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Cow vs Soy

Soy milk is often substituted for cow’s milk by people who can’t – for whatever reason – have dairy products, or who want to cut down on their overall milk consumption. Is it really better? Worse? Same? Other?

While soya beans – in the form of tofu, tempeh, miso, or edamame – have many healthy properties, the ‘milk’ that’s produced from soy beans is not a health food per se.

You have to remember that soy milk is a highly processed product, and too much of any processed food is in fact very unhealthy. What’s more, many of the more popular brands include additives, flavourings and sugar in their soy milk formulas, all of which are absolutely no good for you.

However, the brands with less additives (found in health food shops or the health food section of the supermarket) are perfectly fine to include in a balanced diet – as a dash of soy in your coffee or tea, sometimes poured over cereal, or incorporated into cooking.

As for cow’s milk, well, dairy products are not necessarily bad for you, but they are not necessarily good for you either – particularly when you don’t have enough variety in the rest of your diet. Cow’s milk forms a large part of many people’s diets – often without them being aware of it. With cereal, in teas and coffees, as yoghurt and ice-cream, in baked foods and sauces… it’s everywhere!

For a lot of people, even a slight reduction of the amount of dairy in their diet will make a big difference to their overall health – particularly if they struggle with weight problems, allergies, or digestive upsets. It’s worth considering…

Also don’t forget the wide variety of other milk alternatives on the market – including almond milk, rice milk, quinoa milk, oat milk, etc. There are a huge variety of options for you to try – no need to feel limited to just ‘one or the other’.

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About Kathleen Murphy

Australian naturopath and freelance writer, based in Sydney. I love working with people from all walks of life, helping them institute changes that can become life-long health habits. I can be found at Uclinic | 421 Bourke Street, Surry Hills | Ph: 02 9332 0400 |

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