What is the healthiest sugar substitute you can use?

Stevia is a very popular low calorie sweetener. Erythritol is another low-calorie sweetener. Xylitol is a sugar alcohol with a sweetness similar to sugar. Yacon syrup is another unique sweetener.

Stevia in packs, drops or in the form of a plant is a favorite of dieticians. Sugar substitutes can make you want more sweet and sugary foods. Studies link artificial sweeteners, considered safe in moderation, to an increased risk of glucose intolerance, a precursor to prediabetes and diabetes. The good news is that natural sweeteners provide a few more nutrients than table sugar.

The bad news? All are still forms of sugar and are high in calories, so don't use more than 1 or 2 teaspoons a day, Taylor says. Food isn't the only place where added sugar hides. Beverages are the main source of added sugar in the category, accounting for nearly half of the total added sugar consumed by Americans. Limiting sugar-sweetened beverages is crucial to reducing the risk of obesity, which is a risk factor for at least 12 different types of cancer.

Meanwhile, there is no strong evidence that diet drinks are a cause of cancer in humans. The best plan is to completely break up with added and artificial sugar. This 12-step guide will help you do just that. When you need a little sweetness, check out this list, choose the healthiest sugar substitute for the given situation and use the least amount possible.

Maple syrup is thermostable, so you can use it in virtually any application. Add it to marinades, glazes or sauces and use it for baking. Stevia, one of Slayton's favorite sugar alternatives, is derived from the plant of the same name. It essentially has a glycemic index of zero and also doesn't contain fructose.

Stevia can be used instead of table sugar in your favorite foods and beverages, such as coffees and milkshakes. Coconut sugar is often used as a substitute in baking. Add it to the muffins right now. Like xylitol, erythritol is a sugar alcohol, but it contains even fewer calories and is often used as a substitute for sugar in the ketogenic diet.

However, despite its low calorie content, a recent study involving university students linked blood erythritol levels to increased fat mass and weight gain. You can pour agave syrup into pancakes or use it in baked goods or cocktails, or even in tea and coffee. However, it's definitely super sweet and has a ton of sugar. Think high-fructose corn syrup, Slayton says.

It will only make you hungrier. Both stevia and monk fruit sweetener are completely natural. They are not nutritious and contain no calories, do not contain sugar, carbohydrates or artificial ingredients. They have a glycemic index (GI) of zero, meaning they don't raise glucose levels, which is good news for people with type 2 diabetes.

They're safe, even for children and pregnant mothers, and are ideal options for those following low-carb weight-loss diets, such as ketogenic and paleo. All medical experts agree that it is healthier to drink black coffee than to add sugar or sweetener, and that water is a healthier beverage than soft drinks, whether the soda is sweetened with sugar or another sweetener. Date sugar (made from dried dates) and coconut sugar are often used interchangeably in recipes because they provide a similar flavor. Basically, artificial sweeteners are synthetic substitutes for sugar, which can be derived from substances of natural origin, such as herbs or sugar itself.

Depending on the substitute you use, it could increase your blood sugar level and cause a sharp drop, or it could cause you to want more sugar. Put coconut sugar and molasses in a food processor and beat until you get the consistency of commercial brown sugar. Examples of sugar alcohols include xylitol, erythritol, maltitol, mannitol, sorbitol, and other sugar alcohols that end in -itol. Stevia doesn't affect blood sugar the same way table sugar does, and one study showed that it may even help lower blood pressure.

Many sugar alcohols are calorie-free sweeteners, while others contain about half the calories of regular sugar. In terms of natural sugar substitutes, they can increase blood sugar depending on their fructose content and glycemic index. So what is a good natural sweetener and the best alternative to sugar then? Fortunately, there are many sugar substitutes that are healthy and tasty alternatives to refined sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, and artificial sweeteners. You can even make an alternative to brown sugar by adding two tablespoons of molasses for every ½ cup of coconut sugar a recipe calls for.

Including more natural sweeteners in your daily diet isn't difficult if you stop consuming refined table sugar entirely and use healthier sugar substitutes instead. . .

Shelley Musselman
Shelley Musselman

Avid social media fan. Award-winning coffee specialist. Subtly charming coffee enthusiast. Total bacon fan. Total pizza guru.

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