5 Alternatives to Sugar Everyone Should Know

Sugar is known to be highly addictive, the more you eat it, the more you’ll want., Unfortunately,  sugar doesn’t contain any essential nutrients and can do more harm than good. It can cause insulin resistance, which leads the way to diabetes. sugar is often found in most processed foods, like your cereal, salad dressing, condiments like BBQ sauce, sliced bread, sushi (yes, sushi!) and even reduced fat yogurt. But how much sugar is too much sugar? According to the American Heart Association, the maximum amount of added sugars you should eat in a day vary; for men it's 150 calories per day (37.5 grams or 9 teaspoons) but for women it's 100 calories per day (25 grams or 6 teaspoons). These may seem like large numbers, but if your healthy breakfast of choice is Raisin Bran, you'll be surprised to know that with just 1 cup you're consuming 17g of sugar.  So, what's one to do when everything is full of the sweet stuff? Start making, baking and replacing!


Natural sweeteners are abundantly available in your local grocery store as an affordable, healthy alternative. Have no fear; We worked out the replacement ratios below, so you can skip the math.



Honey: ¾ cup of honey to every 1 cup of sugar

Why it's good for you: Honey contains antioxidants that help reduce the risk of some cancers and heart disease. Plus, bees add enzymes that create hydrogen peroxide, so all honey is anti-bacterial.


Maple syrup: ¾ cup of maple syrup to every 1 cup of white sugar

Why it's good for you: Maple syrup contains a load of vitamins and minerals, including potassium, calcium and high amounts of zinc and manganese, which helps fight illness. Maple syrup is also a good option for vegans.


Molasses: generous 1 cup of molasses to every 1 cup of sugar

Why it's good for you: Molasses is digested more slowly, helping to stabilize blood sugar. It also contains calcium and magnesium, helping to build strong bones and prevent osteoporosis.


Applesauce: 1 cup of unsweetened applesauce to every 1 cup of sugar

Why it's good for you: With every 1-cup serving of applesauce, you receive almost 3 grams of fiber. Fiber helps curb constipation, reduce the risk of heart disease, high cholesterol and type 2 diabetes.


Bananas: 1 cup overripe mashed banana to every 1 cup of sugar

Why they are good for you: Bananas contain potassium, which is essential for healthy kidney and heart function and plays a crucial role in controlling blood pressure.


Don’t just read it, eat it! We’ve included our favorite no-sugar recipe below!


Oatmeal Cookies:

Serving Size: 1 dozen cookies

Total Time: 25 minutes

Temperature: 350oF

Ingredients:

2 cups rolled oats 3 mashed bananas ½ cup raisins (for a slightly different flavor, use craisins!) ¼ cup milk 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Mix oats, bananas, raisins (or craisins), milk, vanilla extract and cinnamon together in a bowl. Once mixed thoroughly, drop, by the spoonful, onto a baking sheet. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until the edges become golden brown. 

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