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Natural Alternative Sweeteners

Natural Alternative Sweeteners
Today, a trip to the sweetener section of the grocery store can be overwhelming. Every year it seems like the next big natural sugar alternative is released and stocked on the shelves. Here’s a simple guide to explain the major types and have you decide for yourself which one is for you!
 
Agave:
o   A liquid sweetener that comes from the sap of the agave cactus. This syrup tends to be sweeter then sugar and tends to be less viscous. 60 calories per tablespoon vs. 40 calories for the same amount in table sugar.
 
Coconut Sugar:
o   Available in both granulated and liquid forms, this sweetener is made from coconut. This contains inulin that acts as a probiotic and feeds the good bacteria in your gut.  This can be substituted cup for cup in baking.
 
Stevia/Sweetleaf/Truvia:
o   These are made from a herb called Stevia that is 40x more sweeter than table sugar without the calories. They can not be substituted in baking because the taste is much sweeter than regular sugar. It is okay for diabetics to use as it does not raise blood glucose.
 
Monk Fruit:
o   This sweetener comes from a fruit grown in the mountains of China.  It has zero calories and can be up to 300x sweeter than sugar. Use half the amount required in baking. It is okay for diabetics to use as it does not raise blood glucose.
 
Yacon Syrup:
o   This sweetener is extracted from the Yacon Plant. The syrup is dark in color like molasses. It has a low glycemic index and can be used in baking.
 
Comment below which one you prefer! (Michelle Meyer - Dietetic Intern)

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