Myth: Soymilk has less calcium than cow milk
Fact: Soymilk has just as much calcium as dairy milk and it is the only dairy substitute nutritionally comparable to cow’s milk.
The amount of calcium in soymilk is equivalent to the calcium found in cow’s milk. Along with vitamin D, vitamin A and vitamin B12, soymilk is fortified with 30-40% of the daily value of needed calcium per 8 ounce serving. Unlike dairy milk, soymilk contains no cholesterol and is very low in saturated fat. Research shows that calcium absorption from calcium-fortified soymilk mirrors that of cow’s milk. In fact, the USDA 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee concluded that soymilk is the best alternative for people who do not consume cow’s milk due to allergies, lactose intolerance, or cultural and religious reasons. It states “Soy beverages fortified with calcium, vitamin A, and vitamin D, are included as part of the dairy group because they are similar to dairy milk based on nutrient composition and in their use in meals. Other products sold as ‘milks’ but made from plants (e.g., almond, rice, coconut, and hemp “milks”) may contain calcium and be consumed as a source of calcium, but they are not included as part of the dairy group because their overall nutritional content is not similar to dairy milk or fortified soymilk.”
This chart below outlines how soymilk compares to other milk alternatives and to cow’s milk:
|Nutrient Content of Various Milk and Milk Alternative Beverages|
|Bev. (8 oz.)||Cal||Fat (g)||Sat. Fat (g)||Sugar (g)||Protein (g)||Ca.||Vit. D|
|Fortified Soymilk light*||73||2||0.5||6||6||30%||30%|
|2% Reduced Fat Milk*||122||5||3||12||8||30%||30%|
* Data collected from the USDA Nutrient Database.
# Data collected from various sources, outside of the USDA Nutrient Database.