When you are trying to lose weight or improve your health, one of the most challenging things can be choosing which sweeteners to use. There are so many different kinds of sweeteners today, many claiming to be healthy and diet friendly. Which of these are really safe to use and have a nutritional value that compensates for their sugar content? That’s what we are going to discuss in today’s post.
I will be using data from the 2009 study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association to compare the following list of sweeteners according to their antioxidant value (1):
- Agave Nectar
- Date sugar/syrup
- Maple Syrup
- White table sugar
If you would like additional posts comparing other types of sweeteners, leave me a comment below and I will be happy to oblige.
THE WORST OF THE WORST
So, which sweeteners within this list would you guess have the least amount of nutrition? You might have guessed white table sugar and…you are right…and kinda wrong. White table sugar is at the bottom of the list for nutrition but it is not there all on it’s lonesome. In fact, Agave Nectar is just as nutritionally deficient as white table sugar and joins it at the bottom of the pile.
These two types of sweeteners have little to no antioxidant value and are just..well..sugar. They would not be recommended for anyone trying to improve their health and especially not for anyone trying to lose weight.
THE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD
The next two sweeteners on our list turned out to be honey and maple syrup. These two sweeteners are still pretty much just sugar, however, they do have some antioxidant value and could be used very sparingly for any health conscious individual. Honey, interestingly enough, has slightly more antioxidant power than maple syrup. But, I would not really recommend either of these sweeteners to be used on a regular basis if you are seriously trying to lose weight.
THE BEST OF THE BEST
As you might have now concluded, the sweeteners at the top of our list turned out to be Date sugar/syrup and Molasses. Both of these sweeteners are packed with antioxidant power and are well worth their high sugar content. However, Date sugar specifically was the sweetener determined to be the best for you nutritionally. This is because it is made of just pulverized dates. Therefore, it is a whole food.
These two sweeteners are the only ones I would actually recommend and describe as being good for your health. Date sugar in its powder form is the best thing for baking and date syrup is excellent for sweetening beverages.
Of course, in all honesty, if you are struggling to lose weight, I would recommend reducing your sugar content as much as possible. Even if it is coming from natural, health-promoting sources such as dates, it can impair your weight loss efforts over time and can be hard to use in moderation. If you struggle to stay away from sweeteners because of the kind of beverages you drink, consider switching to a naturally sweet tea such as Red Tea, which is also full of antioxidants itself, and caffeine free. Check out the link below to get the Red Tea Detox program for only $17 for a limited time.
Now I want to hear from you! Do you use any of the sweeteners I listed here? Are you planning on switching up your sweeteners or maybe your tea of choice? If so, please leave a comment below with any questions or comments you have or your experiences in general, positive or negative.
Also, don’t forget to subscribe to The BlueEyed Chef’s email list so you don’t miss out on any future blog posts! Thanks for reading and I’ll catch you in the next post! Here’s to your good health and discovering the happier, healthier you!