Milo — the ultimate false god : singapore


Just lượt thích Vegemite and tomakhổng lồ sauce, chocolate drinks are staples in the Aussie pantries. Kids love sầu them and they provide a chance to lớn get another serve sầu of milk in. Milo has been in the news recently as Nestle has conceded khổng lồ reduce the label’s 4.5 Health Star Rating (based on making up Milo with milk) down lớn the 1.5 stars it deserves for what you get in the tin. We know these powders are full of sugar but how bad are they really? And is there a healthier choice than Milo?


How healthy is Milo? And how does it khổng lồ other chocolate powders?

When we wonder how good these drinks really are, what we really want to lớn know is how much sugar is in them. The World Health Organisation that we limit our intake of added sugars khổng lồ no more than 6 teaspoons a day. Not only does the amount of added sugar vary between products, but also the type of sweetener used. Brands often add sweeteners, lượt thích stevia, sugar alcohols and aspartame to lớn clayên they are low sugar, or sugar-free. While swapping to these sugar alternatives gets around the issue of added sugars, they may not actually be that healthy.

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Sugar alcohols (like erythritol) aren’t really a sugar (or alcohol!). They taste very sweet, but they don’t stiông chồng khổng lồ our teeth lượt thích sugar, and we don’t absorb them very well. You get the taste, without the energy và with limited effect on blood sugars. Stevia is a herb that is much, much sweeter than sugar so only small amounts are needed. The trouble is, both stevia và sugar alcohols this means they can cause some like gas, bloating or diarrhea. Individual tolerance varies, so watch your portions. Children are typically being more sensitive to the digestive sầu upphối.

If you’re reducing sugar for weight loss, some studies show that switching to lớn alternative sweeteners doesn’t actually help. Retìm kiếm inkhổng lồ the safety và long-term use of stevia, sugar alcohols and artificial sweeteners is still ongoing as they are fairly new additions to our foods. There is some early evidence suggesting they aren’t actually healthier than sugar, they’re just not sugar. We need khổng lồ wait for more retìm kiếm in this area khổng lồ know for sure.

Whichever sweeteners you chose to eat, rethành viên the bigger picture. It’s your total intake that counts & the variety of wholefoods that you eat in a day, a week & a year that really contributes to your health. The type of sweetener in a chocolate drink shouldn’t make a difference if you’re only having it now & again.



Here is a round-up of 14 chocolate powdered milks available at Coles and Woolworths. First is their ingredients, then scroll down for a table.



Chocolate powders are just a set of sweeteners (cane sugar, stevia, alcohol sugars or artificial sweeteners), cocoa & sometimes added vitamins và minerals. I have sầu changed the text colour the vitamins and minerals so you can easily see them in lớn the other ingredients. Fortification with vitamins and minerals is helpful for people who could be elderly or unwell who may rely on drinks lớn boost their nutritional intake. I don’t relying on these drinks as a boost for fussy eaters. It can reduce their appetite making family foods even less appealing.

Abundant Earth Organic Drinking ChocolateOrganic sugar, organic cocoa powder (23%), organic skyên ổn milk powder, natural flavour.

Akta-ViteSugar, Cocoa, (17%) Barley Malt Extract, Calcium Phosphate, Ferric Pyrophosphate, Calcium Ascorbate, Nicotinamide, Riboflavin, Thiamine Mononitrate, Retinyl Acetate, Folic Acid, Cholecalciferol.

AvalancheErythritol, Cocoa (Soy Lecithin), Natural Flavour, Stevia Extract, Salternative text.

Cadbury Drinking ChocolateSugar, Cocoa Powder, Starch (Maize or Tapioca), Mineral Salt (501), Flavour.

FangksNatvia Natural Sweetener (Erythritol, Steviol Glycosides), Cocoa (11%), Emulsifier (Soy Lecithin), Minerals (Calcium, Magnesium, Iron), Salternative text, Vitamins (C, B1, B2, A).

Jarrah Hot ChocMilk Solids, Cocoa (18%), Glucose Solids, Vegetable Fat và Oil, Salternative text, Mineral Salts (341, 340, 451, 452), Vegetable Gum (415), Sweetener (951), Flavour, Emulsifiers (471 or 472c, 481, 322 (Soy)), Anticaking Agent (551), Colour (160A).

HorlicksWheat Flour, Malted Barley (15%), Dried Whey, Mineral (Calcium Carbonate), Sugar, Vegetable Fat, Dried Skimmed Milk, Salt, Acidity Regulator (Potassium Bicarbonate).

MiloExtract of Malternative text Barley (16%) Or Malternative text Barley & Rice (Total Extract 35%), Milk Solids, Sugar, Cocoa, Minerals (Calcium, Iron), Maltodextrin (Corn), Vitamins (C, B3, A, B6, D, B2, B12), Emulsifier (Soy Lecithin). Contains Gluten, Milk and Soy.

Milo Lower SugarExtract of malt barley (33%), milk solids, soluble corn fibre, cocoa, minerals (calcium, iron), maltodextrin (corn), vitamins (c, b3, b6, b2, d, b12), emulsifier (soy lecithin), sweetener .

Milo Plant BasedExtract of malt barley or malt barley và rice (total extract 44%), cocoa, soluble corn fibre, soy protein isolate, sunflower oil, oat flour, minerals (calcium, iron, zinc), sugar, maltodextrin (corn), vitamins (c, b3, b6, b2, d, b12), flavour.

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Milo XtraExtract of malt barley or malt barley và rice (total extract 38%), milk solids, cocoa, sugar, minerals (calcium, iron), emulsifier (soy lecithin), maltodextrin (corn), flavour, vitamins (c, b3, b6, b2, d, b12).

NesquickCane Sugar, Cocoa, Emulsifier (Soy Lecithin), Spice (Cinnamon).

OvaltineMilk Solids (45%), Malt & Barley Extract (27%), Glucose Solids, Cocoa (7%) (Contains Soy Lecithin), Vegetable Oil, Mineral Salts (341 or 340, 451, 452, 500, Iron Pyrophosphate), Flavours (Contains Wheat), Salternative text, Xanthan Gum, Sugar, Emulsifier (471 or 472c, 481), Sweetener (951), Anticaking Agent (551), Colour (160a).

Republica Drinking ChocolateNatural sweetener (erythritol), organic fair trade cocoa powder (23%), natural flavour, vegetable gum, salt.

Sipahh StrawCane Sugar, Tapioca Starch, Cocoa Powder, Maize Maltodextrin, Flavour, Sweetener (Sucralose).

SustagenNon Fat Milk Solids (51%), Sugar, Corn Syrup Solids, Cocoa (6%) (Contains Soy Lecithin), Whey Protein Concentrate (Milk, Soy Lecithin), Whole Milk Powder (Soy Lecithin), Flavour, Lactose (Milk ), Vitamins (Sodium Ascorbate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Niacinamide, Retinyl Acetate, Cyanocobalamin, Thiamin Hydrochloride, Folic Acid), Minerals (Ferrous Sulphate, Zinh Sulphate).

Vitarium Du ChocolatNatvia Natural Sweetener (Erythritol, Steviol Glycosides), Cocoa (10%), Emulsifier (Soy Lecithin), Salt

The verdict: As with most packaged foods, going with the simplest ingredients các mục is usually a good start. None of the ingredients used above sầu are dangerous, but eating foods with long ingredients lists too often, usually isn’t good for your long term health.

Now that we’ve sầu seen what’s in these drinks, we need to lớn find out just how much sugar is in it, using the nutrition information panel.

Nutrition Information

Obviously sugar is the main nutrient we’re looking for with these chocolate powdered drinks. I’ve also included some information on sodium for those that need it, but one that was high.

BrandSugars / 100gSodium / 100gSweetenersAdded Vitamins + Minerals
Abundant Earth Organic Classic69.5g69mgSugarNone
Akta-Vite32.9g11mgSugarVit A, B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, C, folate, calicum, magnesium, iron, zinc, potassium
Avalanbịt Sugar Free0.1g110mgErythritol SteviaNone
Cadbury Drinking Chocolate77g4mgSugarNone
Fangks Sugar Free12.5g43mgErythritol SteviaVit A, B1, B2, C, Calcium, Magnesium, Iron
Jarrah Hot Choc2.6g69mgAspartameNone
Milo46.4g120mgSugarVit A, B2, B3, B6, B12, C, D, Calcium + Iron
Ovaltine Lasting Energy44g110mgSugarVit B2, B3, B6, B12, C, D Calcium, Iron, Phosphorus
Republica Drinking Chocolate0.1g140mgErythritolNone
Sippah Straw52g31mgSucraloseNone
Sustagen54g240mgSugarVit A, B1, B2, B3, B12, C, E, Calcium, Iron + Zinc
Vitarium Du Chocolat0.1g68mgErythritol SteviaNone
Milo Plant Based27g120mgSugarVit B3, B6, B2, C, D, B12, Calcium, Iron, Zinc
Milo XTRA38.8g140gSugarVit B3, B6, B2, C, D, B12
Milo 30% less sugar30.1g135mgSteviaVit B3, B6, B2, C D, B12, Calcium, Iron

Which is the best chocolate powdered drink?

There is no clear winner here, as none of these options are a staple health food. They’re all an option to lớn have sầu sometimes as a sweet treat or perhaps to make milk more enjoyable (again, only sometimes). While I can’t piông chồng a winner, I can narrow it down to help you chose one.

Lowest sugarAvalanđậy & Vitarium had the least sugar, but they relied on sugar alcohols và stevia. So while these drinks won’t contribute khổng lồ your daily sugar intake, they may cause some tummy troubles and aren’t a great choice for kids. They also have sầu a strange sweetness that some people (lượt thích me) just don’t like. Don’t forget that we don’t have a lot of research about their use as a sugar replacement in the long term, especially for children. So cutting down on sweetened foods generally is a better strategy than just switching.

Lowest Sugar without sweetenerOf those made with regular cane sugar, Akta Vite, Horlicks, Ovaltine và Milo had the least sugar. Although still very high, I liked that they were under 1/2 sugar ( to Nesquick being 80% sugar!).

Added vitamins and mineralsAgain, these aren’t essential in a drink we only have sầu occasionally, but if you lượt thích the idea of a nutritive sầu boost, then Akta Vite, Ovaltine, Milo varieties, Fagnks & Sustaren get another tichồng.

Which one of these you decide lớn have sầu in your pantry depends on what the rest of your diet looks like. If you rarely have any added sugars (& be realistic when you consider this) và you don’t have sầu it often, then go for your favourite. None of these drinks arehealthy but you can find one to fit inlớn your diet in small amounts. Consider how often you are buying tins of powdered drinks. If it’s more than once a fortnight, you’ll need to lớn focus on cutting down as well as choosing one with less sugar.

We have sầu a tin of regular Milo in our pantry. Our family enjoys the taste, we use it sparingly và don’t have sầu it every day. I lượt thích that it is fortified & not the highest in sugar. I wish there was a lower sugar Milo that didn’t use stevia though (nothing wrong with stevia, I just really dislike the taste). I’d love lớn know which one you decide is the best for your family & if this information has changed your choice!

If you’re now wondering what milk to lớn set up your chocolate powder with, you can’t beat good old cow’s milk for nutrition và price. If you prefer a plant milk, check out my to lớn make sure you’re choosing a healthy replacement. Many plant milks aren’t the healthy option they seem.

Sarah Moore is a mum, and university qualified Registered Nutritionist with a decade of experience working with families khổng lồ improve sầu their health and well-being. Sarah has a simplistic & practical approach to family nutrition & can help the overwhelm of eating & living well with private consultations, tin nhắn Q&A và her school lunchbox ebook. You can also find her on Facebook và Instagram for more healthy tips và tricks. 

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