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Healthy Meals

The four classes of simple sugars that are considered harmful to health are fructose, malts, sucrose and honey. Let’s look at four sugar alternatives that are better for you than sugar and lower on the glycemic index scale. They offer more in the way of nutrition and will give you the sweet taste you are looking for. These alternatives are listed in order of healthiest first.

1. Stevia – this is the best alternative to sugar. It is 200-300 times sweeter than refined table sugar, however, stevia is not sugar. Stevia is an herb. It has a glycemic index of less than one and will not feed candida or cause other health problems that are associated with refined sugar consumption.

2. Agave Nectar – derived from the Blue Agave plant, and has a glycemic index of between 15 and 30. It is extracted and purified from the sap of the agave plant and then broken down with natural enzymes.

3. Raw Honey – used in moderation, honey is a healthy alternative to refined sugar. It is considered a superfood because of the vitamin, mineral, antioxidant and phytonutrient content it possess in its raw, unprocessed state. It has a glycemic index of about 30 and is used as a remedy for many health ailments by alternative health care providers. Use caution though when choosing honey. It is not all created equal. Once it is processed and refined, it loses all of its beneficial properties.

4. Maple Syrup – While the choices listed above are better ones, maple syrup is still a more nutritious choice than refined white sugar or high fructose corn syrup. It has a glycemic index of 54 and should be used in moderation. It is derived from the sap of the maple tree making it a processed food.