I have been searching FOREVER for a sugar substitute that wasn’t made of harmful chemicals. I am not concerned about the calories as much as I am the health issues resulting from products like Splenda, or even sugar itself. There has been a lot of coverage on the health issues caused by sugar. In addition to this, most of the people eating sugar aren’t using raw cane sugar but are ingesting the white granulated, highly processed, highly BLEACHED table sugar. No, that white table sugar is not in it’s natural form.
Sugar wreaks havoc in our bodies. It sends signals to the brain which light up the same areas that respond to drugs and alcohol. Sugar is certainly something you can become addicted to. So when the sugar overload hits, what parts of your health are suffering?
- It’s not good for your teeth: This one shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. You’ve all heard this from your Dentist and have likely racked up a couple of cavities over the years purely from sugar ingestion. I know I have. In fact, my dentist suggested I rinse my mouth after eating fruits or drinking smoothies! Yes, they are so healthy for you but naturally occurring sugars from fruit will still sit on your teeth and eat away at them. By no means am I telling anyone to stop eating fruit! But, rinsing your mouth or even brushing them after chomping down on some delicious fruit will keep your teeth happy!
- It will battle with your Liver: Sugar is high in Fructose which is something our body does not produce on its own. Our Livers are designed to be able to process SOME fructose, but unfortunately your liver has its limits. Ever wonder why detoxes suggest no sugar? This is why! You detox naturally through your liver, think of it as your very own sifter. It will try its best to get rid of the bad stuff. Once your liver is overloaded it can become sluggish and whatever isn’t being disposed of will circulate in different places of your body. This is why sugar in high amounts might make you feel poorly when you eat it often.
- It is Cancer causing: Sugar can cause things like insulin resistance and inflammation. Both of these conditions are breeding grounds for cancer cells. Sugar also causes Acidity in the body which has been heavily researched as another cause of Cancer. Everyone should lower their sugar intake for this reason as Cancer seems to be on the rise but if you have additional risk factors, sugar limiting is incredibly important.
- Suppresses your immune system: Your immune system will become sluggish as it’s working to rid your body of the damage caused by sugar intake. If your immune system is sluggish, you are far more likely to become sick. Are you getting sick more often than others? Perhaps your sugar intake should be lessened.
- Causes mood disturbances in children: We have all heard of the sugar highs that children experience due to sugar. Some parents don’t allow their children to have very much sugar or any sugar at all. While some people may judge these parents for not allowing their “kids to be kids”, there is more behind it than that. Along with all the health issues on this list, children experience highs and lows when consuming sugar. Think of it like a pendulum. If it swings high one way, it’s going to swing just as hard the opposite way. The same goes for mood and sugar. Kids will have bursts of energy , sometimes to the point of acting out and then they will experience “the crash”. This crash will likely cause tantrums, poor behaviour, tiredness, fussiness, and crankiness. Remember: simple carbohydrates (ie. white bread, bagels, strachy baked goods, etc.) will act the same way in their little bodies as they cause the same insulin reaction in the body as sugar does.
- Eczema and other skin conditions: Sugar will cause or worsen eczema in children and adults as well. If you or your child has this skin condition try lessening their sugar intake to see if that helps reduce outbreaks. This goes the same for anyone experiencing acne or dry skin conditions.
- Premature aging: Sugar creates a natural process in the body called “glycation” which is when the sugar in your bloodstream attaches to proteins and create “advanced end products”. As more of these molecules are cerated in the body, they break down things like elastin and collagen in the body. Collagen and Elastin are the building blocks in your skin that naturally slow in production as you age. Eating sugar will attack them even quicker, causing accelerated aging of your skin.
- Obesity: Well, this is an obvious one too. We all know to cut down on sugar when we’re trying to lose weight. Sugar is high in calories, it also causes insulin swings and insulin resistance. This leads to weight gain and in severe cases, Diabetes.
- It can cause Food Allergies: This has to do with the amount of inflammation that sugar creates in your body. It inhibits your body to be able to read certain foods properly, so your confused and overloaded body may respond by developed sensitivities and allergies.
- It creates the same addictive pathways in our brains as many well known street drugs.
So, what do we do next? We all love sugar in some way or form. Are we willing to completely give it up? Most people are likely not going to sign on the dotted line to never consume sugar again in their life. Everyone needs a little sweetness sometimes. So, we need to find a replacement. One that wont damage our health like the chemical products such as splenda. While I do still indulge in the sugar filled treat here and there, my last few years have been filled with plant based sweeteners. They were not harming my health at all but they were leaving a certain bitterness behind. This is a common complaint of most plant based sweeteners. Since discovering the Canadian distributor Raw Elements (a company of all healthy, organic, and raw), I have discovered Lakanto.
Lakanto is an alertnative sweetener to sugar that is made from monk fruit. FRUIT! Why hasnt anyone thought of this yet? The thing about this sweetener is it has no calories (who doesn’t love that?! Sweeteners are not where you wanna get your calories from). It’s so pure and healthy that it is even okay to take during candida cleanses as it wont affect the yeast in your system. It’s also a better choice than a chemical sweetener for anyone with insulin issues. Once I tried this sweetener I was hooked. It looks and tastes exactly like sugar! There was no bitter after taste which is common with other alternative and natural sweeteners. I am forever in love with this product!
My favourite part about this sweetener is it can be swapped out equally for sugar! When you’re baking you simply swap the cup of sugar for a cup of Lakanto. Easy! Most sweeteners require math to determine what portion would equal the amount of sugar in a recipe. Lakanto matches sugar one to one which simplifies your recipes and allows you to bake like you normally would!
You can buy this sweetener by the bag or in packets that are convenient for travel and work. I purchase my Lakanto from Raw Elements at www.rawelements.ca. Use my code: ‘BLOOM’ when checking out at their website to recieve 10% all of their products including Lakanto monk fruit sweetener.
Tip: I made my own Healthy Hot Chocolate with Lakanto!
Healthy Hot Chocolate Recipe:
-1 heaping Tbsp. of raw organic Cacao
-1 Splash of Almond Milk (you can add more if you want it to be creamy)
-1 packet or tsp. of Lakanto sweetener
Sip and enjoy!