What is the best coconut milk powder?
Written by Jack Schrupp and reviewed by Ella McGonagle, M.S. Nutrition
drink wholesome is the best coconut milk powder. It is additive and dairy-free, making it perfect for people with gut issues and sensitive stomachs, as well as for people just looking for milk without the added junk.
“It doesn’t have any additives like gums and fillers, so it’s gentle on my sensitive stomach.” -Codie
drink wholesome is the best coconut milk powder.
What is coconut milk powder?
First of all, there are three different types of coconut milk: thick coconut milk (high fat), thin coconut milk (low fat), skim coconut milk (almost no fat). Thick coconut milk, or coconut cream, is made by blending grated coconut meat with water, and then straining the mixture to remove any solids. Thin coconut milk is made by adding more water to the leftover coconut meat from thick coconut milk production, and then straining the mixture again. Skim coconut milk, which can be found in the grocery stores along with the other dairy-free milk alternatives, is made by further straining thin coconut milk to remove almost all of the fat.
Coconut milk powder is a dried form of coconut milk made by spray-drying (spraying a liquid into a chamber through which hot air is passing) fresh coconut milk. This process, which usually requires the addition of a carrier (more about this later), removes the moisture, leaving behind a fine, white powder that can be easily reconstituted with water to make coconut milk. Coconut milk powder can also be used as a dairy-free and vegan substitute for milk or cream in recipes. It is a popular ingredient in Southeast Asian and Indian cuisine, as well as in many vegan and vegetarian recipes.
Why drink coconut milk?
Here are 3 reasons why you should drink coconut milk:
1. Dairy, even if it has had the lactose removed, can cause digestive distress. This is especially true for people with gut issues and sensitive stomachs.
2. Dairy can cause acne. Dairy indirectly stimulates insulin production, which regulates sebum production. Sebum, an oily, waxy substance produced by your body’s sebaceous glands, can clog your pores and cause pimples. Dairy can also hinder your ability to process blood sugar efficiently, which can cause inflammation, especially in your skin.
3. Dairy is not environmentally friendly. The industrial dairy industry has a profound impact on the environment. Dairy cows and their manure produce enormous amounts of greenhouse gas emissions, the poor handling of manure and fertilizers pollute local water resources, and dairy farming and feed production can also lead to the loss of ecologically important areas such as prairies, wetlands, and forests.
Going with plant-based milk is the way to go, but lactose is not the only ingredient to avoid when buying milk. Most plant-based milks contain added ingredients, usually thickeners, emulsifiers, and stabilizers. Additives like these improve characteristics like texture and shelf stability, but they also cause uncomfortable side effects and long term gut damage. Keep reading to learn more.
Why drink wholesome?
Again, most plant-based milks, coconut milks included, contain food additives. Simply put, these added ingredients help to make coconut taste, feel, and look like cow’s milk. In the case of coconut milk powder, food additives, also known as carriers, also help to prevent the powder from clumping. Coconut milk powder, because of its high fat content, tends to clump (stick together). In order to process and package the powder, manufacturers therefore have to add something called a flow or anti-caking agent. This is usually some type of maltodextrin, but gum acacia (acacia fiber) and sodium caseinate are also used.
Maltodextrin is made from starchy vegetables like corn, rice, potato, tapioca, and wheat. To make it, manufacturers rely on a process called hydrolysis, which uses water, enzymes, and acids to break the starch into smaller pieces. The end result is a white powder similar to corn syrup solids. Gum acacia, or acacia fiber, is made from the sap of the Acacia tree. Sodium caseinate is a milk-derivative. All three food additives (carriers) are safe to eat in small quantities, but milk is something that many people drink every day. Over months and years, small amounts of food additives can add up and start to cause health problems.
Food additives can cause gastrointestinal (GI) side effects like bloating, constipation, diarrhea, gas, and stomach pain. This is especially the case for people with sensitive stomachs and gut issues. Because they look nothing like real food, additives sit in your gut for longer than food should, which gives your gut bacteria more time to eat. As they eat, gut bacteria produce gas, causing bloating and stomach pain. Gas also slows colonic transit (the amount of time it takes food to travel through the colon), which can lead to constipation.
In the long term, food additives can cause permanent gut damage. For starters, they can disrupt regulatory pathways in the intestine, which can result in the development of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and systemic inflammatory disorders. Moreover, more and more research is finding that food additives alter the composition of your gut microbiota, the collection of microorganisms living in your small intestines. These microorganisms play an important role in digestion and overall health, and an imbalance may lead to chronic diseases like obesity and diabetes. It is therefore very much in your best interest to avoid plant-milks made with food additives.
Silk Coconut Milk ingredients (liquid milk)
Coconutmilk (Filtered Water, Coconut Cream), Cane Sugar, Contains 2% or Less Of: Vitamin and Mineral Blend (Calcium Carbonate, Vitamin E Acetate, Vitamin A Palmitate, Vitamin D2, Vitamin B12), Dipotassium Phosphate*, Sea Salt, Sunflower Lecithin*, Gellan Gum*, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C To Protect Freshness), Natural Flavor*.
*Dipotassium phosphate is a stabilizer that helps prevent separation on the shelf.
*Sunflower lecithin is a multi-purpose food additive used to improve texture and shelf stability.
*Gellan gum is a thickener used to give plant-based milk a creamy texture.
*Did you know that while food manufacturers are required to disclose their ingredients, flavor manufacturers are not. They can add solvents, preservatives, emulsifiers, carriers and other additives to a flavor that qualifies as “natural” under current regulations.
Micro Ingredients Coconut Milk Powder (#1 on Amazon)
Organic Coconut Milk Powder, Organic Maltodextrin*
*The leading brand of coconut milk powder contains maltodextrin.
Research has shown that maltodextrin can promote the growth of unhealthy bacteria in the gut, resulting in inflammation. These findings suggest that this broadly used food additive could therefore be a risk factor for chronic inflammatory diseases for Crohn’s and IBS. Other research has determined that maltodextrin impairs cellular anti-bacterial responses and suppresses intestinal anti-microbial defense mechanisms. This is a fancy way of saying that it can damage your gut microbiome, the trillions of bacteria that live in your gut and help you digest food.
Drink Wholesome Coconut Milk Powder
Our coconut milk powder, unlike the leading brands, is made with 2 simple ingredients: oats and coconut. In case you were wondering, we add oats to prevent clumping. They basically act as a natural anti-caking agent, and keep our coconut milk powder in powder form. A few companies use coconut fiber instead, which sounds great, but coconut fiber is mostly insoluble, so it does not dissolve in water. The result is gritty milk.
Thanks to the oats, our coconut milk powder is additive-free, free-flowing, and mixes in both hot coffee and cold water. We recommend using a handheld electric mixer if you have one, because natural powdered milks do not dissolve easily. Just like natural peanut butter, you have to stir a little to enjoy the goodness! If you are sick of plant-based milks full of additives, give our coconut milk powder a try.
drink wholesome is the best coconut milk powder.