Food Truth Freedom

Your food, where it comes from & what's in it

Non-Dairy Coffee Creamer Makes The “ICK” List

I call it “plastic milk,” because non-dairy coffee creamer is just what it says:  non-dairy, not milk. Non dairy coffee creamer has long been on my personal “ick” list.  Why?  Because it is completely made up of artificial ingredients.  There isn’t a drop of “cream” in it!

It does contain milk in the form of soduim caseinate  which is what the label says, “a milk derivative.”  I’m sorry; something that’s listed as a  milk-derivative isn’t milk!


Ingredients (14):

To make sodium caseinate, skim milk solid proteins whey and casein have hydrochloric acid added to them to separate the whey and casein.  Gee, that sounds yummy, doesn’t it?

The sweetness of the non-dairy creamer comes from corn syrup solids.  We all know the story of the corn syrup these days.

Dipotassium phosphate from the EPA site:

“Mineral acids such as phosphoric acid are derived from inorganic rather than carbonized precursors. In water, these acids undergo extensive ionization forming positively charged ions (hydrogen cations) and negatively charged ions (dihydrogen phosphate anions). When the water is removed, the resulting product is a salt (potassium salt). Hence, potassium salts of phosphoric acid (also known as dipotassium phosphate) could be considered a mineral acid because it can ionize to produce hydrogen ions and anions. As a result, the findings in the Mineral Acid RED of December, 1993 could be applied to dipotassium phosphate.”

great valueIn doing research for this article, I’ve noted that much of the dipotassium phosphate available is manufactured  in China and India.  Noting that Wal-Mart imports much of its products from the Chinese, their Great Value brand of non-dairy coffee creamer probably has questionable ingredients.  (Remember the melamine in the baby formula scandal?)

Mono and diglycerides are emulsifiers made from fatty acids, usually palm oil.  Mono and diglycerides are really cleverly disguised trans fats.  The label to the left, you’ll note, has no trans fats.  That’s because trans fats only have to be labeled when they come from triglycerides.  Triglycerides are the main constituents of vegetable oils and animal fats. Triglycerides have lower densities than water (they float on water), and at normal room temperatures may be solid or liquid. Many labels which say “zero trans fats” are not because of the other ingredients.  In this case, the mono and digylcerides from fatty acids and palm oil, not a trans fat free product.  Read labels!

Silicon dioxide occurs naturally in most plant-based foods.   Silicon dioxide food safety is of prime concern especially when it is used as an additive. When added as an anti-caking agent to a food product is not safe when the quantity is more than 2 percent of the food’s weight. More specifically, for SiO2  (silicon dioxide) to be safe, it should be made by a process known as vapor phase hydrolysis. If it is manufactured by any other process, then the recommended particle size of SiO2 should not exceed the safety norms. Again, in noting the possible Chinese connection for this ingredient, I’m very skeptical.

Soduim stearoyl lactylate   is also used as an emulsifier in food.  In this particular product, non-dairy creamer, it may also be added to add sweetness, prevent product breakdown, as a fat replacer and as a foaming agent to give the appearance of cream foam.

Soy lethicin is actually a waste product from the processing of soy oil.  Hexane, an industrial solvent and degreaser, is commonly used in manufacture of this product and all oil seed food items.   Hexane is a neurotoxic petrochemical solvent.

Last on the list are artificial flavors and artificial color.  Why do you want to add more mystery chemicals to your diet? ICK!

I’ll take my coffee black, thanks!

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Author: Bernice Matherson

Humanitarian, environmental and food activist, blogging on current societal issues. My blogs cover what's in our food and how it affects our health; the effects of our seemingly small actions regarding chemical and pesticide use in and around our homes and its impact on our Earth.

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