Wow! Thanks for all of the information everyone. I also used to use agave nectar, for my smoothies mostly. I don't use to much honey, just a little to go into 2 or 3 cups of hot tea daily and once in a while when I cook a chinese dish, like the orange chicken I made last night.
I agree with the others, it was easier for me to get used to life without grains before I tried to stomp out my sugar habit. Agave nectar is usually made the same way as high fructose corn syrup. They try to make it sound like it is just concentrated agave juice, but agave juice is very expensive, so they use a heat and chemical process to convert the starches in the stalk of the plants into a sugary syrup. It is also mainly fructose, as HoundLover said, and will really spike your insulin. This said by a former agave nectar addict. Honey is ok in moderation, but sugars tend to slow my weight loss. I haven't tried Xylitol, but I've had good luck with stevia as a substitute sweetener. Some brands can be bitter, but if you shop around you can usually find a tasty one. The trick is to use as little sweetener as possible and wean yourself off of sweet flavors and readjust your palate. It took me a few months, but now fruit tastes like desserts used to, and I had a serious sweet tooth. And getting off sugar has done wonders for my energy levels. I don't plan on ever fully cutting out dark chocolate (the horror!), but I do try to keep it in moderation.
I used agave nectar until I learned that it is mostly fructose, very bad for you. I like honey in tiny amounts, but if I want to sweeten something in baking I use Xylitol, a sugar alcohol that has big benefits for dental health in addition to being granular and looking and acting very much like sugar. The good kind is made from birch bark. It is very low on the glycemic index. Birgit
I agree that giving up grain by itself is a significant step. If you want to continue to use honey for now you may want to have it with some protein and fat, like a cup of full-fat yogurt which may cause less of a blood sugar spike and insulin spike. You can also try to replace part of the honey with Xylitol, a sugar alcohol with lower glycemic index that has beneficial effects on dental health. Birgit
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Okay, ladies, thanks! I've been having about 2 - 3 Tablespoons per day. It's what I put in my tea and if I'm cooking something that calls for sugar then I use honey instead. I thought I read somewhere that it was okay in moderation but it may not have been from Sisson's blog and could have been from Tosca Reno's Eating Clean book. I just don't remember. For now, I'm not going to change what I'm doing because eliminating grains is a big enough step and it's not like I eat a cup of honey a day, . But, eliminating all sugar (the only other one is the cane sugar? in the Dark Chocolate Almond Milk that I occasionally drink or the sweetener? in the Hard Apple Cider that I LOVE!) is going to be next, I think.
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