lower LDL cholesterol and reduce inflammation. Make sure to avoid any almond milk that contains added sugar. 
  • Oat milk contains beta-glucans,  a soluble fiber that has heart health benefits. Once inside the heart, beta-glucans bind to cholesterol and reduce its absorption.

If you have diabetes, you need to pay attention to the saturated fats, carbohydrates and sugar in the milk you choose. Here are the best milk options for Diabetes:

  • Almond Milk that is unsweetened is a great choice for those with Diabetes. It is low in calories, has 2 grams of carbs and zero saturated fat.
  • Soy Milk that is unsweetened is another option as it’s high in calcium, packed with B12 and only has 4 grams of carbs per cup. 

If you have acid reflux, it can be difficult to determine which foods and drinks your body is sensitive to. According to research, here are the best plant based milks for acid reflux:

  • Almond Milk is great for Acid Reflux because of its alkaline composition. This helps with lowering and neutralizing the acid in your stomach, which relieves your reflux. 
  • Soy milk is lower in fat than normal milk, which is helpful for people with GERD. 
  • Any plant-based milk should help reduce Acid Reflux
  • If you have GERD, try to avoid any non-dairy milks that may contain carrageenan as it could contribute to your digestive issues. 

Do you often deal with skin breakouts and issues? Dairy can often be the cause of skin problems. To get your skin back on track, here are the best alternative milks for acne:

  • Coconut Milk is a great option for those who suffer from acne. It is anti-inflammatory, contains healthy fats, is gut friendly and has magnesium and potassium.
  • Almond Milk, if unsweetened, is also a good alternative because it contains antioxidants, is anti-inflammatory and made up of healthy fats. If you have a tree nut sensitivity, avoid almond milk as it may increase your acne issues. 
  • Cashew Milk can also be consumed because it is anti-inflammatory, has healthy fats and contains low amounts of carbs. 

If you experience bloating after drinking dairy, you most likely are sensitive or intolerant to lactose or milk. To avoid the uncomfortable feelings of bloating, here are the best non-dairy milks you should try:

  • Oat Milk is a great option because it doesn’t contain carrageenan which is often found in almond or coconut milk as an emulsifier. To keep your gut in check, find oat milk with the cleanest ingredients and avoid any brands that are synthetic or processed. 

Constipation is an uncomfortable problem for many individuals. If you’re sensitive to lactose or milk, drinking dairy may increase your constipation. To reduce these symptoms, try a non-dairy option instead: 

  • Oat Milk is a great choice for those who suffer from constipation. This is because it contains high levels of fiber which relieve constipation, soothe irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and even may lower the chance of getting colorectal cancer. By reducing constipation, the fiber in oat milk could potentially prevent hemorrhoids and hernias. 

Lastly, if your reason for ditching dairy is due to a lactose intolerance then plant based, non-dairy milks are your only option. Here are the best milks to substitute if you have lactose intolerance:

  • Soy Milk: Made from soybeans, it has a creamy taste and has a similar nutritional composition to that of cow’s milk.
  • Almond milk: Low in calories, nutty in flavor. Always choose an unsweetened version to avoid added sugars.
  • Coconut Milk: Milk-like consistency, sweet taste. The MCTs (medium-chain triglycerides) in coconut milk may help with weight loss and cholesterol levels. 
  • Oat Milk: High in protein and fiber, oat milk contains beta-glucan which can help lower cholesterol and blood sugar levels. 
  • Cashew Milk: Low in calories, carbohydrates and sugar - it is rich and creamy with a nutty flavor. 

As you can see, oat milk, almond milk and other non-dairy, alternative milk options such as cashew and soy have many health benefits. Additionally, they each play a role in fighting certain diseases and decreasing health issues. 

Ready to test out our dairy-free Oat Milk made with only 4 ingredients?