Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Healthier Sugar? Try Coconut Sugar

Let's face it sugar is sugar and should be consumed in extreme moderation.  This week we are researching some healthier sugar substitutes.  Remember one of the most important litmus tests for any food..................is it as close as God our Creator has made it as possible.

We all have a sweet tooth and like to incorporate some sugar in our diets for pleasure.  The problem today is the huge amounts of sugar substances we consume on a daily basis.  No wonder so many of us are sick!  In years past dessert was non-exhistant except on rare and special occasions.  Often a simple serving of fruit was enough.  Now we consume it daily in and on almost all our foods.

I don't know if you've heard much about the Glycemic Index.....it's a measurement on how foods uptake into the body and how they raise our blood sugars.  Not all foods are created equal when it comes to the Glycemic Index and it appears this holds true for sugars also.

Coconut sugar is a truly exceptional cane sugar alternative. With a low glycemic index measurement of 35 coconut sugar compares favorably to cane sugar's 50, and makes coconut sugar one of the lowest GI unprocessed sweeteners on the market.

Additionally, coconut sugar contains more minerals than brown cane sugar, with measurable amounts of nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, chlorine, magnesium, sulfur and other micronutrients.

Coconut sugar is made by evaporating the coconut sap, which is hand-harvested by traditional sugar farmers who climb high into the canopy of coconut palms to slice the blossoms from their stems and collect the sweet nectar. The collected nectar is then kettle-boiled into a thick caramelly syrup, dried, and ground into crystals.

Coconut sugar can be used in recipes in place of cane sugar in a 1:1 replacement ratio.


Sugar Coconut states, "Not all palm sugars are created equal. Coconut Palm Sugar is palm sugar but not all palm sugars are coconut sugars. It is very important to make this distinction as the two are different kind of sugars. More importantly, they do not have the same glycemic index and consequently do not have the same health benefits. The studies made by the Philippine Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI) on the Glycemic Index of Coconut Palm Sugar is specific to the Coconut (cocos nucifera). You can view a copy of the Glycemic Index of Coco Sugar from the FNRI here
What's even more confusing is that in some parts of Southeast Asia, the two terms are used interchangeably. For example, Traditional Thai palm sugar are mixed regular cane sugar and or malt sugar. Traditional Cambodian palm sugar is derived from Palmyra tree. Traditional Indonesian palm sugar is made from the Aren Palm. Due to this interchanging use of terms and the gaining popularity of coconut sugar, some sellers are selling their palm sugars as "coconut sugars", although they are NOT coconut sugars. So be very careful when purchasing "palm sugar" and make sure that what you are buying is what you are expecting it to be. Also keep in mind that coconut sugar is NOT as sweet as regular sugar so it should NOT taste as sweet as regular sugar
It can be difficult to tell so how can you tell if you are buying "real" coconut sugar? .... check the label make sure that is made from 100% coconut palm or coconut sap!"

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