A Different Take on Sweet

As a reformed sugar addict I can attest — it’s a difficult habit to break. The average American consumes between two to three pounds of refined sugar a week. There are the obvious sources — sucrose or table sugar — and then there are the sneaky sources — dextrose or corn sugar, which is tucked into everything from bread and cereal to condiments and pasta sauce.

Refined sugar is on the nutritional hit list of those who maintain healthy diets for many reasons. The number one strike against this processed sugar is that it gives insulin levels an unnatural boost. Surges of insulin can have a number of long-term negative effects including a compromised immune system.

I’ve already promoted the wonders of stevia, but for a natural (natural is key) sugar alternative with a less dramatic taste try these sweeteners:

Molasses

They may be slow, but they’re also sweet and nutritious. Molasses is the end product of sugar production and is rich in iron, vitamin B6, potassium, calcium, and magnesium.

Sucanat

A short way to say, SUgar CAne NATural, sucanat is made by crushing the sugar cane, extracting the juice and rapidly evaporating the syrup to create granules.

Brown sugar

This moist sugar variety is perfect for backing, but can also be used in any other sweet situation.

Crystallized Maple Sugar

Maple syrup is basically liquid sugar — crystallization just facilitates its use.

Date Sugar

This “sugar” is made from dehydrated, ground dates. It can be used in place of brown sugar. Note: date sugar will not dissolve in liquids like regular sugar.

 

Thank you for signing up!

Tell us what you think!
If you'd like to comment on this article, become a member of Gaiam Life.
Click here to create your account.