Is oat milk bad for weight loss?


Kurt Olsen

Oat milk is the latest craze among those looking to lose weight by substituting it for regular milk, but is this the case?

Is this change likely preventing you from losing those extra pounds despite your best efforts?

In this post, we will discuss precisely what oat milk is, as well as its benefits and drawbacks, and also gain knowledge of how exactly it helps us lose weight.

Oat milk may benefit weight reduction in some circumstances; nevertheless, one must consider whether or not it is the healthiest choice available.

What is Oat Milk?

To make oat milk, oats are soaked in water, then the resulting mixture is blended, and finally, the particles are separated from the liquid using a filter.

This results in a somewhat brown liquid that has the consistency of cow’s milk. This “milk” also has a very robust flavor reminiscent of oats, which is also present.

Oat milk is a relatively recent innovation compared to the product it replaced. In the 1990s, when researchers attempted to develop a milk substitute that did not include lactose, they discovered it.

On the other hand, oat milk has grown in popularity in recent years. This is not due to an increase in the proportion of the population that is unable to digest lactose; instead, it is a result of the widespread belief that it is a more nutritious choice for weight reduction.

Is there any validity to what you’re saying, though?

What Needs to Happen to Lose Weight

Before determining whether oat milk is beneficial for weight reduction, we must first understand how losing weight truly works.

To put it more simply, there must be a calorie deficit to lose weight. This allows our bodies to burn up the energy stored (also known as fat cells) to function effectively.

This results in a natural reduction in total body mass. On the other hand, there is a method conducive to good health for doing this since a calorie deficit that is too great might be exceedingly hazardous to one’s health.

Calories may be obtained from three different sources: carbs, lipids, and proteins.

We expend calories via our basal metabolic rate, which is the number of calories required for our body to operate normally through physical activity and, to a lesser extent, through diet-induced thermogenesis, which refers to the number of calories necessary for digestion.

The formula for successful weight reduction is as follows: the amount of energy consumed (in the form of calories) must be lower than the amount of energy expended (in the form of calories burnt).

The question, therefore, is, what role does oat milk play?

Is Oat Milk Good for Weight Loss?

As was just said, carbs, lipids, and proteins all contribute to our calorie intake. Carbohydrate-wise, oat milk may be counted.

There are around 90–120 calories in one cup of oat milk, depending on the brand; however, there will be additional calories if the milk is sweetened.

One cup of 1% cow’s milk, also a carbohydrate, has between 100 and 110 calories.

The number of calories included in each option falls roughly within the same range.

Oat milk does not aid in weight loss more than cow’s milk since the amount of energy consumed is similar to the amount of energy expended.

Along the same lines of reasoning, drinking milk made from oats does not result in a greater risk of gaining weight than drinking milk produced from cows.

Is there another component of oat milk that contributes to its superiority?

Comparing Oat Milk to Cow’s Milk

The foundation of the dairy category is cow’s milk, which is either low-fat (1% fat) or fat-free.

One of the five food categories on MyPlate that are vital for maintaining a healthy and well-balanced diet is the Dairy category.

Low-fat cow’s milk is one of the most significant sources for providing our bodies with critical nutrients, including calcium, potassium, vitamin D, and protein. It is also one of the best sources for providing us with the necessary nutrients.

Because their nutritional value does not compare to that provided by low-fat cow’s milk, oat milk, and many other plant-based “milk” are not genuinely included in the Dairy category. This is the case.

The absence of protein in oat milk is one of the most notable characteristics that set it apart from cow’s milk.

Cow’s milk with reduced fat has 8 grams of protein per serving, whereas oat milk has just approximately 1 gram of protein per serving.

Because oats do not naturally contain other necessary elements, oat milk has to be supplemented with these nutrients to even come close to matching milk’s nutritional profile.

Therefore, regarding our general health, cow’s milk is much superior to oat milk in terms of its natural capacity to satisfy many of our daily needs for essential nutrients.

Pros and Cons of Drinking Oat Milk

Oat milk is not intrinsically harmful; instead, whether or not it is a good choice is contingent on the context of its consumption and the purposes for which it is used.

The following is a discussion of the benefits and drawbacks of using oat milk as a potential “milk” alternative.


Oat milk is an excellent option for individuals who cannot consume lactose due to intolerance.

Lactose is a kind of sugar that occurs naturally in cow’s milk; however, it is not present in oat milk since all that is required to make oat milk is oats and water.

Oat milk is also an excellent choice for those with a condition known as galactosemia, an inability to digest galactose, a component of lactose. Oat milk may help people who have this problem. Oat milk does not include galactose.

Oat milk that has not been sweetened is a delicious beverage option with minimal calories and no added sugar.


Oats are a food that contains gluten, and people who have Celiac disease are required to adhere to a diet that is entirely free of gluten. Therefore, oat milk is not a choice that would be suitable for these people.

Since oat milk is not technically a dairy product, consuming it exclusively as your sole source of “dairy” might put you at risk for protein, calcium, potassium, and vitamin D deficiency since these nutrients are not present in oat milk.

Oat milk won’t help you lose weight all by yourself, unfortunately.

How to Lose Weight (Healthfully) While Drinking Oat Milk

We now know that drinking oat milk does not directly lead to weight reduction, but if you have the proper weight loss techniques in place, you may include drinking oat milk in your weight loss journey in a manner that is good for your health.

If you want to consume oat milk as your primary “dairy” product, whether out of a personal preference for the flavor or because of a physical incapacity to drink cow’s milk, you need to be sure that you are getting the critical elements that oat milk lacks from other food sources. This is because oat milk does not include specific vitamins and minerals.

To maintain a healthy diet when eating predominantly oat milk, paying particular attention to the nutrients and foods detailed in the following list is essential.


Calcium is a mineral that is required at all stages of life, beginning with childhood to ensure healthy bone growth and development and continuing into adulthood to prevent osteoporosis.

Although some oat milk has calcium added, this is only the case with some. Therefore, you need to be sure that you are consuming an adequate amount of calcium. If oat milk is your primary beverage, you may want to consider increasing your intake of the following:

  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Bok choy
  • Collard greens
  • Canned fish such as sardines
  • Tahini paste (found in a lot of premade hummus dips!)
  • Calcium-fortified orange juice


Potassium is another necessary element that plays a role in regulating nerve impulses, muscular contractions, and maintaining healthy blood pressure.

Because it is often obtained via the consumption of dairy products, you should be sure to include some of the following things in your diet if you exclusively consume oat milk:

  • Any fruit or vegetable that is orange in color, such as oranges, cantaloupe, or sweet potatoes.
  • Spinach
  • Broccoli
  • Peas
  • Mushrooms
  • Cucumbers
  • Potatoes

Vitamin D

The human body can absorb more calcium thanks to the assistance provided by vitamin D, which acts in concert with other minerals. This is why vitamin D is added to cow’s milk products.

Therefore, to get the most bang for your money, you should eat some of these meals with those mentioned under calcium.

  • Salmon
  • Eggs
  • Mushrooms
  • Cereals with added nutrients
  • Canned Tuna
  • Herring
  • Sunshine! (The sun does not provide us with vitamin D directly. It converts the vitamin D these foods naturally contain into a form that our bodies can use.


Our skeletal muscles rely on protein as their primary structural component. This pertains not just to our skeletal muscles but also to our cardiovascular and digestive systems. Consuming the quantity of protein suggested for daily consumption is critical to one’s health.

Compared to cow’s milk, oat milk is a relatively poor source of protein since it only contains one gram of protein, while cow’s milk has eight grams. If you want to drink this alternative to milk, make sure to get a sufficient amount of protein.

  • Beef
  • Pork
  • Chicken
  • Fish
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Beans

Getting The Most From Your Oat Milk

When it comes to alternatives to dairy milk, it is essential to examine the constituents of the product in question.

  • Some kinds of oat milk may include other ingredients besides oats and water. It is essential to read the ingredient list on the back of the packaging before making a purchase if you are concerned about what you are putting into your body since some of the alternatives offered in the market may include oils, gums, sweeteners, and flavorings.
  • Cross-contamination in a company’s facility is always possible, mainly if other products based on wheat, barley, or other grains are processed in these facilities. This is another critical consideration for anyone who adheres to a gluten-free diet. Even though oats do not contain gluten, cross-contamination is possible in a company’s facility. Check the label once again for further proof.
  • For those who don’t eat gluten, here’s a helpful hint: Oatly’s oat milk is entirely free of gluten thanks to the use of gluten-free oats, while the company’s other products have less than 100 parts per million of gluten.

Consuming oat milk regularly and maintaining a healthy diet and exercise routine may assist with weight reduction and ensure that one’s nutritional requirements are met. Oat milk is an option that is low in fat, has a lot of nutrients, and has a taste that satisfies, so it should be considered a leading candidate for shelf space in your refrigerator.

Is oat milk best for weight loss?

Oat milk has a high amount of protein and fiber, promoting satiety. This means that it helps you feel full more quickly and for a more extended period, and it also helps you feel full for a more extended period. This may assist in the regulation of one’s appetite and the promotion of weight reduction.

What milk is best for weight loss?

Which kind of milk is the healthiest for those looking to lose weight? The National Institutes of Health found that unsweetened almond milk had the fewest calories and was beneficial to those who follow a low-carb diet. In addition, almonds include a high concentration of monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA), which are thought to be beneficial for both weight reduction and maintaining a healthy weight.

Is milk or oat milk better for weight loss?

The number of calories included in each option falls roughly within the same range. Oat milk does not aid in weight loss more than cow’s milk since the amount of energy consumed is similar to the amount of energy expended. Along the same lines of reasoning, drinking milk made from oats does not result in a greater risk of gaining weight than drinking milk produced from cows.

Is oat milk or almond milk better for weight loss?

Additionally, oat milk has a much greater number of calories than almond milk does. One glass of almond milk comprises 120 calories. In comparison, one serving of almond milk has just 60 calories, so if you’re attempting to reduce your caloric intake, you may choose the lower-calorie option.

Does oat milk have a lot of carbs?

Oat milk and soy milk are superior to cow’s milk in terms of the amount of riboflavin, sometimes known as vitamin B-2. Even though it contains sugar that occurs in nature, oat milk has a relatively high carbohydrate content. The nutritional content of oat milk is often increased during the manufacturing process by the inclusion of supplementary vitamins and minerals.

How healthy is oat milk?

In terms of its nutritional value, oat milk has beneficial lipids, protein, and fiber; it is low in sugar; and it is rich in vitamins, particularly the versions that have been fortified. On the other hand, cow’s milk is full of harmful fats, has no fiber, only a tiny amount of protein, has a greater concentration of sugar (lactose), and is much more difficult to digest because many individuals are lactose intolerant.

How many calories in oat milk weight loss?

Oat milk has a relatively low-calorie content, which is one of the reasons why it may be beneficial for those trying to lose weight. Oat milk has around 130 calories; one cup of it will provide you with that amount. In addition, it is low in sugar and fat while being rich in protein and fiber, two of the most vital components of a healthy diet.


Oats and water are the only components needed to make oat milk, making it a reasonably simple alternative to traditional dairy.

However, to even come close to providing the same advantages as cow’s milk, it must be enriched with various nutrients.

Those unable to consume cow’s milk due to medical conditions or intolerances may find that oat milk is a suitable replacement for their usual beverage. These people need to be sure that they are getting their nourishment from a wide range of sources to avoid shortages.

We are now aware that the basic principle of weight reduction is that the amount of energy consumed must be lower than the amount of energy expended. Since both types of milk contain almost the same amount of energy, there isn’t one that is preferable in this regard.

Therefore, from the point of view of a Registered Dietitian, the answer to the question “Is oat milk good for weight loss?” is yes. The correct response is that drinking oat milk alone does not reduce weight. However, if the appropriate weight loss tactics are used, drinking oat milk may be readily included in a healthy weight management strategy.

If, on the other hand, you can consume cow’s milk, you should absolutely make an effort to do so since it is beneficial to your health in general. There’s a good reason why it’s the most essential part of the dairy category!

Contact Us

For more information or to make comments and suggestions, please contact:
Kurt Olsen
Dairy Development Coordinator, Missouri Department of Agriculture
Phone: (573) 291-5704
E-mail: [email protected]