“If I don’t drink milk, where will I get my calcium from?”
The milk industry advertises milk as a good source of calcium. However, before we fall prey to the fear of not getting enough calcium, we need to answer some basic questions for ourselves. Where does the cow get her calcium from?
The answer is simple, calcium is a mineral, it comes from the ground and anything that grows on the ground is likely to contain calcium.
It’s interesting that whenever a patient suffers from osteoporosis they start taking calcium supplements and consuming more dairy. But shouldn’t we ask ourselves, that if they were already taking dairy all their life, how did they get osteoporosis in the first place? Once we start asking the right questions, then becoming Vegan doesn’t mean going low on Calcium. It instead means a healthy, compassionate and fulfilling life.
Some tips for ensuring you have enough Calcium while being Vegan:
Check your vitamin D levels and supplement if necessary. Vitamin D is necessary to absorb the calcium.
Have plenty of greens, beans, and seeds. All of these are rich in calcium.
Spinach contains oxalates which may prevent the absorption of calcium so make sure your greens are varied.
Tea, coffee, colas, sugar, alcohol and other drugs are acidic in nature and leach the bones of calcium.
Avoid animal protein, this includes meat fish, chicken and eggs as well as all forms of dairy. These are acid yeilding in our body as proteins break down into amino acids. Also they all lack fibre.
Ofcourse, exercise- this helps bones regenerate
Well, I know some of you are like: all this is fine, but what about my morning chai/coffee? What about folks who’s morning breakfast means cereal? Or people who can’t take a morsel without curd or buttermilk?
Experiment with Plant Milks! There is quite a variety of dairy milk alternatives to choose from, for purposes as varied as morning chai or coffee, cereal, smoothies, or mashed potatoes. Here are a couple of options which you can try making at home: Let us know what you think!
P.S. For any milk you use, give it some time. Try it a couple of times instead of just once. It takes time to get used to the change. Keep trying different plant milks for the ones that work best for you.
Ingredients : Rolled oats , water and natural sweetener like honey, dates,coconut sugar , date sugar.
Mix 1 cup of rolled oats and 4 cups of water in a blender Churn it for half a minute. Drain the content through muslim cloth and milk is ready.
Calories : 30cal per small cup
Do not boil the milk as it can thicken or curdle.
Ingredients : 1 cup of Almond, 4 cups of water, Natural sweetener
Soak the almonds for 8 to 10 hours previous day. Next day use the almonds with or without skin into the blender and add 4 cups of water . Churn it for 2-3 minutes to get smooth milk.
Drive it under muslim cloth and milk is ready.
Almond milk can be warmed but avoid boiling it.
Calories : 50 cal per small cup.
How to make a good Vegan Chai?
- One key item to remember is not to over heat or under heat your plant milk. It also tends to curdle at high heat.
- Try different plant plant milk and try them atleast 3 times.
- Plant milks tend to separate when added to boiling water. I usually do a slow pour so that the initial few seconds will cool the mixture. You can also add a tbsp of water before adding milk.
- The additives in some of the packaged plant milks may change the texture and consistency of your chai enough that it can go from great to unpalatable if not used correctly.
- Oats milk, almond milk and soy milk work great for chais 🙂
How to make a good Vegan Buttermilk?
- It’s the simplest and fastest thing ever. And guess what you don’t need a culture or let your fermentation sit through the night!
- Mix the plant milk of your choice and the lemon juice or white vinegar in a jar or bowl until well combined
- Let the mixture rest at room temperature for about 10 minutes. After this time, the milk will thicken and curdle
- Voila! your buttermilk is ready
- Garnish with coriander or spices as per taste!
- Coconut milk and soy milk work great for buttermilks 🙂
Let us know if this blog was helpful and if your experiences with plant milks. To consult us for vegan and gluten free diets, reach out to us on www.healingharmony.in Also, watch out this space for our wellness retreats www.karvanretreat.com