If you really hate regular milk — or have some other aversion to eating dairy — by all means, drink almond milk. It’s a perfectly healthy staple to keep around the house and add to your smoothies, pour over cereal, or just drink plain. However, if you’re drinking it because you think it’s healthier, there’s no need. Firstly, it’s not the healthiest plant-based milk at the store. And secondly, cow’s milk has much more calcium than almond milk. After 40, you really need calcium. It’s essential for your body to perform muscle contraction, nerve and heart functioning, and other biochemical reactions. If you don’t get enough calcium from your diet, your body starts taking calcium from your bones — that’s no good if you want them to stay strong well into your golden years.
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If you always opt for coffee over tea, you could be missing out on a major metabolism boost. In a recent 12-week study, participants who drank 4-5 cups of green tea daily, then did a 25-minute workout, lost an average of two more pounds and more belly fat than the non tea-drinking exercisers. What’s its magic? The brew contains catechins, a type of antioxidant that triggers the release of fat from fat cells and helps speed the liver’s capacity for turning fat into energy.
You might want to think twice before ditching dairy if you’re trying to lose weight—despite what your Paleo-preaching CrossFit friends tell you. Cheese is a satisfying, portable, and inexpensive food that’s packed with calcium, vitamin D, and protein. “Calcium can also promote weight loss because it helps maintain muscle mass, which boosts and helps maintain metabolism, helping you burn calories more efficiently throughout the day,” says Tanya Zuckerbrot, RD, author of The Miracle Carb Diet: Make Calories & Fat Disappear—With Fiber! That doesn’t mean you can help yourself to a cheese-drenched casserole, though. Work cheese into fiber-rich snacks to make them more satiating.