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Ask Dr. Gourmet

Is "Almond Breeze" safe for diabetics and pre-diabetics?

I am lactose intolerant and prediabetic. I have recently started using a dairy substitute product called "Almond Breeze". My husband and I really like it (he is diabetic). We use the vanilla flavored unsweetened kind. It only has 45 calories and has 30% calcium, same as milk. Is this product safe for us to use? Can this product be used the same as milk in recipes?

Dr. Gourmet Says...

a glass dish spilling raw almonds out onto a wooden table

This is a great choice for you. Almond Breeze is the brand name for a milk-like product made from almonds. It is produced by the Blue Diamond almond growers cooperative. There's not much in it other than water and almonds. The tapioca starch you see on the ingredient listing is to help with thickening. While there is some added calcium listed on the package, almonds contain a lot of calcium.

I'm unable to tell you how well this product will work in recipes as I have not had any experience with this specific product. It should work well with simple recipes such as cream soups, but in baking it might not be as successful. Certainly using the vanilla flavored might affect the taste of your dishes and using the plain would be a better choice.

There's a little bit of fat in a cup, but because the product is made from almonds this is going to be mostly the good monounsaturated fats.

Thanks for writing,

Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP, CCMS
Dr. Gourmet