March 08, 2018
You can have sugar, you can’t have sugar. Processed sugar is bad for you. Raw honey is better than processed honey. The amount of information that is sent our ways pertaining to our “sweets” is pretty easy to overload on, so our goal today is to make all of this just a little easier to understand.
As you probably know by now, there are various classification of sugars in our food and drink. Some examples of these are white sugar, brown sugar, raw sugar, processed honey, and raw honey. In addition to these, a quick look at any packaged food can also add sugars such as corn syrup, palm sugar, molasses, and agave.
These sugars, while all named differently, are generally made up of glucose, fructose, and sucrose. What makes each sugar different from the other is the source, flavor profile, and how or if it is processed.
White sugar is what most people have on their table to add to their coffee, tea, or cereal as well as using it to bake with. This generally comes from raw sugarcane or beet. Because it is refined, the moisture, minerals, and compounds in raw sugar are stripped from it. The byproduct of this is what we call molasses.
Brown sugar is not a type of raw sugar, but rather another form of processed, or white, sugar. This is made by adding molasses after the refinement process is complete. The type of brown sugar will dictate just how much molasses has been added.
Raw sugar, as briefly mentioned above, is sugar in its most pure state, without the final refining process taking place.
Syrups are usually made from various plants or fruits. They are processed, then concentrated into syrups.
Honey comes in a couple of different forms, just as sugar. The actual honey is a product of the pollination process of bees collecting the nectar from a variety of flowers. Honey is approximately 17 percent water and has a higher concentration of fructose, which is sweeter than either glucose or sucrose.
What we want to avoid for health reasons is anything processed or refined. Because processed sugar has the moisture removed from it, it generally takes more sugar to make something sweet than it will honey. A refined and processed product more than likely has most of its beneficial nutrients stripped out as well, literally turning them into nothing more than carbs that are going to pack pounds on to that waistline of yours.
Taking all factors into consideration, the “healthiest” sweetener would be either raw sugar or raw honey, with raw honey being the best because it will not only require less to sweeten your food or drink, but is also packed with antioxidants as well as being far lower on the Glycemic Index than white sugar or many of the “syrups” used for sweeteners.
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