One of my favourite food products that will always have a spot on my pantry shelf is milk powder. It is a versatile, easy to carry, easy to prepare, nutrient dense source of protein, carbohydrates (lactose), calcium and vitamin D. If you are watching calories or using it around exercise you can choose the skimmed version or for a higher energy, higher fat option there is a full cream version on the market too.
Adding milk powder to cereals, stews, desserts, smoothies or drinks can up the nutrient content nicely. Why I choose to use it occasionally over regular milk is because it is fortified with vitamin D. Our sunshine vitamin is one that is becoming more commonly found to be deficient in our diets. This can impact a number of issues such as poor bone health, cancer risks, depression and possibly poor weight loss. For more on that read here. Unfortunately in South Africa very few products are fortified with vitamin D, amongst them a few cereals, dairy products, dairy alternatives and other specialty products.
My pick of uses for milk powder is a DIY Chocolate Recovery Drink (recipe here) that provides good quality protein (and a source of the amino acid leucine) and carbohydrate.
1 kg packages ± R 95
Energy 360 (490) kcal
Protein 35 (25) g
Carbohydrate 52 (40) g
Fat 1 (26) g
Calcium 1300 (950) mg
Vitamin D 7.5 (8.0) mcg
Vitamin A 600 (541) mcg
As a recovery drink you would be aiming for 20 g of protein so the skimmed version is a more economical options. For other uses you can use the version that best suits your nutritional goals and requirements.
Keep some in your cupboard (unless you are lactose intolerant) or switch this for your usual recovery shake or supplement. If you are travelling this makes a perfect addition to the suitcase or back pack too!