You love your sweet treats and can’t live without them, right? You are not alone! There are many people just like you with great affinity for sweets. But as you may know, refined sugar is one of the worst foods you can eat. Solution? Choose a healthy alternative!
But you have to be cautious when deciding which sugar substitute to make a part of your diet. This is because there are many sweeteners that claim to be healthy, but in reality, they may be worse for you than the real thing. Here is the list of the best healthy sweeteners you can and should use.
Stevia sweetener, which is extracted from the stevia plant (exists for over 1,500 years), is one of top choices among Aussies. It is the perfect option for those who are watching their weight or are trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle by avoiding sugar. It is much more sweeter than sugar, but contains virtually no calories. Studies suggest that this sweetener may actually deliver some health benefits such as decrease the blood glucose level and help in weight loss.
Sugar Alcohols such as xylitol are not as sweet as the real sugar and also contain less calories. Xylitol is most commonly used to prevent ear infection in children and in sugar-free gums and candies. However, it not used in ‘sugar-free’ and ‘calorie-free’ foods because it more expensive. When compared to other sugar alcohols, such as malitol, xylitol does not increase blood sugar, and unlike other sugar alcohols, usually it does not produce the bloating or gas.
Honey is packed with natural antioxidants, enzymes, vitamins, amino acids and minerals. But unfortunately, most of the honey available on the market today has been heavily processed. This means that many of the healthful benefits have been reduced and even eliminated, hence such honey does not belong to the best healthy sweeteners list. Of course, not all honey is processed. For example, Manuka honey, which is loaded with healthy properties, offers a wide array of benefits.
Pure Glucose is another safe alternative to sugar. It’s very affordable (around $2 a kilo), but it is also only 70% as sweet as sucrose. This means you will need to use a bit more of it for the same amount of sweetness. Glucose is a pretty safe sweetener that can be used directly by the body.
I did originally want to end my blog post here, but knew there will be ‘why fructose is not on the list’ kind of questions. So, let’s talk a little about fructose. Although claimed to be a healthy alternative to sugar, it is nothing more than a health-harming sweetener. It is in fact, the most toxic natural sugar available. When consumed in larger doses, it is believed to be even more toxic than artificial sweeteners. So, steer away from this so-called healthy sugar substitute and stick with the above suggestions.