There are many reasons why refined sugars (white granulated sugar, brown sugar, confectionery powdered sugar, aspartame) are harmful for you. It tends to promote the growth of disease-causing bacteria and is void of nutritional value. It actually robs your body of valuable nutrients to even metabolize it. Researchers have found that refined sugar ruins your health in many other ways as well:
* can decrease growth hormone (the key to staying youthful and lean)
* feeds cancer
* increases cholesterol
* can weaken eyesight
* can cause drowsiness and decreased activity in children
* can interfere with the absorption of protein
* causes food allergies
* contributes to diabetes
* can contribute to eczema in children
* can cause cardiovascular disease
* can impair the structure of DNA
* can cause hyperactivity, anxiety, difficulty concentrating, and crankiness in children
* greatly assists the uncontrolled growth of Candida Albicans (yeast infections)
* contributes to osteoporosis
With so many reasons why sugar is bad for us, is there any reason as to why we might need it? The only "good" thing about sugar is that it tastes good and makes us temporarily feel good. Below is a list of healthier sugar substitutes that I use in all of my cooking and baking! There may be other healthy alternatives, but these are the particular ones that I use on a regular basis.
Sucanat Sugar is a dried granule sweetener made from the juice of the sugar cane. The juice is extracted then the moisture is evaporated off. It has a rich molasses flavor, making it a great substitute for refined brown sugar. Substitute one for one in any recipe! You can find this in almost any organic area of grocery stores, and I believe even Costco sells it in larger quantities.
Honey Granules is a much milder version of Sucanat. In the processing, a mild honey is added to the juice of the sugar cane before the moisture is evaporated off. This too, is a dried granule. It has a sweet flavor, making it a great substitute for refined white sugar. There is no alteration in flavor! Substitute one for one in any recipe! I have had a hard time finding this in local stores. I purchasing mine online through a company called Bread Beckers.
Pure Honey is a sugar, but is natural and unrefined. It contains a lot of nutrients and enzymes that have many beneficial attributes. It can be substituted one for one in recipes such as bread dough, where you are using only a small amount of sugar in proportion to flour. In recipes where large amounts of sugar are called for in proportion to flour, such as cakes, cookies, and brownies, you can substitute 1/4-1/2 the honey for the sugar called for. Use Tupelo, Sage, or Clover honey for a mild flavor in your breads, pies, cakes and icings. The darker the honey, the stronger the flavor. I buy raw, unpasteurized, pure honey from Bread Beckers. Honey is our only true natural sweetener, therefore it is always my first choice when substituting.