There’s something creeping in your local grocery stores that is spookier than processed foods- processed sugars. You know that sugar crash you dread after eating that candy bar from your Halloween haul? Processed sugars are to blame.
You know you love it far too much, yet you don’t have to completely cut sugar from your life. To make the right decisions at the grocery store, one must learn more about sugars. No worries, though, we’re here to help you learn more about the differences between processed sugars and natural sugars. The key to eating healthier is to learn about the types of sugars that are lurking in your foods.
What is a processed sugar?
A processed sugar is basically an artificial sweetener that is processed. They do not contain nutrients that your body can break down. Instead, they usually tend to spike your blood sugar and give you no nutritious value.
Artificial sugars are processed as well, and while they do lower calories in foods, they are not necessarily healthier for you. They can cause disruption in your digestive system and trigger the desire for more sugar. If your goals include weight loss, try to avoid fructose, as it hurts blood sugar levels.
The classic processed sugar is the white table sugar or sugar cubes you see. They are refined because of their white color.
Artificial sweeteners include: saccharin, sucrose, aspartame, sucralose, neotame, high fructose corn syrup, dextrose, corn syrup.
What is a natural sugar?
A natural sugar is a sugar that is found in nature, like fruits and honey. They are easily broken down by our bodies and used for different functions. Fruits contain fiber to help us feel full too, so it is metabolized slower.
Glucose is used for energy as it’s converted into glycogen to fuel our functions. Fructose, or fruit sugars, is a bit more difficult to break down. There is also milk sugar, lactose, which is broken down by enzymes in our digestive system.
Natural sugars include: glucose, fructose, honey, maple syrup, fruits, and fruit nectars
Are there better sugars?
Instead of reaching for the refined, white sugar in your cupboard, grab some organic syrups or natural sugars.
Agave syrup is a common alternative- however since it is much sweeter, you must use less in quantity, especially when baking or cooking. It is also low in glycemic index.
Dates are also great to sweeten with- they are easily digested by the body and can be used in a paste or syrup.
Finally, raw honey is another common natural sweetener. Raw honey has enzymes and other nutrients that promote a healthy digestive system.
More tips for smart sugar consumption
-Always consume sugars in moderation- natural sugars are great but overconsumption of these are not.
-Eat foods that are high in fiber, as it slows sugar absorption in our bodies, thus getting a slow steady energy.
-Drink more water to help your body absorb the proper nutrients it needs.
-Eat more whole foods with complex carbohydrates, vegetables, and a variety of minimally processed meals.
-When you eat the right foods, as well as exercise a few times a week, you’re helping your metabolism break down the right nutrients.
Kickback is proud to make high quality CBD-infused cold brews and ground coffee because we believe that what goes in your body should make you feel good. It’s our mission to bring you our ‘functional chill’ to your day, without any artificial sweeteners.