Sugar-free this, sugar-free that…but is sugar-free actually better for you? Although they may be less caloric, sugar-free foods are packed with artificial sweeteners. Instead of using natural sugar, “sugar-free” adds loads of chemicals to preserve taste and add sweetness. Read on to learn the sneaky secrets of all things sugar-free.
Ins and Outs of Sugar-Free
The FDA classifies a food as sugar-free if it has less than 0.5 grams of sugar per serving size. This accounts of natural sugars as well as added sugars. What it does not account for is artificial sweeteners and sugar alcohols. Artificial sweeteners are made from cane sugar that is highly transformed through man made processes, resulting in a chemically enhanced sugar form. Sugar alcohols are also chemically produced, but not typically associated with tooth decay. Many granola bars, cereals, gum, candy, and condiments sell a sugar-free version to attract more consumers.
Pros of Sugar-Free
- Can be less caloric
- May decay teeth slower than natural sugar
Cons of Sugar-Free
- Large amounts of artificial sweeteners or sugar alcohols - increased chemicals/preservatives in your food
- Often higher in fat
- Tough on your digestive system due to the many added chemicals
- Foods become higher on the glycemic index since sugar substitutes are significantly sweeter than naturally occurring sugars
- Cause a larger, artificial spike in blood sugar levels, making you crave sugar even more!
More cons than pros? Sugar-free might not deserve all the hype. After all, sugar is our energy source day in and day out. Whether we like it or not, sugar in its purest form is essential for optimal brain function and optimal performance in our everyday activities. So why remove it! Sugar-free may sound good yet munchin on the real thing is so much tastier/better than any artificial sweetener you’ll find in your "sugar-free" foods. Time to get on your Grape Nectar!
Behind Sugar-Free Sweets
Diabetic Chocolate: Sugar-free chocolate is commonly known as diabetic chocolate which scraps normal sugar and replaces it with artificial sweeteners. Although this may be a quick temporary fix for those wishing to go sugar-free, lets not forget that sugar is still a main ingredient here, it’s just disguised in a new form and name. Reach for dark chocolate that is high in cocoa percentage, leaving less room for sugar or sugar substitutes and satisfies you quicker than most chocolate (basically, you won’t eat as much).
Sweets on Keto: The Ketogenic diet means less carbs, minimal protein, and ample fat. Basically, your body transforms fat into energy and carbohydrates go bye-bye birdie! Sugar in keto? Artificial sweeteners and “sugar-free” return. Now although you are using fats as energy, keto long-term can cause fatigue due to the lack of sugar which naturally fuels your body. We suggest incorporating very small amounts of grape sugar which is low in calories, low on the glycemic index, and full of nutrients + antioxidants.
Sugar-Free Desserts: Instead of cane sugar and natural sugar substitutes, you’ll have to scour the store for stevia, brown rice syrup, glucose replacements, etc to make these desserts even somewhat bearable to eat. Perhaps you’ll be eating less calories, but your stomach may not thank you when it has to deal with fake, unnatural chemicals travelling along its digestive tract.
Sugar-Free: Yes or No?
Considering we love a good dessert and that sugar is honestly essential to keep up brain function and energy levels, no, a sugar-free is not always the best way to go. Fuel your body with sugar produced from the earth, not from a manufacturing facility. With thousands of different and delicious applications, Domaine Santé Grape Nectar is a tasty, low-sugar alternative that is as sugar-free as you can get, without all the chemicals and sugar alcohols. Keep it sweet with grape sugar! #NotYourAverageSweetener
Get your Grape Nectar today!