Nourishing the body with plant foods is one of the biggest food trends in New Zealand right now, as Kiwis become increasingly health conscious.
Whether its extending “meat free” Mondays to become a “weekday vegetarian” or committing to 100% plant foods, more and more people are choosing a healthy plant-based lifestyle. In fact, more than 460,000 Kiwis now report their diet as “almost all” or “all” vegetarian – an increase of 27 per cent in the past four years.
Nut milks are at the centre of this movement. From sipping on an almond milk latte, to blending up a cashew milk brekkie bowl or cooking with coconut milk, enjoying nut milks is an easy switch that anyone can make. In fact, in the past year sales of nuts milks have risen by 24 per cent.
So why are people making the switch? Here are five key reasons people are going nuts for nut milks:
1. Less sugarUnsweetened almond milks are a great option for smoothies and your morning coffee, if you are looking to reduce the amount of sugar in your diet. Unsweetened almond milk contains no added sugar and can contain 60 per cent less calories than lite dairy milk
2. Calcium needs coveredGetting enough calcium had previously been a concern for people looking to switch to non-dairy milks, but in 2016 Australian and New Zealand food law was changed allowing nut-based milks (with at least 0.3% protein) to be fortified with a range of essential nutrients including calcium. So Good Almond Milk now contains as much calcium as lite dairy milks . So how do you know if your nut milk contains a good amount of calcium? Simply check the Nutrition Information Panel on the pack and look for a nut milk that provides 120mg of calcium per 100mL.
3. Unlock energyAs well as calcium, some nut milks can be fortified with vitamins B2 and B12. As part of a balanced diet, B2 plays an important role in helping your body release the energy from foods. These B vitamins also help combat tiredness and fatigue. So whether you struggle to get going in the mornings or are looking for an afternoon pick-me up, forget the quick sugar fix – nutrient-rich nut milk may be just what your body needs.
4. Going greenAs people are becoming more aware of the environmental and ethical issues of food production, particularly of animal food production, plant foods and milks are gaining popularity. They’re not only good for your body, but they can also be good for the planet. The Australian almond industry is also booming, enabling almond milk producers, like So Good, to source their nuts locally and support our growers.
5. Free from gluten, lactose and cholesterolWhether trying to lower cholesterol or manage intolerances and allergies, an increasing number of Australians are looking for foods that are “free from”. Soy and nut milks tick a lot of boxes, offering choices that are naturally free from gluten, dairy, lactose, and cholesterol.
If you haven’t tasted plant milks yet, a great way to start is by ordering your take-away smoothies or hot drinks with a plant milk. It’s a delicious way to try them out and find your favourite variety. Plant milks are also a great match for your Weet-Bix. A tasty all-rounder like unsweetened almond milk is a popular plant milk to start with.