Is Oat Milk Better For You Than Almond Milk The Answer Might Surprise You
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People trying to improve their health by cutting cow milk have a couple of great options to choose from in the non-dairy aisle, like soy milk, goats milk, and even potato milk . But when it comes to the difference between two favoritesoat milk vs. almond milkis one actually better for you over the other?
Oat milk and almond milk can be great alternatives to dairy milk, according to Bill Rawls, M.D., licensed family physician and author The Cellular Wellness Solution, but neither version are milk in the traditional sense of the word. Oat milk, of course, comes from a grain and almond milk from a nut. They are made by blending oats or almonds with water and then straining out the solid components.
Oat milk may be higher in protein than almond milk, but Dr. Rawls points out that its also higher in carbohydrates. Neither oat milk almond milk have quite the same mouth feel and taste as regular cows milk, but thats not as much a disadvantage as something to get used to, he says. Oat milk has a starchy taste. Almond milk is thinner than regular cows milk and has a distinct almond flavor.
We talked to two experts to find out everything you need to know about the two popular dairy substitutes.
How To Find Gluten Free Oat Milk
Gluten is most commonly connected with wheat and wheat-containing foods, which are widely available in our diet. Search for a gluten-free label or a verified gluten-free label on oat milk you buy at the supermarket to ensure its gluten-free.
You also can figure out what type of oats are used by looking at the ingredients of oat milk products. This item is appropriate for your gluten-free diets if the components list gluten-free oats or certified gluten-free oats.
If you eat a gluten-free diet and tiny levels of gluten have no effect on your digestion or body, you might be able to drink oat milk that isnt labeled gluten-free. The same is true for gluten-free oats.
Who Should Drink Oat Milk
Oat milk is an excellent option for those who want to move away from dairy milk because of lactose intolerance or a preference for a vegan diet. Because oats are one of the least allergenic foods, its also safe if you have soy, milk protein, wheat, or nut allergies.
Children and babies can also drink oat milk. Its easy to digest, and as with adults, its a safe choice for kids with dairy, nut, or soy allergies. Because oat milk is lower in protein and some vitamins and minerals than dairy or soy milk, make sure you talk to your childs doctor about using oat milk.
If you strictly follow a paleo or Whole30 diet, sorry, you wont be able to enjoy oat milk because its made from grain. And for those on a keto diet, it may provide too many carbs, but an oat milk latte might work as an occasional treat.
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Other Potential Oat Downsides
A very small number of people with celiac disease may still be unable to tolerate pure, uncontaminated oats.
Pure oats contain avenin, a protein that may cause problems because it has a similar amino-acid structure as gluten.
The majority of people who are sensitive to gluten do not react to avenin. They can eat pure, uncontaminated oats with no problems .
However, a tiny percentage of people with celiac disease may react to avenin. For these few people, even certified gluten-free oats may be unsafe .
One study discovered that most people with celiac disease had the potential to react to avenin. However, only 8% of the participants had an actual response after eating a large amount of oats .
In those cases, the responses were small and did not cause clinical symptoms or relapse. Therefore, the researchers concluded that people with celiac disease could still eat up to 3.5 ounces of pure oats per day .
Additionally, two other small studies found that some people with celiac disease experienced a small immune response and more intestinal symptoms while eating oats than those on a traditional gluten-free diet (
Oats contain a protein called avenin. A small percentage of people with celiac disease react to avenin and may not be able to tolerate pure oats.
Gluten-free diets often have few food choices, especially in terms of grains and starchy foods.
Including oats and oatmeal can add much-needed variety.
Additionally, oats provide several impressive health benefits:
What Are The Best Gluten
Thankfully, many companies and facilities that make oat milk are aware of the cross-contamination issue with gluten and oats and make certified gluten-free products.
Here are a few of my favorite gluten-free oat milk brands
Oatly is the first major oat milk that hit the market, and remains one of the most popular oat milks out there. Based on their website, they only make their oat milk using certified gluten-free oats. All of their U.S. products are certified gluten-free by the Gluten-Free Certification Organization .
Planet Oat, Elmhurst, and Califia Farms
These options might be a good choice for people with non-celiac gluten sensitivity or people who have less severe reactions to gluten and dont have to worry about cross-contamination.
People with celiac disease should stick with Oatly since its the only brand certified gluten-free by a third party tester.
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Halsa Blueberry Oatgurt Drink
This drinkable yogurt beverage from Halsaa brand using sustainably-grown Scandinavian organic oatshas nearly two grams of fiber and five grams of protein per serving. It also meets the dietitian-preferred requirements of containing no GMO ingredients, phosphates, gums, or oils. The only caveat here is the sugar . Luckily, its the naturally occurring kind from the real fruit added, not the added or artificial kind.
Why Are Oatly Suing Glebe Farm
Oatly claims the brand name and packaging of PureOaty is too similar to its own Having examined both the brands and packaging I would have to disagree, on so many counts.
I am so cross about this. Im disappointed. I love Oatly, at least I used to. I have Oatgurt in my fridge, Oatly ice cream in my freezer, and both the Whole oat and chocolate milk from Oatly. I have Oatly Cream and Custard. But Oatly, you might have just lost a loyal and passionate customer over this.
And Im one of those annoying people who will keep telling others.
I think Oatly are bullies. Greedy. Trying to use their status and clout as the bigger brand to push out an already established smaller oat milk brand. As Oatly prepare to establish their own factory here in the UK, this cant be a coincidence.
You can read more here in this article, Oatly takes Cambridge family to court
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Frequently Asked Questions About Homemade Oat Milk
How to store homemade oat milk?
It’s best to store your homemade oat milk in an airtight container in the fridge – unless, of course, you are looking to use it all up in an instant. Make sure your container is completely clean and sterilised and don’t touch the milk or inside of the container with anything.
What is the shelf life of this gluten free homemade oat milk?
In the fridge, the homemade oat milk can last up to 4-5 days.
Why does my oat milk separate?
It is normal for the oat milk to start separating when it stands stagnant for a longer time – it’s a sign of natural ingredients being used in your milk and really nothing to worry about. Simply give it a shake before using and you’re good to go.
Can I freeze oat milk?
Oat milk can definitely be frozen, however, I would only recommend doing it, if you’re planning to use the oat milk in recipes in small amounts. In that case, you can simply freeze your oat milk straight after blending it. I recommend using an ice cube tray for small portion sizes or other freezer-friendly containers. Please don’t try freezing your oat milk in closed glass containers as this could cause them to explode in your freezer.If your oat milk has been in the fridge before you freeze it, give it a good shake before transferring it to a freezer-friendly container.Frozen oat milk ice cubes are a great addition to milkshakes, iced coffee and cold chocolate milk and are wonderfully refreshing for hot summer days.
Is oat milk gluten-free?
Recipes Using Oat Milk
Want to try baking with oat milk? Try my Gluten Free Zucchini Muffinrecipe that uses oat milk and makes them deliciously dairy free!
Looking for a breakfast idea? Substitute the almond milk for oat milk in some Blueberry Lemon Overnight Oats and make undoubtedly oatey!
Feel in the mood for a Smore – any time of day or season? Use oat milk to make the pudding in the gluten free Smore Pudding Cuprecipe. Oat milk is the perfect excuse to bring the campfire to your kitchen!
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First Things First: Are Oats Gluten
Oats are naturally gluten-free, and they are suitable to eat on a gluten-free diet when prepared in a specialized gluten-free facility.
Unfortunately, most times, oats arent tested, and therefore not labeled, to be gluten-free. This is because they are prone to cross-contamination during processing when they come into contact with gluten-containing cereals.
Cross-contamination of gluten in oats can occur when rye, barley, or wheat, are processed on the same equipment as oats. Some people cannot stomach oats at all, regardless of whether they are labeled as gluten-free or not. If youre one of them, you should avoid all oat products, including oat milk.
For more info, read my post on Are Oats Gluten-free?
What Is Oat Milk
Most oat milk is made by adding rolled oats to water, blending the mixture together, then straining the pulp. The result is a non-dairy liquid that has a natural sweetness and creamy texture.
Packaged oat milks usually have a few more ingredients like added vitamins and minerals, flavouring, and sometimes stabilizers, gums, preservatives, and sugar.
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Oat Milk Compared To Other Milks
Compared to cows milk, oat milk tends to have a similar calorie content, but has much less protein. In addition, oat milk has more carbohydrate per serving when compared to many of its plant-based counterparts like almond, coconut, and soy. Most oat milk is fortified with nutrients because many of the beneficial nutrients found naturally in oats are lost in the oat milk production process. Because of fortification, however, many of these nutrients are reintroduced to the milk and thus, oat milk boasts a pretty impressive nutrient profile.
All in all, oat milk serves as a great alternative for those who cannot consume dairy or nut-based products. While it may have some nutritional shortcomings, it does provide some benefit through its vitamin and mineral profile and soluble fiber content. It is ultimately left to the consumer to determine which milk alternative is best for their health and nutrition-related goals.
How Does Oat Milk Compare To Other Milks
So with all that in mind, how does oat milk compare to other milks? Here are some facts:
- Almond milk: Unsweetened almond milk has less calories but more fat and sodium. In contrast, unsweetened oat milk has more carbs, fiber, and protein.
- Soy milk: Both these options are high in calcium, but in general, soy milk contains more protein and carbs, while oat milk is richer in fibers. Oat milk is your best bet for Vitamin D, but soy is richer in the B vitamins
- Coconut milk: Coconut milk contains high levels of calories and fats, so it’s better to consume coconut milk in moderation. Compared to both almond milk and oat milk, it also has less protein. Oat milk is a healthier option, but coconut milk is also a good alternative in moderation.
- Cashew milk: Like oat milk, cashew milk has an inherent sweetness. It’s also a good source of magnesium. However, most store-bought varieties may have less protein and healthy fats compared to oat milk.
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So Is Oat Milk Gluten
Plant-based milk whether its derived from rice, soy, coconut, seeds, or nuts, is generally gluten-free. As such, you would automatically expect oat milk to be gluten-free. Well, the answer is not so simple.
Unprocessed oats do not contain gluten. It appears simple, but theres a catch: oat milk is frequently processed on the same machinery as wheat goods.
In simple words, oat milk is often not gluten-free because of the high risk of cross-contamination. Gluten contamination is often unavoidable because most facilities that process oat milk also process wheat goods on the same machinery as the ones used in processing oat milk.
But What About ‘low Gluten’ Oat Milk
I’m gonna tell you this straight: stop listening to this ‘low gluten’ crap if you have coeliac disease or are on a gluten free diet for medical reasons.
Being on a gluten free diet is exactly that – gluten FREE. Free from gluten.
Not a drop.
Low gluten is not gluten free.
Low gluten oat milk is not gluten free.
Baristas who try to tell you that it is are misinformed.
If you just have a minor intolerance or are avoiding gluten through choice, that’s fine.
But if you need to have a gluten free diet – and especially if you have coeliac disease – low gluten is not good enough.
Sorry to burst that bubble.
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Your Guide To Gluten Free Oat Milk
April 8, 2021 by Sarah Howells
This post may contain affiliate links for which I earn a small comission at no extra cost to you. For more info, check out my Disclosure Policy. Thank you for your support!
I’ve seen a lot of questions popping up lately about gluten free oat milk so I wanted to put together a post to tackle any confusion.
Oats are often a difficult thing to get your head around when you first start on a gluten free diet.
When it comes to oat milk, there’s so much confusion over which ones are gluten free in the UK.
Really though, it’s quite simple. And I shall prove this with my super easy guide to gluten free oat milk in the UK!
I will try to update this guide as much as possible but all was correct at the time of publishing .
As always, recipes often change so please always double check the ingredients.
I recommended using the Coeliac UK Food and Drink Guide or downloading their Food Scanner App.
Using Oat Milk In Smoothies
Oat milk is actually a newer plant based milk option on the market. I only really started seeing it on shelves in the grocery store about 2 years ago, as the plant milk section was always dominated by nut milks like almond or cashew milk.
Now, many people love to add oat milk to their smoothies because it has a very subtle taste that blends well with other ingredients so it becomes pretty much undetectable, except for the added creaminess it provides. Its also a great option for those who want a plant based milk but have an allergy to nuts and nut milks.
When it comes to using oat milk in smoothies, I recommend using a natural, unsweetened oat milk , and to look for a gluten-free certified and organic brand that does not add a bunch of stabilizers and thickeners. The taste will be noticeably cleaner and smoother.
Also Check: Gluten Free Peanut Butter Cups
Is Starbucks Oat Milk Gluten
Though its not always easy to find out what products are gluten-free and those that contain gluten from Starbucks, I was able to find this older allergen information spreadsheet from 2019. This indicates that none of the drinks with oat milk are safe for a gluten-free diet.
Avoid oat milk from Starbucks if you follow a gluten-free diet.
Is Oatly Oat Milk Gluten
Oatly is very transparent about their ingredients and they confirm on their website that they use gluten-free oats for all their oat milks. You can feel good about drinking any of their oat milk flavors on your gluten-free diet.
This is their statement on their website FAQ related to nuts, dairy, gluten and/or eggs:
Our US products are certified gluten-free and made without tree nuts, peanuts, dairy, and egg. Based on the US FALCPA and the FASTER Act , they are safe for people with allergies to the top nine allergens .
In full transparency, some of our partner production facilities also process other products containing top 8 allergens. However, they follow all guidelines laid out by the US FALCPA and FASTER Act and are committed to careful cleaning and testing protocols to prevent cross-contamination. As an added precaution, we also test our finished products to ensure they meet our allergen requirements and are suitable for people with top 8 allergies.
I hope if youve been wondering how oat milk can fit into your gluten-free diet that you have all the information you need to make an informed decision about this ingredient.
Many brands of oat milk are gluten-free, and some are not. Its always a good idea to read ingredient lists and look for a gluten-free label on the packaging before buying.
If youre still worried about gluten winding up in your oat milk, buy the best certified gluten-free oats you can get your hands on and make your own in a blender at home!
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