Though the attention towards plant-based milk is increasing, there is a natural urge to compare them against dairy-based products. One such most questioned choice is Almond milk versus kefir.
Almond milk is the most loved and convenient alternative to dairy-based milk Yet, would it be the right choice when compared with the goodness of a probiotic, protein-based dairy drink- Kefir? Let’s find out.
A Rundown Of Almond Milk Versus Kefir For Your Understanding
Let us begin by analyzing everything you must know about almond milk vs kefir for a robust lifestyle –
Almonds & water
Milk & kefir grains
Nutty & sweet
Morning or night
Morning or Noon
|ORAL HEALTH OUTCOME
|TUMMY HEALTH OUTCOME
|BODILY COOLING EFFECT
|BODILY HYDRATION EFFECT
Honey, Jaggery & flavors
*Source: USDA; Quantity defined is 1 cup
The Story Of Almond Milk Versus Kefir- What Are They?
Almond milk has been around for centuries and is a part of many Asian cuisines. They are native to the Middle East and were brought to Southern Europe and more recently to California in the 19th century.
Almond milk is made by blending soaked almonds in water and can be made easily at home just like other plant milks using simple ingredients and equipment.
Kefir has its origins in the Caucasus mountain ranges of Russia. Kefir grains- The yellow jelly-like culture made of yeast and bacteria is the main ingredient in kefir.
Kefir grains are mixed with cow’s milk and are left to ferment naturally in a dark cool place for a day. Post-fermentation it is strained to obtain kefir.
Almond Milk Or Kefir: A Delight To Drink?
Almond milk has a creamy silky texture to it. It tastes sweet and nutty like almonds. Homemade almond milk is naturally unsweetened and is great to try in different forms like smoothies and even coffee.
However, it is good to remember that almond milk is slightly watery and thin than regular milk so it can be used accordingly.
Kefir is known for its sour taste due to the fermentation process. It is a cross between yogurt and milk in texture.
The fermented kefir has more fizz due to the carbon dioxide present in it and is fondly called the “Champagne of milks”.
Difference in Recommended Intake of Almond Milk and Kefir
A cup is ideal for almond milk. It is a rich source of vitamins and minerals that nourish your body. Keeping it to 1 cup a day helps you to load on these nutrients that meet your daily requirements.
For kefir too, one cup is suggested per day. As it is a probiotic drink it works great for the human body’s nutrient needs.
How Does Kefir & Almond Milk Measure Up Against Other Popular Beverages?
Almond Milk Or Kefir, for the Calorie Conscious?
Calories measure the energy that helps our body to keep going with our everyday life. While too many calories, defined as adequate calories are essential to carry out our daily life.
Almond milk with its lower level of calories is a friend for fitness. Kefir on the contrary, has a relatively higher calorie count. If consuming fewer calories is your goal then opt for almond milk.
Comparing the Fat Content In Almond Milk Vs Kefir
One of the prominent reasons for almond milk’s wide popularity is because it’s low in fat. Also, this almond fat is good as it aids in maintaining your heart health by reducing blood pressure and improving blood flow. It is a wonderful option for all age groups.
Kefir is high in fat content and may not help much if reducing the amount of fat consumption is your goal. However, Kefir can be made low fat by making it using low-fat milk.
Almond Milk or Kefir, The Better Source Of Protein
Our body is made up of cells that help the body to function. These cells need protein to help them perform better. Almond milk being plant-based milk does not provide sufficient protein.
Kefir, on the other hand, is a great source of protein. Consuming kefir regularly will take care of meeting the everyday protein requirements of the human body.
Calcium Competence Between Almond Milk And Kefir
Calcium plays a crucial role in keeping our bones strong and maintaining bone density. With bone density loss becoming a common issue in old age people and even in adults, it is very important to ensure sufficient intake of the mineral.
Homemade almond milk is naturally low in calcium but the market version is generally fortified which means they are as good as dairy milk for fulfilling your calcium requirements.
Kefir being dairy-based milk is an excellent source of calcium. So based on your body’s calcium requirements, almond milk or kefir can be chosen.
Almond Milk Vs Kefir: Right Time To Consume for Wholesome Benefits
Almonds are great both in the morning and night. For a great start, consume it in the morning as the fiber-rich drink energizes and keeps you full for a long time so you can focus on your work without feeling hungry.
Consume almond milk for a good night’s sleep as they have sleep-inducing hormones that soothe and relax.
Kefir is great to consume in the daytime, especially at noon or post-lunch. It works great by replenishing the body, works on gut health and makes you feel relaxed.
Almond Milk Or Kefir- Better Friend to Our Ecosystem?
Almond milk is definitely an eco-friendly option yet it is known for its excessive consumption of water for growth. In comparison to other plant-based milk, almond milk consumes more water which causes an environmental threat. Moreover, excess consumption of almonds has led to overuse of wetlands which is dangerous to the ecosystem.
Kefir is an animal source milk. It is made from cow’s milk. Due to excess consumption of milk, the grazing lands for cows have expanded. This has led to the cutting of trees, soil damage and an increase in carbon gas emissions making kefir a non-eco-friendly option.
Which Is An Ally Of Vegans – Almond Milk or Kefir?
Almond milk being a source of plant-based milk is an excellent vegan-friendly option. It is easily available everywhere and works great as a dairy alternative.
Kefir is made from an animal source and is not a vegan-friendly drink. However, the kefir grains used in making different types of kefir.
By using kefir grains to make plant-based kefirs, you will not miss out on the good bacteria. It is however improtant to remember that the texture and nutrition values will differ when kefir is used in plant-based milks.
Can Almond Milk and Kefir Help In Oral Health?
Apart from being a good source of calcium, almond milk is also rich in phosphorus which helps in strengthening the bones and keeping gums healthy.
The calcium in kefir keeps the teeth strong and the probiotics or good bacteria in kefir helps in reducing inflammation in the gums. Thus both have a positive impact on oral health.
Almond Milk or Kefir: The Super Food For Tummy
Almond milk is an excellent source of antioxidants and vitamin E which is very beneficial in keeping the intestinal cells healthy and reducing inflammation. It is fibre rich which helps in the easy processing of food.
This in turn in the long run contributes to a healthy tummy. Almond milk is also a non-lactose food making it an alternative for lactose-intolerant people.
The presence of good bacteria or probiotics in kefir makes it a superfood for the tummy.
Kefir helps in digestion, gut functioning, keeping the bad bacteria away, and preventing falling sick.
What’s A better Natural Cooler- Almond Milk or Kefir?
Soaked almonds are naturally cool foods that are usually consumed in the summers to reduce body heat. Almond milk being a water-rich beverage cools down the temperature and balances the body heat.
Kefir is a natural coolant and is traditionally consumed in the summers to keep the body cool and replenished.
Better Choice For Hydration- Almond Milk Or Kefir?
Almond milk is rich in potassium which is an electrolyte that helps in hydrating the body. Almond milk being mostly water naturally has a positive impact on the water levels in the body.
Apart from this, the vitamin E in almond milk is great to keep your skin hydrated and healthy.
Kefir is a combination of water solids and electrolytes like magnesium and potassium that helps in the hydration of the body.
Comparing The Best Ways Of Consuming Almond Milk Vs Kefir For A Delicious Experience
From fruit smoothies, pouring over cereals to simply consuming it with a dash of jaggery or honey the options of using almond milk are many. Include it in the morning coffee or take it at bedtime as such to enjoy its full benefits.
Kefir favors the savory side more. Consuming a cup of kefir with spices like pepper, and cumin topped with fresh herbs like coriander and mint refreshes you right away and leaves you with a good aftertaste.
When it comes to kefir vs almond milk nutrition, as a practicing nutritionist I would suggest taking a note of your body’s needs and go with the one that benefits your nutrient requirements.
With this, we have come to the end of the blog. I hope it helped you to know everything about these much sought-after milks so next time when you see them in a supermarket aisle you know what to pick!