Almond milk is a tasty and versatile plant-based alternative to dairy milk and it provides a long list of health benefits.
And, with the rise in popularity of plant-based diets, almond milk has become a go-to drink for people following these types of diets.
Almond milk is awesome: full of nutrients like protein, B vitamins, fiber, vitamin E, and calcium, it’s also a low-glycemic and lactose-free option. It enriches the body with important nutrients without leading to spikes in the blood’s sugar or allergies.
And, the taste of almond milk is just amazing! However, not every packaging of almond milk you see on the shelves is good for you. Unfortunately, there are certain types of almond milk brands that are full of dangerous ingredients!
So, does this mean you should opt for homemade almond milk instead to be sure it doesn’t have toxic ingredients inside?-Let’s find out!
The Potentially Dangerous Ingredients in Store-Bought Almond Milk
If you consume almond milk, homemade variants are always the preferred choice. But, if you’re unable to make homemade almond milk, choose a brand that’s 100% organic, free of GMOs, soy, gluten, and other harmful preservatives and sweeteners.
Derived from seaweed, carrageenan is an ingredient that is not uncommon in almond milk and other dairy alternatives. It’s used as a thickening and stabilizing agent.
However, according to some findings, this ingredient may harm the GI tract and contribute to tumor growth. Individuals sensitive to this ingredient may experience symptoms like cramps, belly bloating, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, etc.
Although more research is necessary to learn more about the effects of carrageenan on the human body, a lot of companies try to exclude this additive because of these concerns.
Also, other ingredients like gums and emulsifiers are used to optimize the almond milk’s consistency and texture. And, they’re said to be unsafe if consumed in excessively high amounts.
Make sure you avoid almond milk brands that have a high amount of added sugar. Excessive consumption of added sugar ups the risk of poor dental health, weight gain, and other chronic health issues.
With this in mind, when possible, opt for the unflavored and unsweetened almond milk. Other ingredients on almond milk labels that you should avoid are gellan gum, potassium citrate, cane sugar, sunflower lecithin, potassium citrate, vitamin A palmitate, and tricalcium phosphate.
Vitamin A palmitate is a synthetic form of vitamin A and has been linked to allergies, liver toxicity, hair loss, and a higher risk of cancer. Make sure the almond milk is free of artificial sweeteners like sucralose and aspartame too.
These artificial sweeteners may have a negative effect on the blood sugar levels and increase the cravings for sugar-rich foods.
How to Make Your Own Homemade Almond Milk
Knowing that you can’t be 100 percent sure that the almond milk you’re buying is pure and organic, free of harmful ingredients, preparing your own is the best solution.
You will control the ingredients inside and get the most from almond milk!
Let’s check out the recipe together.
You will need:
A cup of raw almonds, soaked in water overnight or two hours in boiling water
5 cups of filtered water
A bit of sea salt
A clean jar
Put the soaked almonds, water, and salt in a blender. Blend on high speed until the milk is smooth and creamy, for a minute to two.
Transfer the milk into the jar. Close it well and keep it in the fridge. You can keep it there for five days tops, although it’s best to consume it sooner.
Good to know:
If you want to enrich your homemade almond milk, here are some great, healthy additions you may consider as well:
- Plant-based protein powder like hemp protein or pea protein
- Superfoods like organic cacao powder, spirulina, chia seeds
- Ingredients rich in calcium like sesame seeds
- Probiotics like kefir or probiotic supplements
- Natural sweeteners like dates and honey
- Spices like turmeric and cinnamon
- Seeds and nuts like hemp seeds and cashews