Your almond milk may not have very many almonds
The makers of Blue Diamond almond milk are being sued because their almond milk contains just 2 percent almonds, with the rest of the so-called “milk” being made up of sugar, water, sunflower lecithin and carrageen.
The lawsuit alleges that the almond milk packaging is deceiving consumers to believe the product is healthy as it says it is made with real almonds and contains photos of almonds.
“It’s important to note that almond milk ingredients will vary by brand and type of product, such as unsweetened almond milk or vanilla flavored,” says Rosemary Mueller, registered dietitian with Advocate Weight Management in Park Ridge, Ill. “Manufacturers also fortify products to add nutrients that are normally lacking – usually to bring these products up to standard with a similar product. For example, almond milk is typically fortified with calcium, vitamin E, vitamin A and vitamin D.”
While almond milk can be made at home using just water and almonds, many manufacturers add ingredients to improve taste, texture and appearance. Some popular additives include sugar, salt, locus bean gum, sunflower lecithin, gellan gum and natural flavoring.
Mueller recommends consumers read the nutrition labels and ingredient listing. Ingredients are listed from heaviest ingredient to lightest.
“Although almond milk may not contain as many almonds as you might think, it is not necessarily an unhealthy beverage,” says Mueller. “If someone needs to avoid dairy for specific health reasons, unsweetened almond milk may be one of a variety of other options to obtain calcium and fat-soluble vitamins in the diet.”
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