Golden milk is a trendy new (old) drink that is working its way to hipster coffee shops and juice bars everywhere. Thanks to celebrity endorsements and a continuous barrage of superfood nonsense in the health media, Golden Milk joins the likes of miracle beverages such as apple cider vinegar, black soybean tea, soylent and bulletproof coffee. Recently I was asked about the merits of drinking golden milk. My response is below.
Golden Milk – Dear Davey H
Recently, Toni asked,
Dear Davey H
I’ve been reading about some superfood cocktail that Gwyneth Paltrow loves called Golden Milk. Recently you did an analysis of black soybean tea on your blog. Can you give golden milk the same treatment?
Golden Milk – Sure Toni
If you can’t trust Gwyneth Paltrow about superfoods, who can you trust? After all, she plays the trusted assistant to your namesake, Tony Stark, also known as Ironman. As someone with intimate knowledge of superheroes, she must know a thing or two about superfoods. And since you’ve inadvertently brought me to one of my favorite subjects, superheroes, let’s first examine golden milk’s origin story.
Golden Milk Origin Story
What is golden milk? Golden milk is the rough English translation of the ancient Hindi drink, haldi ka doodh or just haldi doodh. This ancient Indian beverage is a concoction of various “superfoods” that many allege to have amazing powers. People with Karma Sense, however, know that there are no superfoods and that acting as if there were, can actually be dangerous. It’s never a great plan to obsess over some kind of food or nutrient at the expense of the fabulous selection of other amazing foods. Furthermore, you can have too much of a good thing.
Outside magazine created a great chart about superfoods. Here it is.
Recipes for golden milk vary but in general, the ingredients include some combination of:
- Coconut milk or milk of your choice
- Sweetener, often honey
- Black pepper
- Coconut oil or ghee
Combine them and you get something that looks kind of like this.
Here’s a link to as good a recipe for golden milk as any.
It’s the turmeric that gives golden milk it’s golden color. Turmeric is a spice that’s common in Indian foods (shout out to my homies in Edison, NJ) and has a bright yellow mustard color. In fact, most yellow mustards include turmeric in the ingredients.
Golden Milk – The Hype
Each of the ingredients in golden milk followed its own hype cycle of amazing benefits. Most of them are exaggerations. Now it’s Turmeric’s turn. But, turmeric is something that may actually live up to the hype. It includes a compound called curcumin and curcumin has some astonishing evidence backed properties. It’s anti-inflammatory and an antioxidant. Furthermore, research shows turmeric fights dementia, cancer, heart disease, arthritis and depression.
The problem with turmeric, in my opinion, is that it tastes like ass. I like curry and Indian food but turmeric on its own leaves a gross taste in my mouth. Also, people who eat too much sometimes get nauseous and even develop an irregular heart beat. And one more minor issue, if you ever get turmeric on your clothing, just be resigned to the fact that those clothes now have yellow spots forever.
Golden Milk – What Would Davey H Do?
Well, usually I think Gwyneth Paltrow should stick to superheroes and stay away from superfoods and other health topics. After all, she’s the one who recommends bee-sting therapy to fight inflammation or steaming ones vagina to clean the uterus. But, in this case, she’s on to something. Golden milk sounds like a delicious and mostly healthful way to consume turmeric. But, keep in mind, between the kind of milk you use, and the added fat and sugar, it can pack a caloric punch of a couple hundred calories per cup. With that and the potential side effects of too much turmeric, I woudn’t drink it all day everyday.
By the way, if you’re worried about overdosing on turmeric, the studies that looked at negative side effects were based on consuming 3000 mg or 1.5 teaspoons a day. A cup of golden milk has about a quarter teaspoon. So, a cup or two a day for a snack, sounds like Karma Sense to me.
Thanks, Tony. You see, I don’t puke on every cockamamie idea from the Healthy Lifestyle Militia.
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