Health Benefits of Almond Milk for Seniors
Many health benefits are associated with almond milk, including its nutritional value. Making almond milk at home is simple and can be done by following a few simple steps. If you are a vegetarian or allergic to dairy lactose and cholesterol, almond milk is the best alternative to cow’s milk.
Today’s article on Living Maples Mag will talk about almond milk’s health benefits for seniors.
Besides being a delicious drink, almond milk has many uses in cooking. You can use it to make purees, porridge, smoothies, ice cream, soups, sauces, salads and desserts. You can also add almond milk to your cornflakes, tea or coffee.
What is Almond Milk?
Making almond milk involves mixing almonds with water and obtaining the extract from this mixture. This method of preparing almond milk is the most widely used and best way to make it. Of course, some people also make this popular drink by adding water to almond butter. Almond milk has a pleasant taste and a creamy colour like cow’s milk. For this reason, people who are vegetarians or are allergic to some of the ingredients in dairy milk prefer almond milk.
Flavoured almond milk is sold in many supermarkets and chain stores. But, it is possible to make this nutritious drink at home. If you decide to buy ready-made almond milk, it is better to choose those that do not contain sugar. Some brands of almond milk on the market are enriched with various vitamins, minerals and proteins. If you are one of those people who are allergic to dairy products, it is better to choose calcium-fortified almond milk for drinking.
How to Make Homemade Almond Milk?
The most famous and widely used type of nut milk is almond milk. Before we talk about the myriad health benefits of almond milk, let’s guide you on how to make homemade almond milk. You need to make homemade almond milk in a blender, some water and a bowl of peeled almonds. Follow the instruction below to prepare your almond milk:
- Soak a cup or about 200 grams of almond kernels in a water bowl for 8 to 12 hours.
- After soaking, easily peel off the brown skin on the almond kernels.
- Put the almond kernels in a blender and add 4 cups of water. Wait a few minutes, then mix the water and almond kernels.
- Smooth the resulting mixture and separate the milk from the mixture using a cleaning cloth. Pour the remaining almond paste into a bowl to dry, grind it and use it as almond flour.
- Now your almond milk is ready. It is better to use a clean glass container with a lid to keep the almond milk. You can keep your almond milk in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days.
Keep in mind that almond milk is made from two separate compounds, and it is perfectly normal for their ingredients to settle. Therefore, it is better to shake their main container well before each use.
- Almonds: 8-12 hours
- Hazelnuts: 8 hours
- Peanuts: 8 hours
- Walnut: 4 hours
- Pistachios: No need
Benefits of Almond Milk for Seniors
Almond milk was easy to make. Now let’s talk about the fantastic properties of this drink for seniors.
Almond Milk Is very Nutritious
Although the number of nutrients in almond milk does not equal cow’s milk, it is as rich as cow’s milk. Of course, almond milk fortified with vitamin D, calcium, and protein is very close to cow’s milk in terms of nutritional content. Almond milk is rich in several vitamins for the elderly, especially vitamin E and large amounts of minerals.
Some minerals in almond milk are not present in cow’s milk. One of these substances is phytic acid. It has antibacterial properties but reduces the absorption of iron, zinc and magnesium in the human body.
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Almond Milk Is Low in Calories
Almond kernels alone are 50% fat and high in calories, but almond milk is low in calories. This way, you can consume a large amount of this drink daily without worrying about gaining weight. The nutrients in almond milk are much higher than its calories. If you buy almond milk, it is better to know that their fat is as low as cow’s milk and about 1% because the manufacturers of almond milk dilute it with water.
Each cup of almond milk contains 39 calories. That’s about half the calories in a skimmed cow’s milk cup. Note that not all almond milk is the same in terms of calories. Depending on the number of pure almonds and sugar used, some brands may contain more calories.
Almond Milk Is Not Raising Blood Sugar
Sugar-free almond milk is a low-carb drink. Each cup of this drink contains only 0.6% (1.5 g) of carbohydrates. Almond milk has fewer carbohydrates than cow’s milk, including 5% (12 grams) of carbohydrates per cup. Almond milk has more fat and protein than carbohydrates, so it does not raise blood sugar and is suitable for seniors on a low-carb or diabetic diet.
However, if you plan to buy ready-made almond milk and its low carbohydrate content is crucial, pay attention to the menu label on the almond milk packaging before buying. Of course, you can also make homemade almond milk at home using the recipe.
Anti-Allergic Qualities of Almond Milk
Almond milk is an entirely herbal product suitable for vegetarians or seniors allergic to dairy products. Also, lactose-intolerant people and those who cannot use cow’s milk can enjoy drinking almond milk.
Lactose is a substance that causes excessive gas, intestinal inflammation, diarrhea and discomfort in the large intestine if your body cannot digest it. One of the good things about almond milk is that it lacks lactose. So if you are lactose-intolerant, you can easily substitute and replace dairy milk using the homemade almond milk recipe.
Strengthening Bones with Enriched Almond Milk
Dairy products are a rich source of calcium and are very low in calcium compared to almonds. Almond milk producers usually fortify it with calcium to bring it closer to cow’s milk. One cup of fortified almond milk can contain 45 to 50 percent of a senior’s daily calcium requirement. In contrast, the amount of calcium in a cup of cow’s milk can be between 28 and 31% of the daily requirement.
Calcium is beneficial and necessary for senior muscle building and strengthening bones, and regular consumption reduces osteoporosis risk. Seniors with conditions such as osteoporosis should eat calcium and vitamin-E-rich foods regularly. Almond milk, which is high in vitamin E, is an excellent drink to include in your diet if it is fortified with calcium.
Reducing the Risk of Heart Disease
Scientific studies show that regular consumption of nuts effectively reduces heart disease risk because they contain large amounts of vitamin E and healthy fats. According to these studies, almond has many health benefits among the fatty kernels, and almond milk also contains 1% of saturated fat and 90% of unsaturated fat. The primary fatty acid in almond oil is oleic acid, associated with beneficial changes in blood lipids.
In a study on seniors, researchers found that eating 66 grams of almonds or almond milk daily for six weeks reduced bad cholesterol (LDL) by 6%, triglycerides by 14%, and increased good cholesterol (HDL) by 6%. . All of these effects on blood lipids reduce the risk of heart disease. Although about 50% of the calories in almond milk come from its fat, this very low-fat drink does not significantly affect blood lipids.
Almond milk is a rich source of vitamin E, and according to scientists, vitamin E is perfect for health and protects the body’s beneficial fats from oxidation. Vitamin E also reduces the risk of heart disease by lowering oxidized harmful cholesterol in the body.
Almond Milk Is High in Vitamin D
Vitamin D deficiency causes brittle bones, weak muscles, and constant tiredness. Few foods are a good source of vitamin D. This is why vitamin D fortification of dairy products, especially, is one of the most important public health strategies.
Almond milk on the market is usually fortified with vitamin D. It is interesting to know that one cup of fortified almond milk contains 101 units (2.4 micrograms) of vitamin D. This amount of vitamin D is equal to 25% of the daily requirement. This amount is similar to the amount contained in a fortified cow’s milk cup. Therefore, almond milk is a valuable source whose regular consumption can compensate for the lack of vitamin D in the body.
Almond milk has several health benefits and is a good alternative for the elderly allergic to cow’s milk. Therefore, seniors can make drinking this delicious milk one of their daily habits and improve their health. Let us know if you are a long-time user and have seen the benefits mentioned above or plan to try almond milk for the first time, in the near future. It’s important to note that almond milk should not be relied upon as a sole source of nutrition. Seniors should aim for a balanced diet that includes a variety of foods to ensure they get all the nutrients they need. As with any dietary change, it’s a good idea to consult a healthcare professional or registered dietitian before making significant changes.