Whole vs. Soy Milk - A Better Shake

Soy milk vs. whole milk - which one makes a better milk shake? How much difference is there between whole (cow's) milk and Soy milk? Plenty, if you ask me. In reality the differences are not that far apart.

Each contains vitamins, minerals, protein, sugars and fat and comes in a variety of flavors. It is the amount and quality those ingredients that makes the difference, not the taste.

I used my daily fat burning walk to go to the supermarket. When there, I went to the dairy aisle to purchase soy milk.

Chocolate ShakeSoy milk is great for those nutritional shakes for weight loss. It seems 90% of those nutritional shake recipes call for skim or soy milk, but not whole milk. Why is this, I wonder?

Experts (including me) will tell you that soy milk has 6 to 12 grams of protein per serving and when added to a protein shake can give up to 20 grams per serving. Whole cow's milk also has 8 grams of protein per serving. So what's the difference?

The US Food and Drug Administration approved the health claim that "25 g of soy protein a day, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease."

Soy is a source of high-quality protein that helps you eat less often and decreases hunger. Soy protein helps to maintain muscle mass during weight loss or body building programs. Soy is a fast-digesting, high-quality protein source with a superior amino acid profile (it's high in arginine and glutamine as well as the branched-chain amino acids leucine, isoleucine and valine), and isoflavones are powerful antioxidants with multiple health benefits. Okay, there is a difference in the quality of protein in milk.

Score 1 for Soy Milk, 0 for whole milk.

What else should you know about milk? Both Soy and cow's milk contain cholesterol, right? Wrong, Soy milk has 0 g cholesterol, while whole milk has 35 mg of cholesterol. That's 11% of your recommended daily value (RDA) in one 8 oz. glass.

Score another 1 for Soy and 0 for whole milk.

Many Soy milk brands carry the American Heart Association's logo for being "heart healthy" Whole milk can't get this award because of it's high cholesterol and fat content. Soy milk is low in saturated fat only 3% RDA. While whole milk contains 25% RDA of saturated fat. That is a lot for one glass of milk. And not very condusive to a healthy lifestyle or losing weight.

Score another 1 for Soy milk and 0 for whole milk.

But isn't whole milk full of calcium and other vitamins? NO, not really. It is high in calcium about 30% RDA and so is Soy milk. So they are even on that score. Soy milk has 25% RDA of Vitamin D and so does whole milk. Another even score. But Soy milk has significant quantities of other vitamins and minerals that whole milk doesn't. For instance Vitamin B12, Iron and Robflavin are found in soy milk in significant quantities, but not in whole milk.

Score 3 for Soy milk and 2 for whole milk.

Calories are always a big concern for the weight conscious so lets look at those. Whole milk supplies 150 calories with 70 of those from fat. Where as Soy milk in only 80 calories with 25 of those from fat. Making Soy the clear winner in this category.

Score another 1 for soy and 0 for whole milk.

One last thing to look at, I promise and that is sugars. Believe it or not sugars are food to burn. They get your metabolism going and can actually burn pretty fast, if you use them. If you don't use the calories, it would make sense that unburned sugars would just stay on you. Which they do, if they aren't burned up right away the body converts them to fat and stores that for later use.

Therefore, if you are trying to lose weight a reduction in sugar content in your diet makes a lot of sense. Reducing the sugars you cosume can result in burning stored fat. A glass of soy milk contains only 7 g of sugars while whole milk has 11 g of sugars. So a big differnce there, 50% more sugars in whole milk vs. soy.

Score another 1 for soy and 0 for whole milk.

That's my take on the whole vs. soy milk thing. I scored it 8-2 in favor of Soy. But, you can make up your own mind, following is a comparison chart.

Soy Milk

Whole (cow's) Milk

Ingredient Serving - 8 oz % Daily Value Serving - 8 oz % Daily Value
Calories 80 2000/day 150 2000/day
Calories from fat 25   70  
Total Fat 3g 4% 8g 12%
Saturated fat 0.5g 3% 5g 25%
Trans fat 0g   0g  
Poly unsat. fat 1.5g   n/a  
Mono unsat. fat 0.5g   n/a  
Cholesterol 0mg 0% 35mg 11%
Total Carbs 7g 2% 12g 7%
Dietary fiber 0g 0% 0g 0%
Sugars 7g n/a 11g n/a
Protein 6g 12% 8g 15%
Vitamin A   10%   6%
Vitamin C   0%   4%
Calcium   30%   30%
Vitamin D   25%   25%
Iron   6%   0%
Vitamin B12   15%   n/a
Riboflavin   25%   n/a

Formula 1 nutritional milk shake mixOkay now that we got that settled what is soy milk good for besides it's nutritional value? Making soy milk shakes of course. When mixed with Formula 1 nutritional shake mix soy milk significantly increases the nutritional value of the shake, whereas whole milk doesn't.

A-ha the truth comes out. When looking at the comparison chart many people would agree that both varieties are within acceptable limits for a healthy diet. But, if your are looking to make a milk shake then using to soy milk makes a lot more sense. Especially if you want are trying to lose weight.

If this sounds like you, then you might be interested in the nutritional value of soy protein based Formula 1 shake mix.

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