Last Updated on December 27, 2020 by Dr Sharon Baisil MD
Milk is a definite addition to one’s diet since the very beginning of life. It is said to be a crucial part of the diet and can have many advantages for health.
But are these conditions the same for someone with diabetes? As a diabetic individual, it is necessary to know and be sure about the food’s safety. Today, we will look into answering such questions about soy milk.
Are you curious about…
- Is soy milk good for diabetes?
- What are its nutritional components?
- What are the benefits of soy milk?
So let us get started!
Is Soy Milk Good for Diabetes?
Soy milk can be a good alternative for regular cow milk, especially for a diabetic. Soy milk is thus, good and safe for consumption by diabetic individuals.
Diabetes is a chronic condition of metabolism. It can affect the blood sugar levels that can give rise to other symptoms and physical discomforts.
Milk and dairy are debatable when it comes to one’s diabetic choices. Milk is highly composed and consists of lactose. Lactose is a form of sugar and thus increases the carbohydrate content in milk.
The consumption of milk can, therefore, be risky if not done right. The use of soy milk over regular milk is a recommended choice.
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Soy milk is often used by individuals who are lactose intolerant. The reason being that soy milk is devoid of it and thus serves as a low carbohydrate and lactose-free milk substitute.
Moreover, the absence of lactose in Soy milk is responsible for not hampering diabetic sugar levels. Hence it is better and safer than regular milk.
Besides, soy milk is also enriched with the other goodness that is found in milk. It is high in levels of calcium. As it is obtained from soy, a naturally high-protein item, it is also nutritionally sufficient with protein.
It is also high in vitamins and minerals that can provide the body with essential nutrients required by diabetics.
Switching to soy milk as a diabetic replacement can be very beneficial to your health. It will reduce the intake of direct sugars that give rise to the level of carbs in the body and provide other essential elements.
Moreover, it is also available in many grocery stores easily. It is not compromising even in terms of taste. You can even make your diabetic-friendly smoothies with soy milk and use it as a cereal milk alternative.
How does Soy Milk benefit Diabetic patients?
Soy milk, as we have seen by now, is healthy as well as recommended for diabetics. The best part is that it is lactose-free.
If you are diabetic and intolerant to regular dairy due to the presence of lactose, then soy milk can be your savior.
Also, are you vegan? Soy milk is often the first choice for vegans as well!
It is great nutritionally because:
- Low in fat
- Low in carbohydrates
- High in calcium
- High in protein
It has also been observed upon experimentation and researches that Soy milk is good for Type 2 Diabetes patients. It has helped to maintain normal and healthy blood sugar levels.
Another great advantage of soy milk for diabetic individuals is keeping the body’s function properly. Diabetics often have to suffer from neuropathy disorders and related discomforts.
Soy milk consumption has shown positive results in maintaining these symptoms under control and diabetics healthy. Soy milk has also been proved helpful in keeping cholesterol levels healthy.
It assists in decreasing the levels of LDL, that is, the bad cholesterol. Thus, soy milk consumption is also responsible for keeping away the risks of developing heart diseases, especially for diabetics, as they are more vulnerable to developing cardiovascular ailments.
What is the Glycemic Index of Soy Milk?
The Glycemic index is an essential and accurate measure to determine if a specific food is good or not for any diabetes patient.
Three major Glycemic categories are distributed as so:
|Glycemic Index Categories
|Glycemic Index Range
|Low Glycemic Index
|From 0 to 55
|Medium Glycemic Index
|From 56 to 69
|High Glycemic Index
|70 and above
Soy milk is such a food item that is low in the Glycemic Index. The Glycemic Index of Soy milk is just 30. This indicates that soy milk is definitely safe and rather recommended for diabetes patients.
What is the Nutritional Value of Soy Milk?
By now, we have covered the information that soy milk is enriched with regular milk’s goodness.
Not only that, but it is also filled with other nutrients that can be beneficial to diabetic health.
Let us have a look at the nutritional components of Soy milk.
|Nutrients available in 100g of Soy milk
Therefore, you can see from the above table that soy milk is enriched with plenty of nutrients.
Which is the Best Soy milk for individuals with Diabetes?
According to many dieticians and diabetes specialists, certain soy milk varieties are better than others. Let us know what those are:
- First of all, it is most important for a diabetic to avoid sugar as much as possible. Therefore, one should opt for sugar-free or low-sugar Soy milk types. They are healthier and have lesser numbers of carbohydrates as well.
- There are many soy milk drinks, packaged soy milkshakes, etc., found in stores. Artificial flavors are often used to make these, but they might not be the best for your diabetic health. Opting for unflavored Soy milk is safer and lesser in carbs and calories, and hence, it is healthier for your diabetic blood sugar levels.
Besides all this, it is also crucial to pay attention to the quantity of this milk alternative that you consume. Moderation is key when it comes to diabetic food habits.
Although soy milk is low in calories and sugars, make sure to have controlled amounts of this soy milk. One or two cups of this milk are great for the body.
Try not to cross this quantity in a day, be it drinking the milk directly or using some soy dairy product like – tofu, ice-cream, yogurt, etc.
Moreover, always keep a check on the effects it has on your body. If you experience any allergies or any discomforts on switching to this milk, it is to be immediately stopped.
10 Health Benefits of drinking Soya milk
There are many benefits of drinking soy, as it may be clear from its nutritional composition. Let us have a look at the numerous benefits.
- Soy milk, although a milk substitute, has lesser calories. But it has just as much protein as found in regular cow milk. Hence, it does reduce the calories without compromising the content of protein.
- The presence of many minerals such as calcium, and vitamins A, B, and D helps absorb many other nutrients and minerals.
- Unlike milk, soy milk is lower in fat. Fat can be a good resource for health, but at the same time, too much of it can be harmful. Soy milk has a lesser quantity of fat as compared to regular cow milk. It is also lower in saturated fats that can harm the health at times.
- Soy milk is a plant-based product, unlike regular milk, which is an animal-based product. As a plant-based product, it contains isoflavones phytoestrogens, also known as plant chemicals. These are great for the health and assist in keeping away the development of cancer in the body.
- The various plant chemicals in soy milk have also been tested and proved to help keep away osteoporosis and even menopausal symptoms in women.
- Soy milk also decreases the amount of bad cholesterol found in the blood. LDL, also known as bad cholesterol, can lead to various cardiovascular diseases. Consuming or switching to soy milk can help in keeping these cholesterol levels under check.
- The plant chemicals are also great in keeping away heart risks and related diseases. Thus, soy milk is a heart-protective agent.
- Soy milk is a good low-fat dairy product. It is great if you want to keep your body weight under control. It can even assist you in getting a rise in excess fat and obesity.
- Soy is also amazing for the skin. It helps to prevent acne and skin breakouts. It also decreases the skin’s darkening and keeps away lines and wrinkles as it has anti-aging properties. It also keeps the hair healthy and nourished.
- Just like milk, soy milk is also rich in calcium. It is good for bone health and strength.
Even with all these benefits for health, one needs to be careful. Soy products are genetic and processed. It is best to stick to the recommended safe amounts.