Maybe you drink plant-based milk because you can’t have dairy.
Maybe you prefer it for the taste.
Perhaps your reasons are rooted in animal or planetary welfare.
Whatever your motivation, you probably regard your chosen plant milk’s health benefits and nutritional profile as a definite plus.
It might surprise you, then, to learn one of the best-kept secrets of the wellness industry:
The vast majority of plant-based milks you see in the grocery store aren’t as good for you as you might think.
Many plant milks lining the shelves of supermarkets strain out much of the raw material, be it almonds, oats, cashews, or something else.
Unfortunately, that means you’re not getting all of the nutritional goodness that’s present in the ingredients.
Additionally, a lot of the plant milks you see in stores contain unhealthy additives, sugar, and preservatives.
The situation may seem bleak…but we found a healthy, sustainable, and tasty plant milk brand that’s disrupting the industry by making what their determined founder refers to as “the world’s most sustainable and nutritious plant milk brand”.
She named the brand ‘Malibu Mylk’, and they make creamy, delicious, nutrient-packed flax-based milks.
The key to both their uniqueness and their success?
They don't strain anything out.
Instead, they simply grind the flax and add water and other natural ingredients depending on flavor, such as a touch of cinnamon or a pinch of himalayan salt.
Flax is a natural emulsifier, so when ground it creates the same texture as an egg and makes a super creamy alternative to cow’s milk.
Malibu Mylk is the fruit of adversity.
Fuisz was having some challenges while trying to get pregnant, so she went to see various fertility specialists.
A couple of them recommended that she go on an elimination diet.
The trouble was, after she eliminated dairy, nuts, and soy, there was no milk left for her to drink.
Her lightbulb moment came when she suddenly thought “What if I make milk from flax seeds?”, so she pulled out her blender and started playing around with simple ingredients.
The very first iteration of Malibu Mylk.
Cutting Calories While Increasing Sustainability and Nutritional Value
Fast forward a few years later and Fuisz is a Mom and successful business owner.
We asked her about the mission behind Malibu Mylk, beyond her initial search for a milk she could drink during her elimination diet.
That’s when she beamed and told us:
Malibu Mylk is creating the world’s most nutritious, sustainable milk–period.
While that is a big claim, Malibu Mylk is truly doing something most other brands aren’t.
A lot of so-called “sustainable” plant milks are actually horrible for our planet because brands engage in wasteful and resource-intensive practices that generate tons of greenhouse gasses and carbon emissions.
Malibu Mylk is “not only the healthiest milk for your body, it’s also the healthiest milk for mother earth”, says Fuisz.
The only water required to make their milk is natural rainfall, because growing flax does not require any water inputs aside from rain.
This makes flax more sustainable than other plant milks; one glass of almond milk, for example, requires an average of 371 liters of water to produce (from growing the almonds and creating the final product).
In a world with growing water shortages, that adds up.
Flax also contains an abundance of fiber, omega 3’s, and protein, making Malibu Mylk great for the gut, great for the skin, and great for overall health and vitality.
It also has far fewer calories than other plant milks, which is remarkable considering how creamy it tastes.
For example, Malibu Mylk’s flax + oat flavor contains only 50 calories per serving, whereas most conventional oat milks have around 120 calories per serving.
The company makes a few different flavors, and their ‘slightly sweetened’ variety uses organic dates rather than refined sugar as a sweetener.
As a Mom, this has been a great go-to for Fuisz when her kid wants something sweet.
It only has four grams of sugar per serving, but it scratches that itch for indulgence while still providing nutritional value to growing kids.
Full of Fiber
We were particularly interested in the digestive benefits of flax milk, so we asked Fuisz for the lowdown on flax and gut health.
She explained that flax is loaded with insoluble fiber, which acts as a prebiotic.
Your gut needs both prebiotics and probiotics to work in harmony together. Getting that extra insoluble fiber helps things move through the gut. Most Americans aren’t getting anywhere near the amount of fiber they need.
Malibu Mylk contains both fiber from the flax itself, as well as added fiber from inulin, which is a healthy and clean form of added insoluble fiber derived from the agave plant.
Each glass of Malibu Mylk contains about four grams of insoluble fiber–a significant push towards the daily recommended amount of 25 grams for women and 38 grams for men.
Modern-day diets don’t always lend themselves naturally to fiber intake, with only 5% of Americans meeting the recommended daily target.
Instead, the average American consumes only 16 grams of fiber per day–only half as much as recommended.
Since it’s so versatile, many customers use Malibu Mylk multiple times per day in different foods and beverages, pushing them closer to optimal fiber intake.
It can be used:
- In smoothies
- For desserts that call for milk
- On its own as a healthy and hydrating beverage
In the case of the ‘slightly sweetened’ flavor, it can even be used as a little treat or pick-me-up during that mid-afternoon slump.
Transparency with Ingredients
After Fuisz got turned on to how unhealthy and unsustainable other plant milk brands are, it became an important part of Malibu Mylk’s ethos to practice transparency with their ingredients.
While many brands use ‘natural flavors’ in their plant milks, it’s difficult to be transparent with these because the ingredients in natural flavors are often unclear.
Instead, Malibu Mylk uses only real extracts, such as vanilla extract.
It’s more expensive, but they believe in using ingredients their customers can understand and trust.
Support for Sustainability
Malibu Mylk has recently begun a partnership with Big Green, an organization that builds learning gardens in low-income communities.
As the company evolves, they plan to donate a share of profits to Big Green.
When talking about big green, Fuisz wistfully recounted her own childhood experiences with gardens.
There was something about being in a garden and being near fresh produce that I found really moving.
She emphasized the importance of providing that opportunity to all children so that they have the chance to understand where food comes from, watch things grow, and nurture that process.
Since Malibu Mylk was inspired by Fuisz’ fertility journey, partnering with an organization bringing together kids and sustainability felt like the perfect way to bring the company’s journey full-circle in alignment with her values.
Strength and Gratitude
Although Malibu Mylk is an amazing company with a unique product, the journey of building the company has not been all sunshine and rainbows–far from it.
Fuisz shared with us that there are “constant challenges” that come up, each one new and different from the last.
Sometimes dealing with the onslaught of obstacles that can pop up all at once can be incredibly stressful and upsetting.
Building an ethical, sustainable business is not for the faint of heart; it requires strength and grit.
At the end of the day, however, the gratitude from Malibu Mylk’s customers make the difficult parts of the journey worthwhile.
In fact, Fuisz receives emails from customers fairly regularly saying “oh my God, your product, it’s changed my life”.
She explained that these messages often come from a contingent of people who can’t have gluten, dairy, nuts, or soy who want a healthy alternative.
They didn’t have an option prior to the advent of Malibu Mylk, but now they have a healthy, tasty option that’s just as good as if they had gone through the trouble of making it at home.
Fuisz is especially grateful, though, to be able to provide a nutritious and enjoyable option to little kids who struggle with allergies to cow’s milk and nuts.
What is a Healthy Diet?
Since Fuisz is both a nutrition junkie and someone operating a business in the health food space, we were curious to hear her insights on what constitutes a healthy diet.
Her advice was sage:
A healthy diet is about balance. It’s about listening to your body, it’s about eating local, seasonal ingredients that are treated with care…[and] for each person it means different things.
We think there’s a lot of wisdom in these words.
No two individuals are constructed in quite the same way.
And while there are some general principles you can follow (like consuming healthy, whole plant milks without additives), one’s own version of a healthy diet will not look identical for any two individuals.
If you listen to your body, what does it tell you?