Many people fill up their cup of pure black filtered coffee with a coffee creamer instead of milk or cream because they think it’s healthier. But this belief is totally untrue.
Highly-processed non-dairy coffee creamers are definitely not better for you than natural dairy options; in fact, they are much worse.
Coffee creamers became popular in the 1950s, and originally they just contained sugar and cream. However, as the years went by and creamer companies tried to save money on creating their product, coffee creamers are less and less likely to actually contain any sort of cream. Most creamers nowadays contain chemical sweeteners, additives and other synthetic ingredients instead.
For example, if you look at the ingredients in CoffeeMate’s creamer you will see the following:
Water, corn syrup solids, partially hydrogenated soybean oil and/or cottonseed oil, and less than 2% of sodium caseinate (a milk derivative), dipotassium phosphate, mono- and diglycerides, sodium aluminosilicate, artificial flavor and carrageenan.
While this list may not mean much to most people, let’s take a look at some of the particularly concerning ingredients:
Corn syrup solids
These are a type of sugar that comes from corn syrup that is usually genetically modified. These mostly dextrose sugars are created when corn starch is bathed in hydrochloric acid.
Partially hydrogenated oils
A form of trans fats, one of the worst types of fat you can consume. Trans fatty acids can lead to both heart disease and diabetes. An estimated 30,000 premature deaths in the US are the result of high consumption of trans-fatty acids.
This protein is found in milk, and because it doesn’t have any lactose in, Sodium caseinate is often used in non-dairy creamers. The ingredient is used to give the creamer a more “milk-like” texture and look, but this nasty ingredient is also used in paints and plastics, and can cause to health problems, including allergies and neurological conditions.
But can I still drink coffee?
There’s definitely no reason to stop drinking coffee entirely. Filtered black coffee with no additives or sugar can actually be very good for you. More reliable evidence is becoming available that supports the health benefits of coffee, with studies revealing that coffee can actually help to prevent health conditions like diabetes, Mellitus, some cancer lines, Parkinsonism, and Alzheimer’s disease. The caffeine in coffee, while having some negative health associations, also helps proper cognitive functionality.
If you really can’t live without creamer there are alternatives, you can either add some real cream to the mix, or make your own organic coffee creamer and sip your hot beverage without worrying!
Organic Coffee Creamer Recipe – Homemade Cinnamon Strudel Coffee Creamer
1 cup whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
4 tablespoons maple syrup
1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
Whisk together the milk, cream, maple syrup, and cinnamon in a saucepan over medium heat. When the mixture begins to steam remove from the heat and stir in the extracts. Strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a bottle and store in the refrigerator.
This recipe from Deliciously Organic lasts about 10 days and makes two cups.
By Charlotte H.