The rich flavor of morning coffee is something worth waking up for. It even makes Monday mornings easier. Alright, let’s be honest, it makes every morning a little easier.
Now, while the benefits of coffee are pretty well known, if not just for the sweet nectar of caffeine itself, it often gets a bad reputation. I often get mildly irked at someone speaking poorly about my precious sweet coffee, but they might actually be on to something. It mostly has to do with how you take your coffee.
Coffee is naturally bitter, and it’s not a taste most people like by itself. Think about your own preferences.
How do you like yours? A teaspoon or two of sugar? Do you swear by a certain sweetener, asking the barista to fill up the empty sugar caddy if it has run out? It is perfectly normal to want to sweeten up your cup of Joe, but what do you know about that sweetener you use to enhance your coffee’s taste?
Read on and learn four very important facts about the sweeteners you add to your coffee.
Most natural sweeteners are healthy
Coffee, caffeine, and stimulation, we all know how they are related. In fact, some people associate caffeine with health risks like restlessness.
So what can we do to make it better? Simple, use natural sweeteners to your coffee instead of article ones and you’ve already done a lot to increase your health. For starters, they are not high in calories and therefore they won’t make you fat. Furthermore, their low-calorie feature ensures that they don’t spike insulin levels. Which is great news for anyone who worries about diabetes.
When it comes to available options for natural sweeteners, you are pretty much spoilt for choice. The most common ones include:
- Stevia: this low-calorie sweetener is extracted from Stevia rebaudiana, a plant that has been used for sweetening and medicinal purposes for a very long time in South America.
- Erythritol: this is yet another low-calorie sweetener that has a reputation for regulating insulin. If you are living with diabetes, this is the best sweetener for you.
- Yacon Syrup: this is arguably the newest natural sweetener in town, and it sure is giving the traditional ones a run for the top spot. According to research, it shown to help women, who are overweight, shed some pounds.
- Xylitol: of all the four natural sweeteners, this one is the closest to artificial sugar. In coffee, it tastes almost exactly the same, but doesn’t come with the bad qualities associated with processed sugar. Surprisingly, it is also linked with good dental health.
Refined sugar is nothing but sweet poison
Sure, coffee tastes great and keeps you sharp for many hours. But what if your little morning habit is the reason why your latest physical showed worrying numbers? This could be the case if you are using processed sugar and other artificial sweeteners with your latte. They are really nothing more than sweet poison.
These sweeteners aren’t so sweet after all.
- Firstly- they spike insulin and contribute to diabetes.
- Secondly- they throw off your body’s pH balance, making it more acidic. This is bad because an acidic environment is a breeding ground for most diseases.
- Third- artificial sugar is highly addictive.
Don’t be shocked if you find yourself salivating after just reading about sweets. The mere thought of it plays with your mind and triggers a severe glucose craving that can only be satisfied by consuming lots of sugar. Which then leads to more sugar. The cycle is endless.
Zero-calorie refined sweeteners? Don’t trust them
The raging debate over refined sugar is one that is not going to end anytime soon. There are manufacturers who want to make a profit on one end, and dietitians who want people to live longer on the other. At the center of it all is you, the consumer.
Scientists and dietitians say that refined sugar is bad, and they have some pretty convincing evidence to back up their claims. So what do manufacturers do? They rebrand their products and call them ‘zero-calorie’ stuff. The problem is that this new type appears to have even greater health risks than the old one that was already too risky.
Some studies associate them with cancer as well as the same weight gain that they are supposed to prevent. Pretty ironic, isn’t it? Your safest bet is to stay away from them at all costs.
Sweeteners come in different flavors
On a rather positive note, pretty much every sweetener adds some flavor and a sweet taste to your coffee. Whether you like the flavor or not, totally depends on your personal taste. Most natural sweeteners help perk up the taste of your coffee significantly, and you have lots of options to choose from. Consider trying honey, molasses, maple syrup or coconut sugar in your next cup.
Break the habit now
Now that you know the truth about sweeteners, in your coffee, tea, bagel, or whatever else you use them with, you can make a more informed choice. Maybe try some natural products in different concentrations to see if you can switch over to healthier alternatives.
Everything takes a little time to adjust, so don’t be put off if you don’t immediately embrace the change. Your body might reject the flavor at first, but will be thanking you in the long run.
Latest posts by Janet Robinson (see all)
- The Ugly Truth Behind The Sweeteners You Put In Your Coffee - February 28, 2017