Sugar has become one of the most common substances in our diets. The average American consumes about 22 teaspoons (or 100 grams) of sugar every day. This is more than three times the recommended intake, and it’s hidden in many processed foods. Sugar is not good for you; it can lead to weight gain, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, liver damage, and cavities. However, there are some healthy alternatives that you can use if you want to get your favorite beverages or desserts without all the extra calories!
Monk fruit is a small, green fruit grown in Southeast Asia. The key component of monk fruit is known as ‘mogrosides,’ and it has been used for centuries to sweeten food and drinks naturally. It comes in both powder and liquid form, so you can easily add it to your favorite beverages or use it as a replacement for sugar when making foods such as brownies, cookies, or cakes! The best place to purchase this sweetener is on Amazon!
Stevia is another natural sweetener that can replace sugar. It comes from the Stevia rebaudiana plant, which is native to South America. It’s low in calories and doesn’t raise blood glucose levels, making it a good choice for people with diabetes or those on strict diets! Consuming too much stevia can have a strange effect on your body, so start off by using just one packet every time you bake or cook something sweet! You can find the liquid and powdered form of stevia at most grocery stores but buy the packets online if you want to save money.
This type of sugar has become popular recently because it contains nutrients like magnesium, potassium, iron, antioxidants, and fiber. The product comes from coconut palm sap, which is heated until it turns into a syrup and then granulated to make the sugar we all know. Coconut sugar has a lower glycemic index than regular sugar, so it’s an excellent choice for those who have diabetes!
This sugar alternative is gaining popularity because it’s low in calories and doesn’t affect blood glucose levels. Like monk fruit, allulose comes from sweeteners found in fruits and vegetables naturally. This type of sugar is 90% absorbed by the body because it passes through your gut undigested. When you consume regular sugar, small amounts are not digested but are fermented by bacteria in your colon to produce gas that causes bloating, pain, or discomfort.
If you need to bake with sugar but want to avoid adding another type of sugar, xylitol is your best alternative. It has the same sweetness as sugar and doesn’t add unnecessary calories. Xylitol is a naturally occurring sweetener found in many fruits and vegetables like raspberries and cauliflower. Unlike some other natural replacements, you can find xylitol at most grocery stores at low prices! Substitute your regular baking recipe by using half of the amount of xylitol and half the amount of regular white sugar. Your baked goods will taste just like they would if you used regular sugar without any extra guilt!
Honey is a very popular choice for cooking and baking because you can use it to sweeten just about anything. The health benefits of honey have been known since ancient times, so many people regularly use this type of sugar. It’s more processed than some other natural alternatives. Still, it contains antioxidants that prevent cell damage, antibacterial properties that fight off illness, vitamins and minerals that are great for improving your immune system and energy levels, plus enzymes that assist in the digestion process. You can also purchase raw honey if you are trying to avoid processed food products!
Molasses comes from sugarcane during the first boiling of sugar cane juice. This type of sugar is very thick and viscous, making it perfect for baking cookies or bread! It’s also high in potassium, calcium, and iron plus B vitamins which help to improve your metabolism. Molasses gives you energy without any unnecessary ingredients like artificial sugars, so it’s a great choice if you want something healthier than white sugar but don’t want to spend lots of money on sweeteners made from fruits or vegetables that are difficult to find at stores.
This type of sugar alternative comes from cow milk but is very sweet, so you only need to use small amounts while baking or cooking your favorite sugary treats! Tagatose is easy to find at most stores. It’s naturally high in protein and calcium and helps the body absorb minerals like magnesium and zinc. It’s low on the Glycemic Index, which means that it doesn’t affect your blood sugar levels as much as regular sugar does. Make sure only to use the right amounts when baking with it, so you don’t inadvertently add more calories you were trying to avoid!
Agave nectar is a type of syrup that comes from the Agave plant. Agave nectar is high in minerals like magnesium, potassium, calcium, and iron, plus vitamins A, C, and E, great for improving your immune system. This type of sweetener also contains amino acids that help reduce inflammation in your body and antioxidants that fight off free radicals that cause cancer or cell damage! It’s not recommended for people with diabetes because it has almost the same Glycemic Index as regular sugar. You should only use this one if you are trying to cut back on calories but keep your favorite desserts in your diet.
Sucralose is 600 times sweeter than regular sugar, so you only need to use small amounts when baking. This type of alternative doesn’t add the calories found in regular sugars, making it a good choice for people watching their weight or even diabetics who can’t have large amounts of sugar in their diet. Sucralose comes from sugar, but the molecule is altered, so it doesn’t add additional calories when consumed. Some studies have even shown that sucralose can help you lose weight by reducing appetite and increasing metabolism!
Maple syrup has become one of the healthiest sugar alternatives because it contains antioxidants and nutrients like manganese, zinc, iron, calcium, magnesium, and potassium. The best thing about maple syrup is that you can purchase it at your local grocery store or order online! It’s perfect for making desserts like cookies because the flavor will still be delicious but healthier than ever before! Just remember to use this substitute sparingly!
Don’t Overdo It!
If you’re using any of these healthy alternatives to replace regular sugar, keep in mind that you should still partake in moderation. If you eat too much of any of these replacements or if you consume them frequently without giving your body time to recover, you could start feeling adverse effects. These include digestive issues, low energy levels, or difficulty sleeping, so make sure to keep these problems in mind before replacing all of the sugar in your house with healthier alternatives!
Sugar is an essential ingredient in many of our favorite beverages and desserts, but it can be harmful to our bodies when consumed too frequently. Luckily, there are healthier alternatives that you can use in place of regular sugar because they have fewer calories or don’t spike your blood glucose levels! You may want to try out several different substitutes before deciding which one tastes best for the food you’re making, so get cooking and give these substitutes a shot!