If you were asked to identify one weakness where your diet is concerned, what would you say? Numerous individuals, when asked, identified sugar as a problem. It’s tough to avoid sugar completely, even if you don’t particularly have a sweet tooth. These days, it seems that sugar is added to everything from processed foods to sweetened drinks.
Fortunately, including both artificial and natural, there is a vast array of healthy sugar substitutes. By using these, your diet could contain significantly less table sugar. Especially for mature adults, limiting sugar intake can be crucial. Sugar consumption in excessive amounts can lead to the following:
- Heart disease
- Type II diabetes
- Poor cognitive function has also been linked to too much sugar, increasing the risk of dementia and affecting memory.
Your Health and Sugar
Sugar enhances the flavor of food, helps preserve it, and sweetens it. This means it’s hard to resist and/or avoid. But there are clear benefits to a reduced sugar intake. Numerous health conditions have been associated with diets high in sugar including the following:
- High triglyceride levels
- Poor nutrition
- Obesity/weight gain
- Type II diabetes
- Cavities and tooth decay
Understanding Sugar Alternatives
There are various sugar alternatives, so which one is right for you? When it comes to sugar substitutes, they come in four different types:
- Natural sweeteners
- Novel sweeteners
- Sugar alcohols
- Artificial sweeteners
Depending on your goals, there are negatives and positives for each.
An Examination of Sugar Alternatives
- Natural sweeteners – Compared to the taste of table sugar, you may like natural sweeteners more. Refining and processing are still undergone by natural sweeteners, however. Their calorie content can be high. Health problems can be caused by natural sweeteners, as with table sugar. If consumed excessively, poor nutrition, weight gain, and tooth decay may be experienced.
- Novel sweeteners – Though more difficult to categorize, novel sweeteners are derived from highly refined natural sources. Possibly the most researched novel sweetener is Stevia. Health benefits may be provided via this product, but more studies are needed. Benefits can include weight management, assistance with diabetes control, and lowering blood pressure.
- Sugar alcohols – Cavities and/or tooth decay are not caused by sugar alcohols. They can help with diabetes management and weight control, as well. Sugar alcohols are not completely absorbed by the body. Bloating, diarrhea and other digestive problems can be experienced if sugar alcohols are consumed excessively.
- Artificial sweeteners – These intense sweeteners are synthetic sugar substitutes. To enhance food flavor, you only need a little bit. They can help with weight control and add no calories. In the long term, however, it’s still unclear what their weight loss benefits are.
Your blood sugar will not be raised by artificial sweeteners. If you have diabetes, however, you should check with your doctor before turning to these sugar substitutes.
Consumption guidelines are provided by the FDA for those who worry about artificial sweetener safety concerns.
Which Sugar Substitute Is Appropriate for You?
Ask yourself this question: “Why, precisely, do I want to cut back on my sugar intake?” Sugar alcohols or artificial sweeteners, for example, would be good if you have diabetes – particularly when consumed in moderation. Your blood sugar can still be raised by things like honey and other natural sweeteners, however, so remember that. If you’re not sure what your best option is, consult a dietitian or your doctor.
Aston Gardens At Pelican Pointe – A Environment Providing Healthy Nutrition
At Aston Gardens At Pelican Pointe, we understand how important it is to be able to eat in a stylish dining room and consume healthy, delicious meals. Residents enjoy linen tablecloths, sparkling china, friendly table service, and chef-prepared meals in our Sensations Dining Room.
Enjoy international cuisine and comfort foods daily. Meals are prepared according to the health concerns of each resident, so there’s never a worry about low vitamin content, allergies, health hazards, etc.
To learn more about our apartment home availability, exclusive lifestyle programs, and living options, fill out our convenient online contact form. If you’d like to take a tour of our community, we also have a convenient tour form you can use to schedule one.