A sweet deal for your health: 6 natural alternatives to white sugar

Exploring healthier alternatives provides an opportunity to enjoy the sweetness we crave while adding a nutritional boost to our diets

by

Shireen Shahnas

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Published: Thu 17 Aug 2023, 2:15 PM

People are increasingly looking for healthier alternatives to refined sugar as it has been linked to several health problems, including weight gain, tooth decay, and heart disease.

Here are 6 alternatives you can use instead of white sugar.


1. Honey

Honey is not only a natural sweetener but also rich in antioxidants and potential health benefits. Its distinctive flavour varies depending on the floral sources of the bees. It's essential to choose raw, unfiltered honey for maximum nutritional value.

2. Date paste

Date paste, made by blending dates with water, provides natural sweetness along with fibre and nutrients. It's a versatile alternative that adds depth to recipes like energy bars and smoothies.


3. Maple syrup

Derived from maple trees, pure maple syrup offers a unique, rich flavour. It contains minerals like manganese and zinc and can serve as a delicious topping for pancakes, waffles, and oatmeal.

4. Stevia

Extracted from the leaves of the stevia plant, stevia is intensely sweet with zero calories. It doesn't affect blood sugar levels and is an excellent option for those watching their caloric intake.

5. Coconut sugar

Made from the sap of coconut palm trees, coconut sugar contains small amounts of nutrients like iron, zinc, and potassium. It has a caramel-like flavour and can be used in a 1:1 ratio as a substitute for white sugar in many recipes.

6. Molasses

With a distinctive flavour, molasses is less refined than white sugar and contains minerals like iron and calcium. It's a great addition to recipes where a deep, robust flavour is desired.

As we explore these alternatives, let's remember that moderation is key, and a balanced approach to sweetness can enhance your culinary experiences and overall well-being. Each alternative has its flavour profile and sweetness level. Experiment and adjust quantities to achieve the desired taste in your recipes.

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