Vegans worldwide have never had it so good. We're now bombarded with so many m*lk choices, it's surprising we've not yet seen an avocado being squeezed to death and stuffed in a tetrapak or someone claiming acorns to be the next big thing in nut m*lk
Gone are the days when the only dairy alternative in you might find hidden in the free-from section was a solitary soy; when your choice of coffee outside the home was limited to an espresso or an Americano, (black of course), and when a sweet treat would mean a piece of fruit or stale tasting cracker type thing that was possibly once a piece of fruit.
Yet with so much variety, can come an infinite amount of confusion; which m*lk is the most sustainable, which is the healthiest, which is the most wallet friendly, which is the best in coffee etc etc. It's nuts, and the list seems almost as long as this current Covid situation.
Well, being the nice guys that we are here at M*lkman, we want to make your life just that little bit easier and throw you legume shaped life jacket to stop you drowning in a sea of milky info.
Here's a (relatively) easy breakdown of what, where, when and how in the m*lk world!
With almost 25% of the UK population opting to make the switch from dairy to plant-based m*lk we have seen a dramatic increase in the accessibility and variety of types of m*lk available.
There are three main types, each appealing in their own way, each with varying health properties: - The Beans: soy, pea, chickpea - The Cereals: oat, rice, spelt, hemp - The Nuts & Seeds: coconut, almond, pistachio, cashew, hazelnut, tiger nut
The list goes on…This nut influx is not exactly a surprise, studies show that approximately 65% of adults have difficulty digesting lactose (the sugar present in cow’s milk), and the average adult diet is becoming more varied and we've seen a huge rise in veganism in the past few years.
These changes can be founded on a variety of grounds; health, animal welfare issues, keeping up with the jones, who knows. Yet it seems that more people worldwide are becoming increasingly aware of the negative environmental implications of the dairy industry and want to see less farts floating up into the atmosphere
This is a trend that is having a large impact in younger age groups; In the UK, only 73% of people aged 16 to 24 now drink milk, compared to 92% of those over 45 years (Mintel 2019)
As time progresses it’s likely that consuming dairy will become less common still.
The dramatic impacts of dairy farming can be seen most vividly in the context of environmental degradation, as it possesses a much larger water, land and greenhouse gas footprint relative to other agricultural industries (particularly arable farming).
According to The United Nations, livestock for meat and dairy contribute approximately 15% of all greenhouse gases. Incredibly this is more than all transport (inc. air transport) combined.
Bovine digestion also produces large quantities of methane and nitrous oxide both of which contribute to extensive environmental warming.
Intensive farming also contributes to deforestation and biodiversity loss, as trees thousands of acres are cleared to provide grazing and crops for animal feed.
Animals need to consume large quantities of feed crops (more than a human consumer would need for m*lk alternatives); approximately one third of crops grown across the world are used to feed animals.
The production of both oat and coconut m*lks are by comparison, far less intensive, and provide a way more environmentally aware and sustainable alternative. In the past, one of the main reasons for not switching from dairy to plant-based alternatives was a concern that you wouldn't get the correct nutrients in sufficient amounts.
As with any way of eating, nutrients need to be balanced across a day’s meals but m*lk drinkers need not fret as the majority of the choices available to you will be fortified!
Here at M*lkman, we fortify both our oat and coconut m*lks with calcium (120mg per 100ml) which is the RDA and is plenty enough to keep those teeth and bones super strong.
Looking further at the health benefits of saying ces't la vie to dairy, it's worth noting that milk is one one the highest sources of saturated fat, which contributes to heart disease and type 2 diabetes. There are also concerns with the levels of animal-focussed antibiotics present in non-organic dairy products. These medications are not designed for human consumption and could have extended complications from their build-up in your system.
Plant-based m*lks are, thankfully, much healthier. For your insides, and, the planets outside.
Oat-so interesting health benefits of oat m*lk
Far from being just a deliciously creamy alternative to dairy, oat m*lk is a nutrient rich kick ass drink in it's own right
First off, fibre. Fibre can aid in weight regulation as you're going to feel fuller after eating it, which in turn means you're less likely to stuff your face with bad stuff between meals.
According to a 2015 controlled trial published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, increasing your daily fiber intake may lead to weight loss. Other studies indicate a strong link between low-fiber diets and a high body mass index (BMI).
Even though this nutrient doesn't directly influence your weight, it works in other ways. A high-fiber intake promotes satiety and improves appetite control, making it easier, in turn, to stick to your diet and downsize your portions. So, drinking oat milk between meals or whenever you're hungry may bring you closer to your weight-loss goals.
Oat m*lk also has, wait for it...ZERO cholesterol, yep, AND is relatively low in fat – qualities that make it a good friend for your old ticker and superbly beneficial for heart health compared to dairy. It also has more fibre than other types of m*lk, promoting good gut health (yay for probiotics) and is free of many of the allergens found in other types of milk.
Plus, and this is a biggy, it contains beta-glucans - a soluble fiber that may offer heart health benefits.
Beta-glucan is a viscous fiber which forms a gel in your digestive tract. This thick gel grabs cholesterol as it moves through your digestive system to prevent absorption, and then eliminates it from your body. Getting 3 grams of beta-glucan a day may help lower cholesterol levels by as much as 8 percent.
Oat m*lk also contains higher levels of protein and fiber which help lower cholesterol, promote regular bowel movements, hunger management, and also aid in muscle building.
Coco-nuggets of nutritional info
Coconut M*lk is thick, creamy and totally dreamy. But that aside, it's also highly nutritious and rich in fibre, vitamins C, E, B1, B3, B5 and B6 and minerals including iron, selenium, sodium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous
Something you've probably heard a thousand times from da nut naysayers is "yeah but coconut is full of saturated fat". And yes, it certainly is. But, the next time you hear that you can get all scientific on their arse and let them know that yes, they're right, BUT, the saturated fats found in coconut milk are mainly short and medium chain fatty acids, which are usually not stored by the body as fats. Instead, such short and medium chain fatty acids have been found to provide instant energy to the body. Then you can jump up energetically into the air, flick them the v's (for Vegan) of course, and shoot off at speed off laughing smugly.
Apart from these fatty acids, coconut milk contains many other essential nutrients, which can be attributed for several health benefits. Some of the most important benefits of coconut milk are explained below:
A major part of the fats found in coconut milk is lauric acid, which has been found to exhibit antibacterial, anti-fungal and antiviral properties. This fatty acid can boost the immune system and its disease fighting ability. Lauric acid can also be helpful in maintaining the elasticity of the blood vessels and in keeping them clean, which can lower the risk for conditions like, atherosclerosis and heart disease.
Coconut milk also contains several antioxidant compounds, which can provide protection against the harmful free radicals and their damaging effects on the body cells and tissues. It can also provide 22% of the recommended daily allowance of iron. With such a high level of iron, it can help to treat anemia caused by iron deficiency. Apart from these, coconut milk may help to relax the nerves and the muscles, control blood sugar level, lower blood pressure and reduce joint inflammation.
So next time you’re reaching for a bottle of creamy plant-based m*lk, it's worth noting how far we've come in just a few years and remembering that your choices have a direct benefit to both the environment AND your health.
For a full list of suppliers that will enable you to enable you to hop aboard the dairy-free glass bottomed b-oat with us, head to or suppliers page!