Evaluation of physicochemical and glycaemic properties of commercial plant-based milk substitutes

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Jeske, Stephanie
Zannini, Emanuele
Arendt, Elke K.
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Springer International Publishing
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The market for plant-based dairy-type products is growing as consumers replace bovine milk in their diet, for medical reasons or as a lifestyle choice. A screening of 17 different commercial plant-based milk substitutes based on different cereals, nuts and legumes was performed, including the evaluation of physicochemical and glycaemic properties. Half of the analysed samples had low or no protein contents (<0.5 %). Only samples based on soya showed considerable high protein contents, matching the value of cow’s milk (3.7 %). An in-vitro method was used to predict the glycaemic index. In general, the glycaemic index values ranged from 47 for bovine milk to 64 (almond-based) and up to 100 for rice-based samples. Most of the plant-based milk substitutes were highly unstable with separation rates up to 54.39 %/h. This study demonstrated that nutritional and physicochemical properties of plant-based milk substitutes are strongly dependent on the plant source, processing and fortification. Most products showed low nutritional qualities. Therefore, consumer awareness is important when plant-based milk substitutes are used as an alternative to cow’s milk in the diet.
Plant-based milk substitutes , Protein requirement , Glycaemic index , Dispersion stability
Jeske, S., Zannini, E. and Arendt, E. K. (2016) ‘Evaluation of physicochemical and glycaemic properties of commercial plant-based milk substitutes’, Plant Foods for Human Nutrition, 72(1), pp. 26-33. doi:10.1007/s11130-016-0583-0
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