Diet & Dental Health

The Impact of Milk and Its Alternatives on Your Dental Health

Out of the different things that are great for your teeth out there, not many people stop to consider if milk and its alternatives are beneficial to your overall oral health. I’m here to tell you, though, that the different kinds of milk you drink can matter depending on what your regular diet is and how often you drink the different milks out there.

Perhaps you’re not quite aware of what I mean when I say milk alternatives, though I’m sure you’ve unknowingly passed them before in the grocery store. Besides dairy milk (i.e., cow’s milk), there are also almond milk and soy milk. While cashew and rice milk are also alternatives, I’ll be focusing on the former two today in comparison to dairy milk.

Dairy milk.
Dairy milk is, by and far, one of the most popular choices to anyone’s diet, no matter what they eat or believe in. It’s just so prevalent in our culture that it’s hard to find anyone who hasn’t or doesn’t drink it.

To start, dairy milk naturally has the most calcium and vitamin D of any of these milks. These two things alone are incredibly vital to the health of your teeth and bones, meaning it already takes the crown in these categories. But before we get too carried away right off the bat, it’s worth noting that dairy milk also has unhealthy fats and sugars in it compared to its vegan cousins.

Also, dairy milk is great at providing protein at almost 8 grams per 8 ounce glass of milk.

Soy milk.
Soy milk rivals dairy milk in regards to protein with 7 to 12 grams of protein per 8 ounce glass. So you won’t be wanting for any protein with soy. However, its deficient in vitamin D and calcium in comparison, so you’ll often see that it’s fortified with these vitamins since soy naturally is low in both. Soy milk’s calories are just a bit lower than dairy milk, too.

One huge win for soy milk, though, is the amount of healthy fats it has in comparison to standard milk. In addition, it’s known to have some cancer-fighting agents in it as well, which is always a huge plus.

Almond milk.
Finally, we have almond milk. This takes the cake in terms of total calories at just 35 per 8 ounce glass, beating milk and soy milk by a long shot. Its protein content is quite low, however, at just 1 gram per 8 ounce glass. Like soy milk, it has a lot of healthy fats but is also deficient in calcium and vitamin D, meaning it also needs fortified.

Overall, all three are great for your teeth and oral health, though I’d suggest trying to drink less dairy milk and more of the alternatives for your overall health and long term health. Just make sure that if you switch to a vegan diet, you get the vitamin D and calcium your body needs.

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