natural sweeteners

    ARTIFICIAL SWEETENERS VS NATURAL SWEETENERS

    ARTIFICIAL SWEETENERS VS NATURAL SWEETENERS 1024 1024 Delphine Remy | Holistic Nutrition & Eating Psychology Coach

    Artificial Sweeteners vs Natural Sweeteners. Yes, it appears it’s time for another sugar blog. Quick reminder (and I will go into the details below) but sugar is not good for you. The average American diet, for example, is taking in nearly 400 calories of sugar a day! The side effects of a high sugar diet or high sugar intake includes diabetes, tooth decay, obesity, heart disease, cancer — not to mention poor cognitive function. And I hate to be the bearer of bad news — but artificial sweeteners like Sweet n Low — are not any better for you.

    According to the FDA, artificial sweeteners such as aspartame, sucralose and saccharin are technically “safe” but have come into increased scrutiny due to their increasing list of side effects. Side effects of artificial sweeteners include headaches, migraines, shrunken thymus glands, liver impairment, kidney failure and mood disorders. I’m really not to sure what aspect of that sounds “safe” but the reality is sugar is a very real issue that is turning into a very real epidemic.

    High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) is not a natural sweetener
    Organizations such as the National Corn Growers Association have successfully infiltrated the market with a sweetener made from corn starch called High Fructose Corn Syrup. This sweetener has made its way into every processed food and sweetened drink and contains dangerous chemicals and contaminants such as mercury.

    And to make matters worse — the chemical process used to manufacture HFCS separates the naturally bonded glucose and fructose giving fructose direct access to the liver, turning into fat called lipogenesis. Lipogenesis is what leads to a fatty liver – which in turn develops into diabetes — which affects some 90 million Americans.  Diabetes is the most common disease in America today.  

    The good news is there are such thing as natural sweeteners that are healthy and tasty alternatives to refined sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and artificial sweeteners.

    natural sweetener

    Raw Honey. Raw honey is a true superfood and one of my go-to natural sweeteners. The darker the honey, the richer the flavor and the greater the health benefits. Raw honey, not pasteurized honey, is packed with enzymes, antioxidants, iron, zinc, potassium, calcium, phosphorous, vitamin B6, riboflavin and niacin. These nutrients are essential in neutralizing free radicals while promoting the growth of healthy bacteria in the digestive system. Visit your local farmer’s market or beekeeper to purchase raw (unpasteurized) honey.

    Stevia. Stevia is an ideal natural sweetener, 200 times sweeter than sugar, that has been used for hundreds of years in South America to prompt weight loss and support healthy blood sugar levels. Stevioside extract is pulled from the Stevia leaves and available for purchase in specialty grocery stores in the form of liquid drops, packets or tablets.

    Dates. Dates are loaded with the good stuff, and potassium, copper, iron, manganese, magnesium and vitamin B6 are on that list. Dates are easy to digest and help metabolize proteins, fats and carbohydrates. Dates have also been known to reduce LDL cholesterol in the blood and reduce the risk of heart disease.

    Coconut Sugar. Most people are aware of the benefits of coconut oil and coconut milk, not to mention fresh coconut but now, more and more people are using coconut sugar as their preferred natural sweetener of choice because of its low glycemic load and rich mineral content.

    Coconut sugar is packed with polyphenols, iron, zinc, calcium, potassium, antioxidants, phosphorous and other phytonutrients. Coconut sugar is readily available and reasonably priced. 

    Maple Syrup. Maple syrup is an exceptional source of manganese, calcium, potassium, zinc and antioxidants which reduce oxidative damage. When selecting a maple syrup, select a darker, Grade B maple syrup. The darker syrups contain more beneficial antioxidants than the lighter syrups.

    natural sweeteners

    Little memories from Mont Tremblant ski station in Canada! They were making maple syrup lollies, they were divine. Try it on the cold days!

    Blackstrap Molasses. Organic blackstrap molasses is Maple Syrup’s little brother. The benefits are nearly the same in that Molasses is also an exceptional source of copper, calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, selenium and vitamin B6. Sugarcane and beet molasses have the highest phenolic content and antioxidant qualities.

    Balsamic Glaze. Balsamic vinegar is sweet and tangy, rich in antioxidants that destroy free radical and can be virtually used in any dish. Balsamic vinegar (without added sugar of course) is one of my favorite secret ingredients.

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