Is Almond Milk Bad for You?

Almond milk is popular alternative plant-based milk known for its nutty taste and creamy texture. Because it doesn't contain any lactose or cholesterol, it is used by those who cannot tolerate lactose or who are trying to avoid animal-based milk products, such as vegans. Almond milk comes in many forms, such as unsweetened almond milk, sweetened almond milk, and forms such as vanilla, plain and chocolate-flavored. It is commercially made for ease of use but can be made by hand using almonds, water, and a blender. Almond milk is very popular and was found to be more popular than soy milk when the number of liters sold nearly tripled from 2011-2013. But is almond milk bad for you or good for you?

The answer is both yes and no! In most of the cases, it's good, but precautions should be taken when consuming it, otherwise it would be bad for you. 

Almond Milk Is Bad for You, If…

Almond milk is great; however, if you have certain problems or are in certain conditions, it may be bad for you. These include:

1.   You're Allergic to Tree Nuts

People who are allergic to tree nuts must avoid almond milk. If allergic, you will have symptoms such as hives with exposure to tree nuts, shortness of breath, swelling of the throat and possible coma. These symptoms occur rather quickly, within a couple of hours after exposure to almonds.

2.   You Have Chronic Migraine

Almonds also contain a great deal of tyrosine, which is an amino acid. Tyrosine can make migraine headaches worse, so if you suffer from migraines, stay away from tyrosine. This means staying away from almonds or almond milk, too. Tyrosine is a non-essential component of your diet, so you don't need to eat it if you have problems consuming it.

3.   You Have Inflammatory Problems

For the answer to "Is almond milk bad for you?" the answer is yes if you have inflammatory diseases. Certain types of almond milk are high in carrageenan, which is a thickener that comes from seaweed. It is what makes ice cream have the texture it does. Carrageen, however, makes those who have inflammatory bowel disease or other inflammatory diseases at higher risk. This texturizer increases inflammation, so those with inflammatory problems may want to consider drinking cow's milk instead of almond milk or to check to see if their almond milk contains carrageen. Not all brands do.

4.   You're Feeding Your Baby

Almond milk is low in protein, so if you have an infant, do not give them almond milk. Almond milk is perfectly good for those who are old enough to get protein from other sources, but it doesn't help if you have milk as your only source of nutrition. So for infants, avoid almond milk.

5.   You Want to Increase the Calcium or Protein Intake

So is almond milk bad for you? Almond milk is good for you in most cases but it doesn't contain the same amount of calcium and protein a you'll find in cow's milk. For those at risk for osteoporosis, it is better to drink cow's milk, which has more calcium in it. In addition, if you are sick with an illness or injury requiring protein, you'll want to drink cow's milk instead. Almond milk contains only 8 g of calcium per 250 ml, compared with 300 mg per 250 ml in cow's milk. As for protein, a cup of almond milk has only 1 gram of protein, whereas cow's milk contains 9 g of protein in each cup you drink.

If You're Free of the Conditions Above, Almond Milk Is Good to You!

To answer "Is almond milk bad for you", If you have not any conditions as mentioned above, it can be actually very beneficial.

1.   It's Full of Beneficial Nutrients

Almond milk contains a great deal of fiber along with selenium, vitamin E, zinc, iron, magnesium, tryptophan (a precursor to serotonin), phosphorus, potassium, calcium, manganese and some calcium (which is low). It also contains probiotics that have the potential to increase digestive health by improving the number of healthy bacteria in the intestinal tract. So you can drink the milk knowing that you are taking in plenty of good nutrients.

2.   It Helps Manage Your Weight

Almond milk is good for weight management. It contains far fewer calories per cup when compared to that in cow's milk. It even has fewer calories when compared to skim milk. As it turns out, one cup of almond milk has only about 60 calories in it, which is less than 90 calories in a cup of skim milk. If you choose to drink light almond milk, you will be consuming only 40 calories per cup. This is great news for weight loss enthusiasts.

3.   It Reduces the Risks of Certain Diseases

Almond milk can reduce the risk of certain diseases, including prostate cancer, heart disease and diabetes. It is high in unsaturated fats, while cow's milk contains mostly saturated animal fats. If you drink almond milk fortified with calcium, the extra calcium can reduce your risk of high blood pressure. Prostate cancer sufferers should drink almond milk because one study had showed that almond milk actually slows the growth of cells in the prostate that are cancerous. 

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