Sugar is a sociopath of foods that taste sweet but are actually a poison. It may cause many health problems such as heart disease, skin problems, mood disorders and many more. But you may eliminate all these risk factor by doing one simple change, switch to natural sweeteners.
Do you know, according to a survey it was found that sugar is right times addictive as cocaine? which is banned in many countries. In a study done on rats, rats found sugar more tantalizing than cocaine.
Sugar doesn’t only cause you health problem but also adds on more fat. If you want to lose weight, first you have to cut down on sugar by which you have to put the minimum amount of effort and you get the maximum results.
I’m not asking you to compromise on your sweet tooth, all you have to do is replace your refine sugar with natural sweeteners, which
- provides health benefits,
- serve the same purpose
- easily available
- reasonable prices
Keep on reading to find out the best natural sweeteners, their calories and health benefits.
Refined vs natural sugars
Refined sugar is made after lots of chemical processing that don’t have any national values but empty calories which increase body fat, various health problems like wrinkles, acne, dark circles, risk of heart disease and type II diabetes.
Whereas natural sugar comes from natural sources like fruits, coconut or organic cane doesn’t harm the body as well as provide nutrition, antioxidants, minerals, vitamins and fibre. Natural sweeteners do not spike the insulin levels and are digested easily.
Why am I craving for sugars?
Sugar is the worst food that everyone consume daily. Most of our packaged food products colas, biscuits, juices or cereals are also loaded with sugar that only provide your non-nutritional calories.
Many of you may not know that a bottle of cola contains 6 teaspoons of sugar! Can you imagine drinking 6 teaspoons of sugar in just one glass? This will eventually make you more fat which is a major cause of many other health problems.
Well, why this happen? Why you crave for sugars? Every time you eat sugars your brain releases feel-good hormone( dopamine). This is the reason you crave for sugars. Here are few more causes of sugar cravings:-
- You are stressed
- Having a period
- You are used to eat sweets
- Co-relating sweets to happy moments of life
But to stay healthy you need to train your mind and decrease sugar cravings. Here are few tips:
- Eat more protein to have a feeling of fullness
- Take a nap
- Educate yourself about health problems caused by sugars
- Satisfy your craving with healthier and natural sweeteners
Health benefits of natural sweeteners
You must have heard natural food items provide more nutrition, finals and vitamins. In the same way, you get health benefits galore just by replacing refund sugars with natural sugars.
- You can shed weight easily
- You become more cheerful and energetic
- Your skin starts glowing
- It helps to relieve severe symptoms of PMS, infertility and menopause
- Increased libido
- Lowers the risk of heart disease and diabetes
So let’s see now what are these top natural sweeteners loaded with similar tastes and health benefits.
1. Coconut sugar
Compared to refined sugars, coconut sugar is least processed and contain more nutrients, mineral and vitamins. It posses healthy fats that help in reducing cholesterol levels and prevents heart disease.
Coconut sugar is derived from coconut palm tree, it contains Inulin which is a type of dietary fibre, that keeps your gut in good shape and prevents colon cancer.
2. Dates sugar
Dates are the sweetest fruit available to us, but they have high content of fibre which helps your body to absorb it sugars more slowly. This is why it is safe for diabetic patients to consume dates in moderation.
Making date sugar is so easy that you can make it at home. It is rich in minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. It can help on lowering cholesterol levels and increase bone density. Date sugar is easily available in general store and on online markets.
How to make date sugar at home?
Making date sugar is very easy, follow the steps to make it at home
- Take date sugar as much quantity you want
- Roast it in a pan
- Then ground it in mixture
- Now strain this to a fine powder
- Your date sugar is ready to use in tea, coffee, juices, and smoothies.
Indians are using mishri for a long time. It exactly tastes like white sugar but has low calories with many health benefits. You will wonder why we ever switched to refined sugar.
Mishri is the non-processed form of normal sugar. It is rich in calcium, magnesium, iron, dietary fibre and antioxidants. It helps in digestion and increased haemoglobin levels. You can use mishri in everything that you are making in your kitchen, be it coffee, tea, milk, juices or desserts.
It is most dietitian’s favorite alternative to added sugars. Stevia based sweeteners are not only herbal but also contains zero calorie load. It is extracted from the leaves of a South American plant known as “Stevia rebaudiana”.
It contains zero calories and is roughly around 300 times more sweeter than traditional refined sugar. The leaves of Stevia in the Raw* are packed with nutrients and phytochemicals. Some studies have also shown its beneficial effect in lowering blood sugar and blood pressure levels.
5. Honey or maple syrup
Honey and maple syrup* are great sugar substitutes as they provide nutrients as compared to table sugar. However the downside to this alternative is that these are still forms of sugar and are high in calories, so use no more than 1 to 2 teaspoons per day.
Dabur Honey* is a natural detox boostercontains some essential minerals and is also a good source of Vitamin E and C. It also contains some antioxidants and some prebiotic which is good for gut flora.
Note: Honey should not be given to infants as it may contain botulism bacteria spores
One of the best natural sweetener is jaggery. Jaggery or jaggery powder has been used in India since its inception and is followed in many places even today.
It contains more nutrients and nutritional values more than any natural sweetener discusses before. It is make from sugarcane juice but is least processed. Here are few health benefits of jaggery :
- Natural blood purifier
- Boosts metabolism
- Helps in liver detoxification
- Prevents constipation
- Improve acne and skin problems
I hope this article was informative. Be sure to sign up for my free newsletter so you can receive new health-related posts where I offer an alternative approach to medical conditions. You can also follow me on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.