Almond Milk vs. Skim Milk for Weight Loss

Including calcium-rich foods, like dairy products, in your diet may help you lose weight, according to a study published in "Obesity Research" in July 2005. Don't despair if you don't drink cow's milk, however, since almond milk has a similar amount of calcium to cow's milk and may be an even better option for weight loss since it has fewer calories.

Calories

Eating fewer calories than you burn through your daily activities is necessary if you want to lose weight. Choosing unsweetened almond milk instead of skim milk may help you do this. While the exact nutrition information varies a little based on the brand, a cup of unsweetened almond milk contains about 40 calories. This is less than half of the 83 calories in a cup of skim milk.

Fat

Skim milk only contains trace amounts of fat, making it a better choice than almond milk if you are trying to consume less fat. Each cup of unsweetened almond milk contains about 3.5 grams of fat. However, this fat is almost all the heart-healthy unsaturated fat, so this isn't necessarily a reason to avoid almond milk.

Protein

Foods that are higher in protein tend to be more filling, making it easier for you to eat less throughout the day. Skim milk has a lot more protein, with 8 grams per cup, than unsweetened almond milk, which only contains about 1 gram per cup.

Carbohydrates

If you are following a low-carbohydrate diet, unsweetened almond milk would be a better choice than skim milk. Unsweetened almond milk only has 2 grams of carbohydrate per cup, compared to 12 grams of carbohydrates in skim milk. Low-carbohydrate diets are just as effective for weight loss as low-fat diets, and may also improve your triglyceride and high-density lipoprotein, or good cholesterol, levels, according to a study published in "Archives of Internal Medicine" in 2006.

Considerations

While unsweetened almond milk is a lot lower in calories and carbohydrates than skim milk, this isn't necessarily the case with other types of almond milk. Original flavor almond milk that is sweetened contains about 8 grams of carbohydrates and 60 calories per cup, which is still less than skim milk, but flavored almonds milks, like vanilla almond milk, are worse for dieters with 16 grams of carbohydrates and 90 calories per cup.