Sugar is demodé, are agave sirup and stevia the sweeteners du jour? Now let’s talk faves; I’ll show you mine, you’ll show me yours! 😉
Beauty isn’t only about products you put on your skin, and so we talk a lot about healthy food here – lately about delicious power of papayas and fantastic health benefits of chocolate – so here’s another healthy favourite of mine: an alternative to sugar that’s even good for our teeth!
SWEET THING, SWEET THING
First off: I don’t have a sweet tooth. Not even close! Tea, coffee, latte go unsweetened. Hell I even skip it in my porridge every morning when I can.
I like to make caramelised onions when cooking, or to add a sweet note when I cook fresh tomatoes, or for asian recipes. I’ve used raw cane sugar for years (it’s vegan, unprocessed, certified bio, and has about the glycemic index of bananas), but looked for a healthy sub to reduce calories – and the risk of cavities, yikessss.
I hate common sweeteners for horrific side effects (no Light products for me, oh no), so I looked at them natural substitutes.
My first takes were Stevia and Rice Sirup, later Agave Sirup. I didn’t like the taste of stevia though – and the fact of just how processed those pills and liquids were. That’s not the raw and original taste of nature.
Rice sirup wasn’t my cup of tea; and agave sirup aka vegan honey, while having a mild and pleasant taste, turned out to be mainly concentrated fructose. Research proves it has no health benefits, rather health risks, and is most certainly NOT diabetic friendly as often advertised!
I looked out for an alternative.
KNOCK ON WOOD
Then Din of EiswuerfelImSchuh, who’s very up-to-date with healthy food news, told me about a xylitol-based sweetener – and I soon had found a favourite!
I’ll make the long story SHORT. Here’s the meat (and as usual, Miss Wiki has got all the facts):
Perk #1: Xylitol is as sweet as sugar. Not sweeter, not less sweet, and has no unpleasant aftertaste.
Perk #2: You can cook with it and bake with it, just like with sugar – replace sugar 1 to 1.
Perk #3: It’s actually GOOD for the TEETH, as it doesn’t break down like sugar, so that the pH stays neutral instead of going acidic, and bacteria have a hard time sticking to your teeth. Research also shows that it can help harden (key word: remineralisation) the tooth enamel. Now, how gorg is that!?
Perk #4: It has about 30-40% less calories than sugar, 100g = 235 kcal. More important than that:
Perk #5: It has a very low glycemic index of about 10 points.
Perk #6: The product I use, is derived from FSC-certified wood in Finland, and is guaranteed GM-free, and the manufacturer focuses on reducing CO2-emissions and the use of water and energy. Green thumbs up!
WORDS OF WARNING:
Xylitol is highly toxic to animals, esp. to dogs.
Check where it comes from – you don’t want GMO corn, right?