Consider botanical sweeteners to minimize sugar intake...
There is no doubt that sugar has a bittersweet reputation. Too much added sugar (sugar that food manufacturers add to products to increase flavor, or extend shelf life) can be a threat to your overall health. "The effects of added sugar intake — higher blood pressure, inflammation, weight gain, and diabetes— are all linked to an increased risk for heart attack and stroke," writes Dr. Hu in a study published in 2014 in JAMA Internal Medicine.
The less sugar you consume on a daily basis, the less your body will feel like it needs sugar for energy and fulfilment. How then, can health conscious individuals avoid consuming high levels of added sugars? One method is by trading sugar for botanical sweeteners like Monk Fruit and Stevia that contain relatively no calories, and also tend to minimize a sugar spike followed by a crash.
Stevia and Monk Fruit sweeteners are both derived from plants. Monk Fruit sweetener comes from the juice of monk fruit that is dried, and then turned into a concentrated powder. Stevia sweetener comes from Stevia leaves after they are dried and put through a purification process. Both sweeteners are drastically sweeter than sugar, meaning that they only need to be used in very small amounts to achieve optimal sweetness.
Since botanical sweeteners tend to minimize sugar spikes that cause energy crashes, and are also free of empty calories, they make for great alternatives for sugar. Using them when preparing meals, or selecting snacks, will bring you a few steps closer to lowering your sugar intake—which is why we use them in our snacks at Grateful Snacking Company!
Our granola bites are a perfect example of a delicious snack that contains zero sugar. Snack on them right out of the bag, or pair with favorite non-dairy milk (like soy, coconut or almond). You can top off a yogurt cup, a non-dairy ice cream, or a smoothie bowl with them as well. It's also delicious to dip them in almond butter. Enjoy snacks made with zero sugar, and watch your sugar cravings disappear!