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24
OCT

A Guide to Natural Sweeteners

Filed Under: Health Foods,Nutrition at 8:00 am | By: Jessica Justh, Senior Editor
Natural Sweeteners

 

Most of us know that sugar is bad for us, but sometimes we just can’t help but succumb to our sweet tooth. Not only is it OK to treat yourself every now and then, you can still make smart choices when doing so. Check out the following list for some natural sugar alternatives, as well as a few ingredients you should always try to avoid.

Look For:

Maple Syrup – This natural sweetener is made using a two-step process. While here are several grades commonly found in most food stores, Grade B is the darkest and has the strongest maple flavor.

Raw, Local Honey – Packed with amazing health benefits, this natural sweetener easily trumps refined table sugar. Plus, honey has immune strengthening properties, as well!

Stevia  – A plant-derived herb that has been used around the world for thousands of years. Keep in mind that stevia is 30 times sweeter than sugar, so tread lightly when substituting in baked goods.

Black Strap Molasses – A strong flavored, sugarcane sweetener full of vitamins and minerals. Use a small amount of black strap molasses when replacing with sugar in recipes.

Xylitiol/ ErythritolThese are common sugar alcohols that have few calories and little aftertaste. Xylitol and Erythritol do not raise blood sugar but may cause digestion issues when over consumed.

Steer Clear Of:

Stay away from products that contain the ingredients below, and remember that, as always (even when indulging!), moderation is key.

Agave

Refined White Sugar Cane

Aspartame

HFCS

Sucralose




2 Responses to “A Guide to Natural Sweeteners”

  1. Sandra says:

    What is wrong with Agave as a sweetener It is suppose to like honey but more for a low Glycemic sweetener. I use Blue Agave. It is on your list for not using it. I have tried the Stevia but I do not like because it makes me thristy, and my mouth dry. I want to know because in our family we have 3 dibetics. I am not but my husband, mother in law, Sister in Law are.

  2. Jessica Justh, Senior Editor says:

    It turns out that although agave doesn’t contain a lot of glucose, it contains more fructose than any other common sweetener, including high-fructose corn syrup. Initially, we thought moderate amounts of fructose weren’t unhealthy, but now we know better.Hope this helps!

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