6 healthy and affordable white sugar substitutes
A study on healthy white sugar substitutes highlights 6 less harmful alternatives on the market.
- Agave nectar (60 calories = 1 tablespoon) – Agave is a plant from the lily family, although it was considered to belong to the cactus family due to the appearance of the plant. This plant originates from the desert, so it is resistant to high temperatures and high temperatures. Homeland of agave is Mexico. In 1561 this plant arrived in Europe and became widespread throughout the Mediterranean. Agave nectar contains 50% more calories than white sugar but is 50% sweeter so it is used in smaller quantities. About 90% of agave nectar is fructose, so frequent use is not recommended (a diet full of fructose in a short time can cause insulin resistance). Agave nectar is best used when baking.
- Maple syrup (52 calories = 1 tablespoon) – all maples contain sweet juice. To obtain the syrup, a special maple (Acer saccharum) is used, which contains the most sugar. Trees in the incised places release juice that drips into the pot through grooves in drops (at a time when there is still snow in the maple forest and temperatures fluctuate from low at night to relatively high during the day). The syrup is boiled to the density of rare honey once the bowls are filled. Maple syrup is a pure natural product without additives (preservatives). It can be stored for a long time. An uncooled container with maple syrup can stand in an uncooled space for a year without losing any of its quality. Real maple syrup contains more manganese, riboflavin (vitamin B2), zinc, magnesium, calcium and potassium (unlike maple syrup, which is used for pancakes and other sugars). Real maple syrup can be used for oatmeal, salad dressing, glazes, chocolate toppings, on roasted root vegetables, pancakes and waffles.
- Stevia (0 calories = 1 tablespoon) – Stevia plant is from South America. Due to its sweet taste and healing properties, it is in great demand all over the world. Stevia is a derivative of the leaves of the plant of the same name and a natural sweetener 300 times sweeter than white sugar. It is used in minimal quantities. Stevia is thought to help prevent cancer (according to new research), treat bacterial diseases of the digestive system, regulate overweight, reduce high blood fats and high blood pressure, lower blood sugar and have no effect on insulin ( which is important for diabetics and people who want to lose excess weight). Stevia reduces anemia, slows down osteoporosis, prevents caries and dental plaque, regulates digestion and strengthens immunity. The use of stevia is great (various drinks, various types of baked food, etc.).
- Honey (64 calories = 1 tablespoon) -Honey is a natural product that honey bees get by processing nectar and honeydew in the honey bladder. Bees turn nectar from honey plants, honey dew, and from the surface of leaves and conifer needles into honey. Bees produce honey as food for a long winter period in the same way for 100 million years. Bees visit 50 to 100 flowers during honey collection. The taste, texture and aroma of honey depend on the flower nectar from which honey is obtained (sage, linden, chestnut, clover, heather, acacia, flower mixtures, thyme, sunflower and other plant species). Honey is the most perfect product of nature and rich in glucose (the simplest form of sugar), which is why it is an excellent choice after exercise. Processed honey is just as nutritious as raw honey. Moreover, heated and filtered honey also contains more antioxidants. Honey is an easily digestible food that instantly restores lost energy. During long-term use, it ensures physical endurance and mental stability. Honey can be added to cakes and beverages. Salad dressings, marinades, dips, pancake coating.
- Molasses (58 calories = 1 tablespoon) – thick, sweet dark brown or dark green syrup is formed as a residue after crystallization in the process of sugar production. One tablespoon of molasses provides 10% of the daily recommended amount of copper, iron, magnesium, calcium and potassium. Red meat is often mentioned as a major source of iron. Molasses has a much higher percentage of iron that is more easily absorbed. For the same amount of iron, it is necessary to enter the body much less calories. Magnesium and calcium provide energy throughout the day. Light variants of molasses contain fewer nutrients and more sugar. The intense flavor of molasses best suits dishes like baked beans, fruit shakes, marinades, cakes and cookies.
- Brown sugar (52 calories = 1 tablespoon) – brown rice is unrefined so it is healthier than white rice. Brown sugar is unrefined but healthier than white sugar because it contains molasses – so it should be used in small quantities to strengthen the taste, glaze and add moisture when baking.