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Best sweetener to use?

by (589)
Updated about 23 hours ago
Created September 23, 2011 at 4:28 PM

Other than NO sweetener --rank the following based on how it will raise (or not raise) Blood sugar 1- being the best:

Stevia Organic Brown Rice Syrup RAW Honey Coconut Crystal/Syrup Yacon Lo Han

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6229 · March 24, 2012 at 6:04 AM

My understanding is that it's predominantly fructose.

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41422 · September 24, 2011 at 7:30 PM

Sugar is sugar, source is mostly inconsequential.

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4764 · September 24, 2011 at 9:56 AM

Truvia is a mix of erythritol and stevia.

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4764 · September 24, 2011 at 9:52 AM

Thanks for the link, Jack, I'll have a look. Thus far, I've felt felt similarly to Chris Kresser on the topic of Stevia: http://chriskresser.com/get-rid-of-heartburn-and-gerd-forever-in-three-simple-steps "I’m not a fan of stevia. It’s a refined, concentrated product and some evidence suggests that it may be associated with cancer, reproductive issues and problems with energy metabolism." Sandra, I didn't see anything regarding xylitol on Kruse's blog. It's a naturally occuring substance in many foods and appears to be safe, and in cases of fungal or bacterial dysbiosis, beneficial.

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5132 · September 24, 2011 at 2:42 AM

You definitely don't want Agave Nectar, which might not be as high glycemic as sugar but will mess up your liver.

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373 · September 23, 2011 at 7:23 PM

The only sweetener Dr. Kruse feels ok with is Stevia - Raw. Other artificial sweeteners are neurotoxic. He has a good article about it on his website.

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18412 · September 23, 2011 at 5:08 PM

Katherine. Not sure if the stevia mutagen thing is for real. Seems like the study showing that was faulty... http://allaboutstevia.wordpress.com/stevia-scientific-pros-and-cons/

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13 Answers

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180 · September 23, 2011 at 6:51 PM

I prefer raw honey as it contains natural antibiotics, but I think self-experimentation might be the best option for you in terms of ranking which affects your personal blood sugar most directly.

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767 · September 23, 2011 at 4:47 PM

I'm not qualified to rank all of those sweeteners, but I would recommend you look at more than just blood sugar when choosing a sweetener. For example, foods with a ton of fructose (like honey and agave nectar) score well on the glycemic index, but are more likely to make you fat than an artificial carb like dextrose.

That said, stevia causes the smallest effect on blood sugar out of those choices. Its GI score is 0. In fact, there may even be evidence that it lowers blood sugar levels.

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5132 · September 24, 2011 at 2:42 AM

You definitely don't want Agave Nectar, which might not be as high glycemic as sugar but will mess up your liver.

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4764 · September 23, 2011 at 4:46 PM

Stevia won't likely at all but I tend to avoid it. (mutagenicity)

I like rice syrup simply because it's mostly glucose. You can manage how it affects your blood glucose by being active, maintaining excellent insulin sensitivity and the amount of fat with which you eat it.

It really doesn't affect me at all - but I'm eating very little of it usually in the form of ice cream or something like creme brulee....both of which are almost all fat.

Personally, I do like xylitol but most don't share my view. :D

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4764 · September 24, 2011 at 9:52 AM

Thanks for the link, Jack, I'll have a look. Thus far, I've felt felt similarly to Chris Kresser on the topic of Stevia: http://chriskresser.com/get-rid-of-heartburn-and-gerd-forever-in-three-simple-steps "I’m not a fan of stevia. It’s a refined, concentrated product and some evidence suggests that it may be associated with cancer, reproductive issues and problems with energy metabolism." Sandra, I didn't see anything regarding xylitol on Kruse's blog. It's a naturally occuring substance in many foods and appears to be safe, and in cases of fungal or bacterial dysbiosis, beneficial.

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373 · September 23, 2011 at 7:23 PM

The only sweetener Dr. Kruse feels ok with is Stevia - Raw. Other artificial sweeteners are neurotoxic. He has a good article about it on his website.

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18412 · September 23, 2011 at 5:08 PM

Katherine. Not sure if the stevia mutagen thing is for real. Seems like the study showing that was faulty... http://allaboutstevia.wordpress.com/stevia-scientific-pros-and-cons/

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2889 · September 24, 2011 at 6:01 AM

"I'm kind of surprised that paleos would be recommending sweeteners that Grok would never, ever have had access to"

Again, some people view "paleo" as a useful template or paradigm, others as dogma.

I personally use http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saccharin from time to time, usually in iced coffee.

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78417 · September 23, 2011 at 11:01 PM

I have a stevia plant in my garden this year- the fresh leaves are incredibly sweet. I plan to dry the plant and crumble the leaves to use in cooking.

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3904 · September 24, 2011 at 3:10 AM

I'm kind of surprised that paleos would be recommending sweeteners that Grok would never, ever have had access to so theoretically we would not be best adapted to eat. Honey in very small quantities would seem to be the answer IMHO. There's nothing else that anyone has listed that comes directly out of nature.

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951 · September 24, 2011 at 12:28 AM

General rule of thumb is to opt for natural over anything made in a lab, but depending on many factors, something like agave is not as great as some might believe. Here is a great post from Balanced Bites on sugars and sweeteners.

http://balancedbites.com/2011/04/the-dish-on-sugar-sweeteners.html

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1960 · September 23, 2011 at 5:33 PM

My index finger. ;)

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78417 · September 23, 2011 at 5:24 PM

Stevia or Xylitol.

However, Stevia has that.... weird chemical taste you need to get used to (acquired taste)

Xylitol is claimed to be good for teeth, the very reason it is in bunch of dental products.

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8979 · September 23, 2011 at 5:16 PM

Everyone is different. The best way to know is to test each with a glucose meter. Alternatively, you can eat it and see how your cravings are. That method works for some people.

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0 · May 11, 2013 at 5:19 PM

Dates seem to be the most logical choice to me.

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0 · September 24, 2011 at 3:45 PM

Has anyone ever tried or know anything about coconut sugar???

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6229 · March 24, 2012 at 6:04 AM

My understanding is that it's predominantly fructose.

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41422 · September 24, 2011 at 7:30 PM

Sugar is sugar, source is mostly inconsequential.

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5132 · September 24, 2011 at 2:50 AM

I've sampled many of the above sweeteners. What is the best tasting sweetener? I have to say it is Truvia (erythritol). It's supposed to have no BG effect. My coffee tastes much better with Truvia than with liquid stevia, powder stevia, Lo Han, Xylitol, etc.

Xylitol is probably the worst tasting sweetener. I gotta throw away the container since you have to use a full tablespoon to sweeten anything, and the taste isn't too hot either. It's actually a bit salty.

Liquid stevia doesn't taste too good either, but you can get used to it. Liquid splenda (sucralose) does taste good but everytime I use it, I get scared of putting pesticide in my drink. I use it very sparingly but it does taste ok (although there is still some bitter aftertaste, like liquid stevia).

I never dug Sweet'n'Low nor Equal or any other powder sweetener except stevia. All except Stevia have either saccharine or maltodextrin (which is somewhat glycemic), and are thought to be carcinogenic in large doses. I prefer powdered stevia after Truvia.

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4764 · September 24, 2011 at 9:56 AM

Truvia is a mix of erythritol and stevia.

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