Many researches carried out by specialists are responsible for investigating why sugar generates so much addiction ( one ) and why it costs us so much to opt for other alternatives that are much healthier and, above all, nutritious.
There are many causes that are being considered, one of them has to do with the fact that sugar is the first food we take since birth, in this case, breast milk, which contains not only a lot of fat, ideal for the development and Baby growth, if not, also many simple sugars, so it generates a sense of pleasure and causes a special and unique bond with the mother.
Another cause that is also associated with sugar consumption has to do with how we feel, how we relate to the world and how we create the links as we grow, that is, a rather emotional cause directly applicable to food.
As marketing and advertising plays and enjoys associating repeatedly in happy times and the fact of feeling good and conforming with our life has to be directly linked to the consumption of sweet things, as in birthdays, the reward of doing the things well or being "good kids".
One of the most striking findings of some years ago, is that the consumption of sugars and fats generates the same addiction and activates exactly the same parts of our brain that has to do with the consumption of some narcotics.
And of course, and not least, the amount of food that surrounds us every time we step on the street, every time we go to a cafeteria, every time we stop to eat or drink something.
We are stuffed and overstimulated due to the great demand for food of this caliber, it is a subliminal and indirect way of making us active consumers of so much superfluous and unhealthy food.
What alternatives do we have to white sugar? Is it possible to reduce that addiction?
It is a question of raising awareness, of researching, of seeking truthful information from the mouths of nutritionists and food specialists with a good base, any informative information without rigor, or a person who transmits information that does not know where it comes from.
We have to be aware that sugar and sweeteners in themselves are not necessary to live, for our health and less for our brain, as we have heard a thousand times the typical phrase that "we need sugar for the brain".
We will mention below the varieties of sugar that exist and if it deserves or is not worth the said alternative, because sometimes it is not more than the same product masked in a good name or with additives that leave much to be desired.
- Brown sugar: Brown or white is practically the same product, because it is not even a food, it only has one difference and it is the color.
- Rapadura or panela ( two ) : we can buy it in the supermarket or in herbalists if it specifically puts in its container sugar of 100% integral cane and obtained under mechanical procedures since it will conserve the vitamins and several minerals like iron, potassium or calcium.
- Coconut sugar ( 3 ) : One of the best properties of this type of sugar is that it does not increase the glycemic index suddenly, if not gradually and is 100% complete.
Syrups, syrups or honey:
- Agave syrup: obtaining this syrup is completely chemical so it is convenient to look at the container to get rid of doubts, its glycemic index is also low.
- Honey bee: Many people opt for honey because it gives them more confidence or confidence that comes from bees but in no case is one of the best alternatives, because just as white sugar causes sudden hyperglycemia and in terms of the contribution of minerals and vitamins is practically nil.
- Corn syrup: is one of the worst and most used options in the production of processed products, soft drinks, juices or snacks contain this syrup that is obtained in a chemical way after passing several processes to make it into a thick syrup.
- Stevia : very convenient and recommended for people suffering from diabetes but only if it is consumed through the leaves in infusion. It is also a liquid product that is not advisable and if you find it in the form of granules or powder, make sure that 100% of the leaf of the plant has been obtained.
- Xylitol : extracted from the birch, many nutritionists advise this alternative as long as it puts in the container of the product that its extraction has been 100% natural, because sometimes it is obtained by chemical processes that are not at all advisable.
- Saccharin : the so advised by doctors and succinate saccharin used to sweeten by a good number of people suffering from diabetes, is a synthetic product totally laboratory. Also used to make other products such as sugar-free yoghurts, drinks and specific products for diabetics. Definitely not recommended.
There are definitely several alternatives that we can find in the market today.
Now it is only a matter of choosing the most appropriate one with the adequate information, although the best alternative of all is to educate the palate.
We can begin to reduce sugar gradually in our day to day, until we stop sweetening coffee in the morning, reduce the consumption of cookies as the only snack and opt for fruit, sweets at parties and alternate fruit or desserts made in house, eliminate the consumption of soft drinks and juices when there is thirst and so a long list of things that we can change, we will be an example for others, especially for children because they change by example.
- George A. Bray. Is Sugar Addictive?
- Panela Monitor. What is Panela Accessed on 11/28/2018. Available at: http://www.panelamonitor.org/content/3/what-is-panela/
- Elaine Gardner Alternative sugars: Coconut sugar. BDJ volume 223, page 749. https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.bdj.2017.1011