More and more people are choosing sweeteners or sweeteners, believing that they are effective and harmless sugar substitutes. And it really is. The authors of TengriMIX asked for explanations from the well-known professor of medicine, president of the public association of the National Center for Healthy Nutrition, Dr. Almaz Sharman.
TengriMIX: Almaz Toregeldievich, are sweeteners harmful or not?
Diamond Sharman: Let’s face it: sweeteners are bad for your health. They increase appetite, encourage sweets and promote weight gain, leading you directly to obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and fatty liver. In any case, you are in danger.
TengriMIX: How to become cute now? Are there alternative sources of sweets for them?
Diamond Sharman: we are all human and it is impossible to give up all sweeteners tomorrow. But it is possible and necessary to minimize the problem. To help you decide which sweetener is best and how to finally quit the habit, our Nutrition Center has compiled a list of the best and worst sweeteners.
Fruit fresh or frozen
Sweeten foods or drinks with fresh or frozen fruit. There are no empty calories in the fruit, which makes them ideal. Try sweetening oatmeal with banana or apple sauce, berries in natural yogurt or frozen fruit in smoothies. Another option is to use natural flavors such as vanilla or almond extract, cocoa powder and spices such as cinnamon and cloves.
Stevia – in sachets, drops or herbal form – is very popular with nutritionists. Why; Stevia does not contain calories and the sweeteners based on it are usually of plant origin. they are not artificial. Mix a teaspoon of sweetener with natural yogurt for a quick, easy and SWEET pleasure!
If you have prediabetes or diabetes, artificial sweeteners and stevia are clearly preferred over regular sugar. By comparison, they do not cause a sharp rise in blood glucose levels. But sugar substitutes can trigger cravings for sweeter foods. In addition, their excessive consumption, according to scientific studies, can increase glucose intolerance, which is already a precursor to prediabetes and diabetes.
Furthermore. Artificial sweeteners affect the bacteria in the gut and lead to fat accumulation.
Natural honey, maple and other natural syrups
The good news is that natural sweeteners contain slightly more nutrients than table sugar. The bad news: they are all high in sugar and therefore high in calories. Therefore, consume them in quantities not more than one or two teaspoons a day.
Honey and pure maple syrup contain antioxidants as well as ingredients that help nourish the intestinal flora. In addition, honey is rich in minerals and vitamins E and C. It is important to remember that it should not be given to infants because it may contain spores of botulism bacteria, which pose a serious risk to the health of children under one year.
At the grocery store, read all food labels, because maple syrup brands often contain high-fructose corn syrup. This factor is associated with long-term metabolic disorders, such as high triglyceride levels, accumulation in the abdomen, decreased insulin sensitivity, and this predisposes to diabetes. If in doubt, use pure maple syrup instead.
Agave nectar is an exotic natural sweetener. It has fewer nutrients than honey or maple syrup. It is not pasteurized, so it should not be given to babies. Agave nectar has the same amount of carbohydrates and calories as regular sugar, but is tastier, so it can be used in smaller quantities. Although agave carbohydrates are relatively slow to digest, which is generally good, it contains sugar and still raises blood glucose levels.
After all, when it comes to waistline, body weight and blood glucose levels, all natural sweeteners behave like sugar.
Table sugar has an inflammatory effect, has no calories and nutritional value. Unfortunately, many of our favorite foods contain latent sugar.
Many flavored dessert bars, yogurts and cereals usually have about 12 grams (1 tablespoon each) of added sugar. And in sweet drinks it is about 40 grams per serving. Even your favorite frozen desserts and pastries are full of table sugar. For women and children over the age of two, it is recommended to limit it to 25 grams per day (6 teaspoons or about 100 calories), for men to 36 grams per day (9 teaspoons or about 150 calories). The average adult eats about 77 grams of sugar a day, which is about three times the normal amount. This is about 230 calories a day, and on its own can lead to significant fat accumulation – up to 10 pounds per year! It can be said that this is a serious cause of the obesity epidemic.
Food is not the only place where table sugar hides. Drinks are its main source. They contain about half the added sugar that Americans consume. Limiting sugary drinks is critical. Reduces the risk of obesity, which is a risk factor for at least 12 different types of cancer. Meanwhile, there is no convincing evidence that sugary drinks cause cancer.
TengriMIX: Almaz Toregeldievich, and yet how to get rid of the habit of eating sugar in large quantities, what do you suggest for a sweet tooth for it?
Diamond Sharman: First of all, neither sugar nor its substitute is a healthy choice. Whether it is carbonated beverages, sugary tea, fruit drinks, sugar packs or sugar substitutes for coffee or tea, they all put your health at risk. It is best to just drink plain water, if it is completely unusual, then tasteless tea, coffee, boiling water or fruit water.
How can I get rid of the habit of eating sweets? You need to know how much table sugar you eat each day. For the measurement, it is recommended to use a real measuring spoon and not just a teaspoon.
Try to reduce the amount of sweetener in your coffee or tea by at least one scoop per week. When drinking juices, it is best to dilute them in half with plain water. At the grocery store, get used to reading labels. A significant portion of sugar is found in processed foods and beverages.
It is important to understand that reducing your sugar intake to zero is not your goal. Yes, this is impossible. It is necessary to seriously reconsider the priorities and to consciously approach the improvement of health. And then you will be able to eat much less sugar, maintain a healthy weight and, most likely, not get sick.
The NutriSteppe mobile app developed by the National Center for Healthy Nutrition will tell you how to choose personally healthy foods and dishes and you can get useful knowledge from Almaz Sharman’s book “Halthy Eating and NutriSteppe Technology: A Reliable Path to Sustainable Health” .
By using the TENGRI promo code when installing the app and purchasing useful articles on it, you will receive an additional one month free subscription. You can also use a promo code and receive a 10% discount when purchasing a book at Meloman Online Stores by following the TENGRI link after logging in to the store’s personal account. The book will help in everyday life in choosing healthy meals and foods, something that is extremely important for the prevention and recovery of diseases. Proper nutrition is a prerequisite for active and high quality longevity, a guarantee of health – the main reward for life.