Sugar is one of the number one enemies to healthy, glowing skin. It can cause acne and premature aging. It cause inflammation and stresses the body. When the body is stressed it produces more cortisol. More cortisol in the body is more cortisol that the liver has to break down. This can overwhelm the liver and when the liver gets overwhelmed toxins can leak into the bloodstream and irritate the skin.
Sugar can also speed up aging. It causes crystallization in the skin matrix which leads to more wrinkles.
Why should you use sugar substitutes?
The average American consumes 1/2 pound of sugar every day for a total of 182.5 pounds of sugar every year. That's not good. Why? Sugar is a highly processed sweetener. It is completely devoid of nutrients and contains only processed carbohydrates.
Processed carbohydrates spike insulin levels, create more hunger and rob the body of nutrients. When you eat sugar, it triggers your stomach to send a message to your brain saying, "Eat more, eat more!" This message blocks the message, "You're full." So when overeating, we are not overeating vegetables or whole grains. Most likely when you overeat, it is highly processed or empty carbohydrates.
Sugar can become addictive. When given the choice of the sweet white stuff or cocaine, over 90% of rats choose sugar. I get addicted to sugar and have quit many times only to get back on. I am, thank goodness, currently off it.
Xylitol Sugar Free Brownies
Try this delicious brownie recipe. It is gluten free too!
So what are some good natural substitutes?
Unrefined sugars in include sucanat, rapadura and coconut sugar. These sugars are as close to nature as you can get. I have been using a little sucanat and have really liked it. It is dark brown and has the retained molasses, so it has a very rich flavor.
Sucanat still contains nutrients, vitamins and minerals and is less processed than organic evaporated cane sugar. When baking with sucanat keep in mind that it absorbs more moisture than sugar so you may have to add some extra butter or oil.
Sweeteners to Avoid
I have used agave quite a bit but I am not recommending it because very few brands are naturally produced and most are highly processed. It is also very high in fructose which is not good for us outside of it's natural state. For example the fructose in fruit is processed well by our bodies but the fructose in high fructose corn syrup is not.
Please avoid high fructose corn syrup.
Read here about the extremely negative effects of high fructose corn syrup. It may come from corn but it is far from natural and is quickly converted into fat in our bodies.
Also, please do not use artificial sweeteners. They are one of the worst substances you can put in your body. They are extremely acid forming and can throw off your body pH. They have been linked to many health problems from headaches to cancer.
I have to put a disclaimer. My husband loves his treats, so my kids do get sugar occasionally and I do very occasionally eat something with it in it. We're not perfect!
Sweeten Green Smoothies with Stevia
Naturally Sweet Non-Alcoholic Drinks
Return from Sugar Substitutes to Homepage