Sugar Alternatives – Are They Truly Good For You?

Sugar Alternatives – Are They Truly Good For You?

December 21, 2023Anton Penev

Do you have a sweet tooth and an uncontrollable craving for sugar? Don’t worry – you’re not the only one. Sugar is undoubtedly a controversial ingredient in the modern diet. The natural sugar found in clean, wholesome foods is good for your body and overall well-being, however, processed or added sugar is one of the main culprits of numerous health issues. Giving up the latter is the first step in the journey to good health. Focusing on natural sugar alternatives is a step towards a healthy eating lifestyle. 

In the following article, we’ve gathered valuable information about sugar and its impact on your diet and overall health. We’ll also provide various alternatives which you can easily implement in your diet.

Negative effects of sugar on the body

Sugary drinks, candy, baked goods, flavoured dairy products, and even savoury foods like bread are the main culprits of sugar overconsumption. It is easy to end up with a surplus of sugar without even knowing it. This is a premise of serious health problems or the exacerbation of existing ones such as:

  • Tooth decay and cavities;
  • Obesity and type 2 diabetes;
  • High blood pressure and coronary disease;
  • Mental health changes;
  • Ageing.

Fortunately, there are numerous ways to satisfy your sweet tooth and be healthy.

Types of sugar alternatives

Natural sugar substitutes

Every year, more people become more educated and aware of the negative effects of sugar consumption. Thus, the number of people searching for a healthy solution grows. The good news is there are various natural sugar alternatives that can be easily substituted for your baking and cooking. Check below the top 7 natural substitutes when you want to satisfy your sweet cravings:

  • Raw honey 

What better way to sweeten your life than honey? It the nutritional powerhouse when it comes to sugar alternatives. Raw honey contains royal jelly, beeswax, and propolis which is popular for its anti-cancer properties as well as anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antioxidant effects. Amino acids, enzymes, and micronutrients are also found in raw honey. It is truly a superfood and one of the best natural sweeteners. Remember, the darker the honey, the more robust flavour it has and the greater the nutrition properties, so choose wisely! Who’s up for some pancakes? Yum!

Most people have heard about the benefits of coconut water, coconut milk, coconut flour and fresh coconut. Now, more and more people are using coconut sugar as their natural sweetener of choice because of its light, toffee-like flavour and because it is rich in minerals and amino acids. Coconut sugar is a sweet and healthy sugar alternative, and it can be implemented easily in culinary. You can find this sugar alternative and how to add it to your diet on our website!

Yet another amazing natural sweetener! This sweetener is especially popular in vegan cuisine as a substitute for honey. Dating back to the Aztecs, agave nectar is used as food and remedy. Today, this delicious syrup is mainly produced in Mexico from a Blue Agave cactus plant. It can be used in beverages and various recipes. Agave syrup is a preferred sugar alternative because of its rich flavour and low glycemic index (GI). However, keep in mind that the nectar is sweeter than sugar and has high fructose levels, so always consume with care!

Muscovado is a type of partially refined to unrefined sugar with a robust molasses content and flavour. What happens when you boil down sugarcane or sugar beet juice? You get molasses! It has a strong, full-bodied essence which gives natural caramel colour when baking. Unlike processed sugar, muscovado sugar is rich in vitamins and other micronutrients. It is a healthy alternative that can find a place in various baking recipes. Muscovado sugar can also be used in sauces, marinades and even cocktails. At Smart Organic you can find this sugar alternative as well as many others. 

Besides being incredibly delicious and all-natural, maple syrup contains antioxidants and nutrients like potassium, manganese, and iron. It’s a safe choice for diabetics because of its low glycemic index score and can also reduce inflammation in the body. It is endlessly versatile in being a sugar substitute in baking, savoury dishes, sauces and marinades. Pancakes with berries and maple syrup are a classic, after all. Also, it is a great addition to a delicious vanilla latté!

Dates are rich in fibre, minerals, and vitamins, so using them as a natural sweetener can add more nutritional value to your diet and prevent health issues. Dates can help reduce “bad” cholesterol in the blood and lower the risk of a heart attack. They are easy to acquire, inexpensive, and can be used in various recipes. Blended dates act as a binder for homemade cookies, raw vegan brownies, and are an ideal ingredient for delicious smoothies. Moreover, date syrup can add a tasty caramel flavour to your morning coffee. After all, we all need sweetness in our life, right?

  • Monk fruit

Monk fruit has been a part of traditional Chinese medicine for decades, but it’s use as a natural sweetener is becoming more popular by the hour. Monk fruit extract is 150-250 times sweeter than table sugar and holds zero calories or carbs, which makes it an ideal choice for those who want to lose weight. It can be found in granulated and liquid form, and is used in numerous recipes. You might find that monk fruit is pricier than other sweeteners. This is because of the long and challenging growth and cultivation process. However, if your budget allows it, monk fruit is an excellent sugar substitute, with numerous health benefits. 

Visit our website to browse other products we offer and see our interesting and healthy recipes which include them. You can purchase online easily and if you have any questions – feel free to contact us!

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