5 Home-made (& Dairy-free) Milk Alternatives

Flickr / Vivianna_love

Flickr / Vivianna_love

By: Amanda Froelich,
True Activist.

With Harvard’s confirming study on the detrimental effects of milk consumption , startled families are torn between habit and health-minded effort as to what to consume in its place. Creamy, filling, and a staple to many, its acidifying, hard-to-digest effects have long been overlooked for too long by dairy industry-backed regulators. There are many reasons to once and for all put down your glass of Moo juice.

First, cow’s milk is essential…for baby calves meant to increase substantially in weight during their first years of life. The molecules vary dramatically from human breast milk and because individuals lose their ability to produce lactase (the enzyme that digests lactose) at a young age, most every individual is lactose intolerant. This can cause flatulence, acne, and fatigue among many other symptoms.

Second, the claim that milk is essential for calcium is false. The large consumption of fatty and pasteurized milk is highly acidic in the body and has been shown  to actually leach calcium from the bones in order to buffer to toxicity/acidosis in the bloodstream. Better sources of utilizable calcium include: certain nuts and seeds (sesame, chia, almonds, etc..), green leafy vegetables, beans and legumes, brussel sprouts, broccoli, and even certain fruits like oranges and raisins. Alkaline forming foods that are high in anti-oxidants, minerals, and nutrients are much more beneficial for the human system.

Finally, ethically the dairy industry is not sustainable. World Watch Institute declared that 51% or more of greenhouse gas emissions are caused by animal agriculture, therefore the meat and dairy industries play a large role. The unnatural and inhumane way cows are treated for their milk is also morally corrupt.  Adult cows are artificially inseminated to remain pregnant, birth calves which are taken away immediately, and create a never-ending flow of milk; the liquid which is pumped out through machines. On poor supply of feed and routinely shot with hormones and antibiotics, they’re creating low-grade milk for the consumption of any beings on the planet. For a food that’s not beneficial for humans in the first place, the mistreatment of livestock needs to change. (And for fairness, there are humane farmers who treat their livestock properly, but large industries are the main focus on ethics). The effect on these peaceful creatures is reflected by their span of life. Continually pregnant, feeding, and living in poor conditions, a factory cow will only survive 4-5 years before being butchered compared to its potential life span of 25 years.

Luckily, you can be the change and offset all this negativity by choosing to consume these affordable, easy-to-make, and healing milk replacements. All you need is a blender, a nut milk bag (for only some of the variations), the ingredients, and a passion to adopt healthier, life-promoting fare.

1. Hemp Milk:

Hemp seeds are a super food! Rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, containing all amino acids (building blocks of protein), and also being rich in Calcium, Vitamin A, E, B 12, Vitamin D, Folic Acid and more nutrients, they’re a perfect substitution for creaitng creamy milk.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Raw Shelled Hemp Seeds
  • 3 Cups Filtered Water
  • 4 Dates
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract (Optional)
  • Dash of Sea Salt (Optional)

Directions:

1) In a high-speed blender, combine all ingredients until creamy. Will store 2-3 days in an air-tight mason jar.

2. Cashew Milk:

Cashews are rich in Magnesium, Phosphorous, Zinc, and Iron. Enjoy your creamy, dreamy bliss with this recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Raw Cashews
  • 4 Cups Water
  • 1-2 Tbsp Agave, Raw Honey, or 2 (pitted) Dates
  • 2 tsp Vanilla extract (optional)
  • Dash of Sea Salt (optional)

Directions:

1) In a high-speed blender, combine all ingredients until smooth and creamy.

2) Using a nut milk bag, strain contents of blender into a large bowl, saving the pulp for other raw creations (like cookies and crackers).

3) Store the milk in an air-tight mason jar or use right away!

3. Sunflower Milk:

Who would of thought these seeds rich in Vitamin E, Selenium, Magnesium, and valuable anti-oxidants would be perfect for creating a milk alternative? Gather in the goodness with this option:

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Sunflower Seeds
  • 3 Cups Filtered Water
  • 1 Tbsp Raw Honey, Agave or 1 Date
  • 1 tsp Vanilla (Optional)
  • Dash of Sea Salt (Optional)

Directions:

1) In a high-speed blender, blend all ingredients on high until smooth and creamy.

2) Strain using a nut milk bag, saving the pulp for future creations. Store leftover milk in an air-tight mason jar for no longer than 4 days.

4. Almond Milk:

You can buy alternative milks in stores, but why not easily make your own for less cost?  Almonds are amazingly rich in Calcium, Vitamin E, anti-oxidants, and other life promoting nutrients that will help make your body happy.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Raw Almonds
  • 3 Cups Purified Water
  • 2 Dates
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract (Optional)
  • Dash of Sea Salt (Optional)

Directions:

1) In a high speed blender, combine all ingredients until smooth and creamy.

2) Use a nut milk bag and strain, saving the pulp for other creations. Save left over almond ‘milk’ in air-tight mason jars for 3-4 days.

5. Pumpkin Seed Milk:

Boost your health with pumpkin seeds, a nutrient dense food rich in Magnesium, Phosphorous, Zinc, Vitamin K and other nutrients that lower cholesterol, improve prostate function, and overall enhance the immune system of the human body. They also make a tasty milk!

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Raw Pumpkin Seeds
  • 2 1/2 – 3 Cups Purified Water
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract (Optional)
  • 2-3 Dates
  • Dash of Sea Salt (Optional)

Directions:

1) In a high-speed blender, blend all ingredients on high until creamy.

2) Using a nut milk bag, strain blender contents into a large container, saving pulp for future creations. Store excess pumpkin seed milk in an air-tight container or mason jar for 3-4 days.

Some Notes:

  1. If you are to make your own nut/seed milks at home, it is optimal to soak your seeds ahead of time. This allows the tannic acid (enzyme inhibitor which can make it hard to digest nuts) to be removed and also jump starts the germinating process – making these powerhouses live foods. You can soak overnight, rinse in the morning, and use for breakfast. If you choose to soak them longer and sprout your nuts and seeds, rinse morning and night and be sure to use before 3-4 days. Don’t forget – you can alter the creaminess by how much water you use to make your ‘milks’.
  2. There are dairy-free milk alternatives in the store, but for much less you can create alternatives in your home. Taking control of your health in this manner also ensures you know where your food is coming from and that there are no preservatives or poorly sourced foods in your diet.

Create longevity, beauty, and optimal health with simple variations to your diet, such as improving the milk staple you and your family consume. Intaking nourishing fare will support a better metabolism, clearer mind, balanced weight, and most importantly, a happier you!

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