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FAQ - BestLife International
Q: How can you have active Acidophilus and Bifidus cultures in Soya-Rice and Soyalicious if there is no lactose to support lactobacilli?
A: This is due to an important innovation in our formulating technology we are very proud of. Certain fructo-oligosaccharides substitute for lactose very well and have proven an ideal environment for beneficial intestinal flora. It is true that normally, it does no good take Lactobacillus probiotics if there is no lactose in your diet. Our years of experience, has resulted in technology that solves this problem and this has been independently verified by extensive tests. Now strict vegetarians or people with 100% lactose intolerance can have the incredible health promoting and detoxifying benefits of probiotic cultures in their daily diet. They can also do this economically without supplements. You must have milk sugar or the special ingredients in Soya-Rice in your diet for Lactobacillus Cultures to be effective. By the way you cannot have live bacteria in Aseptic (radiated) products, regardless of what the label says. If you prefer the taste of Sammi's Best Whey & Rice be assured it has the same concentration of cultures and sufficient lactose to support them. The majority of those with lactose intolerance will not be adversely affected with the amount remaining.
Q: Do I still get as much calcium? That is one of the main reasons I drink milk.
A: Total calcium content is the same as in milk, but our primary calcium source is Calcium Citrate the kind of organic calcium you get in orange juice, one of the most useable types of calcium there is for people. In cow's milk the calcium comes from the calcium caseinate, the insoluble casein in milk responsible for so many allergies. Good source for calves, not so good for people, as evidenced by osteoporosis being a big problem only in those countries where processed milk consumption is high. Calcium Citrate is 10 times more useable than Calcium Carbonate (used in Silk and other soymilk brands) and about 12 times more expensive to use. Our recommendation for optimum calcium absorption is to take a good magnesium supplement with our products or drink our new diet shake with extra magnesium. Yellow corn meal is an excellent source of magnesium.
Q: What is the benefit of Coconut Oil and why not offer a nonfat version of your soymilk?
A: Sunflower Oil is highly monounsaturated and helps control harmful types of fat you get from other foods. The right kind of fat is a healthy part of a balanced diet. It also gives our product better taste and texture. People cannot benefit from our nutritional superiority if they don't like the taste. Nonfat milk has almost one gram of fat that is 66% saturated. Our products are equivalent to 1% low fat milk in total fat, but are only 14% saturated, so have a little less saturated fat than nonfat milk. Sammi's Best™ contains no homogenized fat or hydrogenated fat. Furthermore, essential fatty acids are just as important as protein, carbohydrates, or minerals in your diet. Those who consistently live over one hundred years do not have fat free diets. After warning customers about hydrogenated fat for years, trans-fats are now, finally recognized by the FDA as a contributor to heart disease. The FDA has recently announced that labels will be required to show trans-fat content. Our products are among the first to do this. The fat in our products is 80% monounsaturated like olive oil and contain no trans-fats. We use high oleic acid sunflower oil to help maintain more high density lipoproteins (HDLs) or good cholesterol and to neutralize the harmful effects of bad cholesterol or Low Density Lipoproteins, (LDLs) as well as balance blood cholesterol. Essential fatty acid deficiency can result in obesity, poor vitamin and nutrient absorption and scores of health problems.
Q: Do your soy products contain only natural occurring Isoflavones?
A: Yes, natural soy Isoflavones and phyto-estrogens have proven to work more effective in helping women with menopause than concentrates. Three to four glasses of Sammi's Best Soy or Soya-Rice a day with meals, deserts or as a nutritional beverage by itself provides optimum amounts of phyto-estrogens and Isoflavones in our opinion. A good tasting product makes it easy to consume adequate amounts of soy compounds. One to two glasses of our diet shake provides even more.
Q: What is GMO, and what does that mean? Is your soymilk independently tested for GMO?
A: Genetically Modified Organisms, genetically modified seeds or seed that have been developed using bioengineering technology. We use Certified Non-GMO sourced ingredients. That means the soy seed ancestry can be traced and documented. Europe will not permit the sale of food products that originate from or contain genetically modified ingredients. Once a product tests positive for GMO it cannot be marketed in Europe. Basically, GMO soybean seeds, called Round Up ready by farmers, have been developed to allow soybean growers to use the powerful herbicide, Round Up on the broadleaf plant without killing it, as would normally be the case with the Non-GMO version. We would like to sell our product in Europe and believe they have some valid reasons for banning GMO in the first place. Some say it's just a hybrid plant. Some studies however, indicate that it's a lot more than that and that there are inherent risks and health hazards that need to investigated more. It does cost us more to produce our products with identity preserved Non-GMO and organic soybeans. We have reviewed the research on both sides and choose to pay more. Our entire product is third party tested and meets strict European standards for GMO free foods.
Q: I've been reading that soy is not healthy, even dangerous. How do you answer those claims?
A: Those are agenda based claims without credible substance. It is negative propaganda that when thoroughly investigated holds no weight against the hundreds of independent peer review studies that conclude soy to be an extremely healthy food. It's foolhardy to discount soy based on a little biased information and ignore a hundred times more information to the contrary from a hundred times more sources. We do think that too much soy could be unhealthy due to excessive protein or certain estrogen containing compounds. That would mean drinking an impractical if not impossible amount of our product. We have yet to read anything negative about soy that applies to our products or has a valid factual basis in regard to the actual consumption rate. The owners and staff of our company all use our products and so do our children and grandchildren. We have a very qualified staff. There is too much information from around the world on the many health benefits of soy to argue with. The only negatives that seem to have validity are the ones associated with soy grown from GMO seeds. Having soy in the diet has proven beneficial for so many people for so long that it's positive health advantages are without question.
Soy peptides and compounds can be useful in preventing a number of degenerative diseases if people would just make some adjustments in their diet. Soy has been a key part of more meals for a lot longer than homogenized milk has, but is just now starting to be recognized in the US as a viable alternative and threat to cow's milk. The national radio talk show Duke and the Doctor, has addressed these same rumors recently and there is no credible research behind any of these claims. Even the extremely cautious FDA has stated it believes soy can help prevent certain degenerative diseases. This is a rare position for the FDA concerning a natural food. We are very suspicious of where this new negative information originates and who is behind it. It seems to coincide with increased sales of soy products and increased awareness and concerns about cow's milk. The book "Milk The Deadly Poison" at the time of this writing has reached the top ten at amazon.com. For every one page of material you can find about the negatives of soy you can find at least a thousand condemning cow's milk that does have substance.
Q: Why have only three grams of protein compared to eight in milk, is that enough protein for children?
A: We try to offer products that are well balanced. Some people criticize us for being low in protein while others applaud us for being more in line with human requirements. We have plenty protein when considering the role our product should play as part of a balanced diet. The healthiest longest living people in the world do not have high protein diets. Human milk is 80% whey. That is why body builders prefer whey and lately are accepting the quality of soy protein. Without the complex bovine digestive system, the main protein source in milk, calcium caseinate, is hard to utilize. In fact phospho-proteins (caseins) in milk can prevent calcium absorption. Too much protein can cause other problems and can damage the kidneys. Recent research published in the New England Journal Of Medicine indicates one reason why Americans are a higher risk for some types of degenerative disease is the high consumption of meat and dairy proteins.
Let's agree that our mother's milk is the best standard to reference when creating a human alternative to bovine milk. How much protein would you guess is in human milk? It is an accepted fact that breast feeding for as long as possible provides a better source of nutrition than any formula or animal milk. Human babies that breast feed the longest tend to grow faster, have fewer sicknesses and are more intelligent. Considering our products provide more protein than breast milk, we feel it makes our position pretty hard to argue with. Do you feel you have more in common with Daisy the cow or your Mother?
Q: Your list of ingredients show you use different sugars, why so many and doesn't that mean a lot of extra sugar?
A: No, our products are low in sugar. If milk containers were required to show contents, Lactose, a simple sugar, would be number one. We choose natural sugars that help stabilize carbohydrate energy and blood sugar. None of our sugars are processed using methods that produce an unnatural or unhealthy finished product. Everything you cook is processed. Herbs, extracts, dried fruit, fruit juice and breads are all processed or refined in some way. The question we ask is; is there anything in the processing procedure that would make the end product unhealthy? Some things are over-processed and unnaturally refined to the point of losing nutritional value or having unhealthy residuals. We don't use bleached white sugar in anything and that is the primary sweetener for the majority of Americans.
Our primary sweetener is unrefined, Organic Cane Juice that has been evaporated. Cane juice still contains minerals, potassium, calcium and Iron. Our complex carbohydrates come from Maltodextrins, Oligodextrins, Brown Rice Syrup, Tapioca Food Starch, Chicory Root. Our milk alternatives are 60% complex to provide stable time released energy. We use Fructose as a simple sugar. Fructose (fruit sugar) is sweeter per calorie and helps bridge the gap between simple and complex carbohydrates because it raises and lowers blood sugar at an equal rate without stimulating overproduction of insulin. Fructose allows you to use less total sugar because it is sweeter and reduces calories. Honey, for example is fructose and sucrose combined. Doctors recommend our products carbohydrate package to many diabetics.
The difference between carbohydrates and sugars on food labels is widely misunderstood. Simple sugar is listed sugars, complex sugar is listed under total carbohydrates which includes both. Our bodies are fueled by carbon based foods. The far majority of calories in fruits and vegetables come from sugars. A diet too low in sugars especially complex sugars is not natural to humans. The healthy plants on this Earth all provide an abundance of carbohydrates. Human milk is about 80% carbohydrate. Is orange juice, apple juice, carrot juice, potato juice and watermelon juice healthy? Absolutely. The sugars you get in our products are the same as you find in those fruits and vegetables. Typically a glass of orange juice will have a total of about 35g of carbohydrates mostly in the form of fructose, our soymilk has 9g mostly in the form of Malto and Oligodextrins and 40% organic cane juice (raw sucrose). Our products have less total sugar and better balanced carbohydrates than any other brand we've seen. They are also excellent sports beverages because of the complex carbohydrates, vitamin and mineral content.
Q: I don't know if I am allergic to lactose or the casein in milk. What is the difference?
A: Lactose intolerance is not a true allergy. As people grow older and sometimes even as children they do not produce enough lactase in their system to breakdown lactose/milk sugar. This is usually gradual until the point of discomfort. Ethnic background has much to do with lactose Intolerance. The majority of Asian, Africans and Hispanics are inherently intolerant to milk past childhood. Caucasians/Europeans lose the lactase enzyme more gradually. For example at age 45 you may be able to drink two glasses of milk a day, at age 55 even one glass may cause bloating, stomach cramps or diarrhea. That is why millions of people are constantly experiencing the discomforts of lactose intolerance without blaming the milk they drink. Generally, lactose intolerance manifests in stomach related or digestive problems. Almost as common is various allergic reactions to insoluble casein in milk, used to make Elmer's glue, nontoxic paints, plastics and resins. This is the mucous forming part of milk and that contains antigens. Allergies are more apt to trigger sinus and ear infections, congestive mucous, runny nose, or skin rashes. Human babies do not have four stomachs, four legs or horns. Cow's milk is species specific. Milk is the number one offender worldwide, when it comes to food allergies, intolerance or sensitivity.
Q: I'm lactose intolerant and have been told to avoid whey. Why can I drink your whey-based products?
A: That is because sweet whey is 70% lactose, but when whey is concentrated, much of the sugar is washed out, leaving the most complete protein known. We replace much of the lactose with more complex
carbohydrates. Lactose intolerance sneaks up gradually as we age. The problem gets worse every year until intake of lactose is reduced. The Lactose is reduced 70% in Sammi's Best™ Whey & Rice and live cultures are added which help in negating the remaining Lactose. Except in rare cases where a person is 100% lactose intolerant our whey product is actually a little easier to digest for more people worldwide than our soy products and it tastes more like fresh milk.
Q: What about residual contaminants? What is a purity factor?
A: A microbial analysis is done to establish how clean a certain product is regarding contaminants and residual foreign material. For example the number of somatic cells (pus cells) per milliliter, allowed by US dairy industry purity standards for Grade A milk, equates to more pus per glass than most people would probably ignore if they were aware. Our whey product is dairy based, but has an outstanding purity factor, comparable in fact with our soy based products. This is because blood, pus, antibiotics, manure, etc., must
be cleaned out before cheese is made and the whey separated. Cheese makers cannot afford to throw away tons of milk and they can't make cheese or whey if the milk isn't clean. It is not that purity standards are not strictly enforced, they usually are, but how strict are the standards?
Q: I've read where homogenized milk has been linked with heart disease, diabetes and cancer. What do you think?
A: Many doctors, researchers and other health professionals believe milk is very unhealthy. Lengthy research indicates heart and artery problems occur far more often in countries that homogenize milk than in countries that do not, regardless of fat intake. There are many independent studies in medical archives authored by doctors and researchers all over the world dealing with milk. We haven't seen one that says milk is good for people. There also appears to be evidence that giving milk to babies greatly increases the risk of diabetes. Some doctors feel there is a link between milk and certain types of cancer. Consumers remain unaware, unconcerned, and even blissful when it comes to milk. How could it be unhealthy when so many famous athletes are posing with milk mustaches? Health issues about processing are avoided. The use of growth hormones and widespread antibiotics is also a problem that's being swept under the rug.
Q: Can I use BestLife products for cooking and baking in my favorite recipes?
A: Yes, actually baked goods last longer and stay fresher. Whey can be used to make great bread. You will find our products work great in your favorite soups, sauces, gravies and chowders. Because there is no animal fat or insoluble casein, they won't curdle, scorch as easy or skim over when gravy sits. This is the same reason you can't make instant puddings or Elmer's glue.
Q: How can you claim your coffee creamer to be healthy when it contains corn syrup solids?
A: The reality is, after decades of independent R&D we have never found or been given a legitimate reason the Evaporated Low DE Corn Syrup Solids we use are unhealthy. Used as carrier for our very healthful Coconut Oil, we find better consistency, flavor profile and availability than with any other viable option. We would like to know of a healthier replacement to consider with the same functionality and cost benefits. Don't make a common mistake of confusing Corn Syrup Solids with High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS). They are vastly different, not even in the same ingredient category. HFCS is a highly refined sweetener that does not occur in nature. It has a high glycemic index and Dextrose Equivalent (DE). Dextrose Equivalent is how sweetness is measured or compared in the food industry. For example Dextrose is 100, table sugar (Sucrose) is 110 DE meaning 110% as sweet as Dextrose. Corn Syrup Solids is an all natural time release complex carbohydrate, much like Rice Syrup Solids, Molasses or Sorghum. The Corn Syrup Solids we use has a DE of 20 to 24.
Our history demonstrates our commitment to health and education. BLI was likely the very first food company in the US to list Trans Fats on labels (1997). The FDA made it mandatory in 2008 and made us change all our labels, from Zero to 0 g. in 2009. Long before there was general consumer awareness we worked with suppliers in England, Ireland and the US developing a healthy proprietary Non-Hydrogenated vegetable oil for use in our products and paid more to get it, and still do. BestLife International, was one of first US companies to publicly oppose Genetically Modified Organisms and offer products that met stricter European standards when only a small fraction of the US public had ever heard of GMO (Round Up ready) plants. In fact if it was not for numerous countries and a few small companies like BLI rejecting GMO and paying the price 20 years ago, it is doubtful US consumers would have the option of a Non-GMO ingredient choice today.
For over 20 years the makers of Sammi's Best have said NO to GMO, NO to Hydrogenated Oils, NO to Aspartame, NO to Sucralose, NO to HFCS and NO to many common ingredients or foods based on nutritional integrity, not rumors, fads, or inaccurate information. We select ingredients for quality, purity, nutrition and choose organic sources when it makes a difference and for better growing practices. For sweeteners, we use Non-GMO Organic Evaporated Cane Juice or natural herbs. We take your health, confidence & enjoyment of our products seriously, we are glad you do too.