12.27.2013

Fit Friday: Alternative Sweeteners & GIVEAWAY


Welcome to FIT FRIDAY! Today, we are gonna talk a little bit about alternative sweeteners to sugar. Whether or not you want a sweetener with calories, we have a list for you.

Before we talk about alternatives, let's talk about the bad guys: artificial sweeteners (namely Splenda, Equal, & Sweet N Low). 


Equal - those little blue sugar packets you put in your coffee, is a disguise for the REAL bad guy... aspartame.
Aspartame is nasty for lots of reasons, but the one that grosses me out the most is that it converts to formaldehyde in your stomach. Yes, the stuff that is used to preserve dead animals you dissect in biology lab.
Gross. 
It also causes only about a billion bad things to happen to your body, like brain tumors, diabetes, migranes, depression, and seizures. You can read about more side effects HERE.

Splenda - those yellow packets of "sugar," Splenda is really sucralose.
Sucralose was made accidentally on the hunt for new insecticides. If that doesn't gross you out already, then I don't know what will. INSECTICIDES, people. Sucralose has many of the same side effects and concerns as aspartame, so I won't say too much on the subject. You can read most about sucralose HERE.

Sweet'N Low - these are the pretty pink "sugar" packets you'll find. This is really saccharine, which, out of all the artificial sweeteners mentioned, is considered the "safest." Well, okay. There isn't lot of research that says it's necessarily bad for you, but saccharine is still derived from coal tar (gross) and caused bladder cancer in rats. And it used to be considered a carcinogen by the FDA, although that label has since been removed. Still doesn't sound good to me. You can read more HERE.

Now that we've dealt with the top three artificial sweetener "bad guys" .... let's move on to some healthy alternatives!

Zero Calorie
Monk Fruit (or Lo Han Guo- liquid or granulated)
Stevia (liquid, granulated, raw)

Healthy (with calories)
Agave
Honey
Sugar in the Raw
Sucanat

I won't spend a whole lot of time discussing the "healthy" alternatives, because pretty much everyone knows about honey and sugar in the raw. Agave is similar to honey, but is low glycemic and made from the blue agave plant. It's also used in tequila!
Sucanat is the one on the list that is a little strange. It's essentially just unprocessed cane sugar. It has all its natural molasses still intact, so it tastes a lot like brown sugar.

To talk more about stevia and monk fruit, I'm now to focus on NuNaturals - a company whose products I LOVE. I carry their squeeze bottle of liquid stevia around in my purse so I can sweeten my coffee anywhere without using the artificial sweeteners mentioned earlier. And today, I'm offering an awesome GIVEAWAY from them, so you can try their products out for yourself!


The above bottle is exactly what I have in my purse right now. I love it, especially because NuNatural's stevia has no aftertaste like a lot of stevia does.

Stevia, basically, is an all-natural, low glycemic sweetener derived from the stevia plant in South America. It's 300x sweeter than sugar, so you don't need to use a ton of it! It has no carbs, no calories, and has antibacterial properties. It might even lower your blood pressure!
Another natural sweetener that's on the rise is monk fruit extract, seen above in NuNaturals "Lo Han Supreme" (lo han guo is the real name for monk fruit), or known as the more common Nectresse. Monk fruit is a small melon that comes from China & Southeast Asia. It's used a lot in herbal medicines, and, like stevia,  it is also 200 to 300x sweeter than sugar. Also low glycemic. 

Okay. So now, you're an expert. 

NuNaturals recently sent me a HUGE box containing all of their newest products. It included....
Tagatose (a NEW alternative sweetener. Click to read more!)

I'll admit, I haven't had time to try everything out yet because I've been crazy busy working this month, but I look forward to trying them! I actually plan on making some cherry vanilla hot chocolate with the cherry vanilla stevia I received, and when I do, I will post it for you all to enjoy! However, if I already love their many other stevia products, I can tell you I will probably enjoy these as well.  I'm especially excited to try the Tagatose...according to their website, Tagatose is a new sweetener that is actually prebiotic and low glycemic. Prebiotic...how cool!

GIVEAWAY TIME!

FOUR (yes...FOUR!) lucky readers will each win the following:
Lemon Stevia
Peppermint Stevia
Cherry Vanilla Stevia
50 ct. White Stevia Powder Packets

Wanna win? Here's how! MAKE SURE YOU LEAVE A COMMENT ON THIS POST FOR EACH ENTRY, OR IT WON'T BE COUNTED. 

1. Follow Passing Daisies on Twitter and tweet "I just entered to win @NuNaturals Stevia products from @passingdaisies! Head to the blog and ENTER TO WIN now! #fitfluential #giveaway"

2. Instagram a picture of this post (or a picture on it) and say "I just entered to win NuNaturals Stevia products from @passingdaisies! Head to the blog and ENTER TO WIN now! #fitfluential #giveaway"

3. Pin this post on Pinterest and say "I just entered to win NuNaturals Stevia products from @passingdaisies! Head to the blog and ENTER TO WIN now! #fitfluential #giveaway"

4. Comment on the PD Facebook page and tell me how you would use your stevia. Remember to comment below saying you did this!

5. Follow PD on Google (right hand column, where it says "Followers" AND//OR subscribe to PD via email.

GIVEAWAY ENDS JANUARY 3 (FRIDAY) at 12AM. Winner will be contacted via email.

Get entering! :)

15 comments:

  1. Following you on Twitter and tweeted via @serene_streams!
    https://twitter.com/Serene_streams/status/416576487483920385

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  2. I'm also an email subscriber - Thank you!

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  3. Stevia is great in my morning coffee and I'm an email subscriber!

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  4. I would love to win and try Stevia because since I've started my clean eating phase I haven't found anything that replaces my white sugar in my coffee yet I use coconut sugar, honey and agave in all my baking. I follow and tweeted on tweeter @sherriscience.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I follow you on Twitter and I tweeted
    https://twitter.com/cezovski9/status/417475160703107072
    Digicats {at} Sbcglobal {dot} Net

    ReplyDelete
  6. I pinned on Pinterest
    http://www.pinterest.com/pin/138204282288812932/
    Digicats {at} Sbcglobal {dot} Net

    ReplyDelete
  7. I follow on twitter and tweeted.

    @mandaoverturf

    mandaoverturf at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete