Ha! They can’t even call this product “milk” – it’s a “dairy beverage” – that should tell you right there that there’s a problem. Sort of like American Cheese is not really a cheese, but a “cheese product”.
So, I hadn’t even heard of this product, but I just read a post on a forum about it, so of course I had to google.
First, let’s look at the ingredients of Hood real non-fat milk:
NONFAT MILK, ASCORBIC ACID (VITAMIN C), VITAMIN A PALMITATE, VITAMIN D2.
And the Nutritional Data:
Serving Size 1 cup (240mL)
Amount per Serving
Calories 80 Calories from Fat 0
% Daily Values
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol <5mg 1% Sodium 125mg 5% Total Carbohydrate 13g 4% Fiber 0g 0% Sugar 12g Protein 8g 17% Vitamin A 10% Vitamin C 10% Calcium 30% Iron 0% Vitamin D 25% Now here's the ingredients for the Hood Calorie Countdown Fat Free Dairy Beverage: WATER, ULTRAFILTERED FAT FREE MILK, CREAM*, TRICALCIUM PHOSPHATE, SALT, DISODIUM PHOSPHATE, MONO AND DIGLYCERIDES, CARRAGEENAN, LOCUST BEAN GUM, SUCRALOSE (SPLENDA® BRAND), ACESULFAME POTASSIUM, VITAMIN A PALMITATE AND VITAMIN D3. *ADDS A TRIVIAL AMOUNT OF FAT Nutritional Data: Serving Size 1 cup (240mL) Amount per Serving Calories 45 Calories from Fat 0 % Daily Values Total Fat 0g 1% Saturated Fat 0g 1% Trans Fat 0g Cholesterol 0mg 0% Sodium 160mg 7% Total Carbohydrate 3g 1% Fiber 0g 1% Sugar 3g Protein 8g 16% Vitamin A 10% Vitamin C 0% Calcium 30% Iron 0% Vitamin D 25% Pretty disgusting, huh? It looks like they watered down real milk to help lower the natural sugars (milk sugar, by the way, isn't bad sugar like refined sugar), and then because the watered-down milk obviously tastes flavorless, they had to add salt, artificial sweeteners, and other chemicals and thickeners to give it texture and flavor. This is their claim to fame:
Hood® Calorie Countdown® is a line of rich and creamy dairy beverages that provide the wholesome, delicious nutrition of milk without all the sugar, calories and carbohydrates.
Wouldn’t it still be better to just drink non-fat milk? You’re not consuming that many more calories, (actually the calories are higher for the Hood Calorie Countdown 2% and chocolate versions at 90 calories each) and you can actually drink something real! But consumers believe the hype that Big Food companies dish out to them without even bothering to glance at the list of ingredients. Very sad.