Some school districts in Sacramento have tried removing flavored milk from their cafeterias entirely, but studies show that many students simply skip milk altogether when they do not have flavored milk as an option. Starting in September, chocolate milk will have fewer calories and less sugar. See, Schools May Ban Chocolate Milk Over Added … – CBS Sacramento and Chocolate Milk « CBS Sacramento. The issue is added sugar in chocolate milk. There aren’t many people using unsweetened cocoa powder and a pinch of stevia in a cup of decaf green tea. But what holistic health practice can be done to get the sugar out of chocolate milk? You can make your own and put it in a thermos bottle for a child to take to school in a lunch box. But the four most addictive foods are sugar, chocolate, dairy/cheese, and meat.
Why do some nutritionists say chocolate milk provides much-needed calcium and vitamins, and is a healthy alternative to sugary juices and sodas? It’s loaded with sugar because schools are not making home-made chocolate milk using milk, unsweetened cocoa powder or raw cacao powder, and stevia or a banana or chopped, pitted dates for sweetening it just a little bit.
You can make chocolate milk healthier, since sometimes kids will only drink chocolate milk, because they may be addicted to the chocolate. They also can be addicted to the sugar in the chocolate. But if they won’t drink milk without chocolate, use unsweetened cocoa powder and a mashed banana in a blender or a pinch of stevia. Check out the New York Times article by Anahad O’Connor NY Times: Chocolate milk gets a makeover.
Numerous nutritionists also say that flavored milks, with their added sugars, contribute to the childhood obesity epidemic. Some school districts have tried removing flavored milk from their cafeterias entirely, but studies show that many students simply skip milk altogether when they do not have flavored milk as an option, according to the NY Times article.
At least some milk manufacturers are taking out some of the sugar from commercial chocolate milk. Starting in September, chocolate milk will have fewer calories and less sugar.
The eight-ounce cartons of fat-free and low-fat chocolate milk served in schools will have 38 percent less added sugar and just 31 more calories than regular white milk, said the Milk Processor Education Program, or MilkPEP, the industry group that runs the national “Got Milk?” campaign. On average, cartons of flavored milk will contain less than 150 calories and 22 grams of total sugar this year, the group said.
You can check out the website and report of the school districts. See last week’s report by the School Nutrition Association last week. As far as school foods, the report noted that almost 96 percent of school districts offer students flavored milk, and all but 2 percent offer fat-free milk. If you’re tired of processed foods offered to school kids, you’d be interested to know that one serving of chocolate milk has four teaspoons of added sugar.
Your kids or anyone else don’t need to add sugar to chocolate. In California, the Los Angeles Unified School District voted to ban chocolate and strawberry milk entirely from Los Angeles public schools. Check out a study by MilkPEP in 2009 that revealed that many elementary and high school students don’t drink unflavored milk. When the flavors such as sugar and chocolate was removed from the milk, the study found that milk consumption among elementary school students fell by 35 percent.
The average daily consumption of milk per student, meanwhile, fell to four ounces at schools where only white milk was offered. At schools where all flavors were offered, it stayed at six ounces per student. Most kids enjoy low-fat chocolate milk. But you can make it at home in a healthier way and give it to your child to take to school.
You don’t need to give your child dairy products to drink chocolate ‘milk’. And you don’t need to add sugar. You can use a cup or two of almond milk or coconut milk with a teaspoon of unsweetened cocoa powder added to it and some banana or chopped pitted dates or a pinch of stevia. Put in a blender and then pour in a thermos bottle to take to school. You can use raw cacao powder or unsweetened cocoa powder that has not had the antioxidants removed by being ‘Dutched’ with alkaline chemicals.
Chocolate Pudding or Beverage without Added White Sugar
Also you can make chocolate pudding from putting two tablespoons of chia seeds in a blender with coconut milk. Use about 1 3/4 cups of coconut milk in your blender. Sweeten with 4 small pitted dates or a pinch of stevia or a banana. Add one to three tablespoons of raw cacao powder or unsweetened cocoa powder for each two cups of milk or nondairy milk-like liquid. Then add a dash of cinnamon. You can also add a 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla flavoring. You don’t have to use alcohol-based vanilla. Flavorings also come in glycerin-based forms. Or use a 1/4 teaspoon of peppermint flavoring for mint chocolate ‘milk’ and milk substitute made from water and ground almonds.
If you want to add a different, fruity taste, add some berries such as red raspberries, cherries, or blueberries. If you want the chocolate color, just use a banana or pitted dates. You also can add a handful of any type of nuts when you liquefy this beverage in your blender. Optional is a teaspoon of flax seeds. Liquefy or puree everything into a chocolate milk-like beverage, and pour into a thermos. Your child can take this to school rather than drink flavored milks containing sugars or dairy products. If your child tolerates dairy, use milk if desired.
If you chill this mixture in pudding cups, you can cover and eat like chocolate pudding. A similar recipe comes from Kasey Caletti, Bauman College Natural Chef, and appears on a card given to the public to let people know about Bauman College in Berkeley, CA which teaches holistic nutrition and culinary arts. But basically, a recipe like this can be served not just as a pudding but thinned with milk or coconut milk or unsweetened almond milk, and put in a thermos to be consumed as a beverage instead of commercial chocolate milk. You can also make this type of pudding instead of beverage thicker by adding a scoop of grapefruit pectin powder before blending the emulsion.