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The Truth about ''Natural'' Sweeteners

Does Sugar by Any Other Name Still Taste as Sweet?

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  • "Natural" doesn't necessarily mean healthy...Stevia's long term side effects have yet to be determined. Hey--cocaine is "natural" too...made from the Coco plant. But I'll pass on that too.

    I tried molasses in my coffee...YUCK! Tasted terrible. Not at all sweet.

    I'll stick with sugar. Sugar isn't evil...it's just sugar. Obviously, if you eat ANY "bad" food in huge quantities, it's bad. I don't worry about my sugar consumption anymore than I worry about eating pasta. Food is fuel...eat healthy most of the time, and you'll be fine. - 7/15/2012 11:15:18 AM
  • REFERENCEGIRL73
    Like many other folks, I was surprised that there were no mention of Stevia.

    Nice information on how these different sugars are made, except for honey. Why gloss over how honey is made? I think it is worthy to note that most honey is boiled and filtered, that it takes on various flavors depending on what plants the bees harvested nectar from, and also takes on various pollutants from the environment as well. The reason vegans do not use honey is because bees don't make honey for us, they make it for themselves. Most bee keepers kill their colonies yearly where a colony in nature would live for 5-7 years. - 7/15/2012 11:05:19 AM
  • I notice that you do not mention sorghum molasses made from the sorghum cane. It is similar in consistency to blackstrap molasses but much milder. How does it compare to these other types of sweeteners? - 7/15/2012 9:53:05 AM
  • I agree with Eric, Stevia is the best naturlal sweetener, the only one that doesn't raise the glyemic index. Here are a few extracts from an article I wrote about Stevia.

    Stevia extracts, from the leaf of the Stevia plant, have up to 300 times the sweetness of sugar. This remarkable herb originating from Paraguay is noncaloric. Stevia comes in liquid or powder form. Check the label, as some companies add maltodextrin or other fillers to the powder form, so it is best to find it in its pure form.

    It is a little difficult to give exact equivalents for Stevia as everyone has their personal preference for how sweet they like their food. In general replace 1 cup of sugar with 1 teaspoon liquid or powder Stevia, and 1 teaspoon of sugar with a pinch of Stevia powder or 2 to 4 drops of liquid Stevia. Start with small amounts, if you use too much liquid Stevia it will be overly sweet and have a bitter after taste.

    The goal is to start by replacing sugar with healthier alternatives in order to work towards reducing our intake of sweets over all. Improve your health and make life sweet.

    - 7/15/2012 8:41:06 AM
  • I was expecting the article to have more to say on the topic. The title led me to believe I was going to learn more than just about calories and nutrients. Both are important, but I even from the comments here those are not the main reasons people are choosing the alternatives. - 7/15/2012 8:06:35 AM
  • I have been using coconut sugar, yes it still has same amount of calories but it does have good stuff as well and it is a natural choice. - 7/15/2012 2:34:19 AM
  • Yacon syrup! It's harder to find than agave/honey...but so much better! Far fewer calories - 7/15/2012 2:11:11 AM
  • MS_TERREE
    IS THERE AN ERROR ON THE CHART?
    I don't understand. If the descriptions are correct regarding "RAPADURA" being the least processed, shouldn't the "RAPADURA" have more vitamins and minerals than "EVAPORATED CANE SUGAR?"

    (BTW, I've been using Rapunzul natural sugar for some time now.) - 7/9/2012 11:27:26 AM
  • WOW! Just read the Europe study of stevia mentioned by a member further down this comment string. Eye opening to say the least! - 6/25/2012 2:01:58 PM
  • For what it's worth this article is good but it fails to name Stevia Extract which is another "natural" sweetner. Xylitol as some have commented on is NOT a "natural" sweetner as the article was focused on. - 6/25/2012 1:48:47 PM
  • JUDIBOSS
    You do not mention Xylitol. Rodney Bilton, Professor Emerius in Applied Biochemistry in the School of Pharmacy and Chemical Sciences at Liverpool John Moores University, has recommended this as the safest sugar substitute. - 6/15/2012 3:14:56 AM
  • I just read something about coconut sugar this week. How does that fit into the list of sugars? - 6/14/2012 2:23:37 PM
  • Nice article, love the chart.
    Also learning about how each sugar is produced... good job!

    Would like to have seen something about glycemic index as well as including palm and date sugar.

    Perhaps as a "part deux" to an otherwise informative article?
    Thx for a good read!
    : )
    Mzzchief - 6/12/2012 11:35:16 PM
  • I have been told by doctors NOT to use any artificial sweetners at all. As some other people have said in these posts- they make you want more and more and in the end, they actually make you gain weight. The biggest area the doctors called me out on was dt. pop. They all told me no pop- prefered water. But if I felt I needed a pop to have a regular pop. - 6/12/2012 10:28:55 PM
  • As a kid, many years ago, my parents gave us blackstrap molasses stirred into milk. Guess they knew what kept us healthy! It is surprising how many things people think are new ideas, but my parents did 70 and more years ago for their family. - 6/12/2012 6:09:55 PM

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