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Best Natural Sweetners

Sneaky stuff, sugar that is.  It’s in everything these days!  Your healthy non-fat Greek yogurt… watch out, unless it’s plain, that guy probably has close to 18-19g of the white stuff.  Yes, I’m still talking about sugar.  The problem is that can feel  addicting.  When you have one sweet thing, you can find yourself craving just another bite or two, unless that entire half pint of ice cream is gone!  Oops.

The recommended intake per day is no more than 10% of your total daily calories, or about 6 teaspoons for women and 9 for men, the average American is consuming more than double (American Heart Association).

Is sugar really all that bad for me?
Assuming that you can properly regulate insulin and that you have a functioning pancreas, then no, sugar in small quantities is not necessarily bad for you.  Everything in moderation right?

moderationAccording to the National Cancer Institute’s Applied Research Program, most of us are indulging in 17 teaspoons of sugar per day.  A high-sugar diet can put you at risk for type 2 diabetes and cancer, as well as increase your likelihood of becoming overweight.

No body really needs to be on a truly sugar-free diet unless directed by a medical professional, like a doctor.

Is there a more natural sweetener that’s better for me?

You betcha!  If you want to be entirely natural and unprocessed then stick to a wild or raw honey, or pure maple syrup.  Other options have undergone come processing.

Agave syrup: (21 calories per teaspoon)

  • Sugar sources: fructose (aka fruit sugar 55-90%) and glucose
  • Benefit: 40% sweeter than regular sugar, so you can use less, very low on glycemic index.

Honey: (21 calories per teaspoon)

  • Sugar sources: fructose (38%), glucose (30%), sucrose, maltose, trehalse, turanose
  • Benefit: 50% sweeter than regular sugar, so you can use less, contains antioxidants

Maple syrup: (14 calories per teaspoon)

  • Sugar sources: sucrose (about 62%), glucose, and fructose
  • Benefit: 90% sweeter than regular sugar, so you can use WAY less

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