All You Need To Know About Artificial Sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners are food additives that provide a sweet taste, just like that of sugar. However, they contain significantly fewer calories and are thus considered to be a healthier alternative.
Going on a diet doesn’t mean that you can never enjoy a sweet treat ever again. No sir! You can opt for healthier alternatives to sugar and enjoy a dessert once in a while. This will not only satisfy your sweet tooth, but also allow you to stick to your diet better.
Here are the best three artificial sweetener options:
Derived from the leaves of the Stevia rebaudiana plant, stevia is an extremely popular sugar substitute. It has no carbs and no calories. It does not raise your insulin levels or blood sugar. It is generally deemed safe and has a low potential for toxicity. Since it is very sweet, you just need a very little amount of it to sweeten your food. However, as it is intensely sweet, it doesn’t quite taste like sugar. Some have even complained that it has a bitter aftertaste. Stevia comes in powdered, liquid, and granulated forms.
Erythritol is made from fermented cornstarch or corn. It is a sugar alcohol that is present in very small quantities in melons, grapes, and mushrooms, among others. Erythritol is only partially digested by our intestinal tracts. It is generally deemed as safe. The best part is, it has very small amounts of carbs and calories. It doesn’t affect insulin levels or blood sugar. It has a similar sweetness to sugar, so can be easily used to replace sugar in recipes. It may also prevent cavities and dental plaque. However, some people complain that it doesn’t feel the same as sugar – it may have a cooling sensation on our tongues when consumed. Also, it can cause gas, bloating, and digestive issues in some.
Monk fruit is also called Luo Han Guo. It was originally dried and used in soups, broths, and herbal teas in Asian medicine. Its intense sweetness is due to non-caloric compounds known as mogrosides. Monk fruit is generally deemed safe to consume. It does not affect blood sugar or insulin levels after consumption. Though it tastes better than stevia, it is often overlooked because it is a very expensive product. In fact, it is often combined with stevia to reduce its cost. Monk fruit doesn’t cause any kind of digestive issues. It’s also very sweet, so you just need a very little amount to sweeten your fruit.