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Can Sugar be Part of a Healthy Diet?

With all the headlines surrounding the evils of sugar, you may start to question whether sugar belongs in our diet at all. So let’s skip all the confusion and get down to the basics of what sugar is, what it does, and what ingredients we use at Mother Raw to naturally sweeten our products.

What Does Sugar Do In Our Bodies?

Sugar is a type of carbohydrate that breaks down into glucose in our bodies to help supply energy to our cells. We need glucose every day to help keep our brains functioning and our bodies running.

However, refined sugars, like high fructose corn syrup, do not provide any additional nutritional benefits. They also spike our blood sugar quickly. This may lead to diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and some cancers.

More complex carbs, like whole grains, take time for our bodies to digest and don’t increase blood sugar as much. At Mother Raw, we never add refined sugars to our products and only use the natural sugars directly from nature.

“Natural” vs “Refined” Sugars

There’s a huge difference between natural and refined sugars!

  • Natural sugars are those found naturally in whole foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and grains. These natural sources of sugar pack a punch in terms of nutrition, flavour, and satiety.
  • Refined sugars are those that are heavily processed and added to products to increase their sweetness. Foods with added sugars are often low in nutrients but high in calories, leading to negative health effects.

Do I Need to Avoid Sugar to be Healthy?

The short answer is no. Our bodies NEED sugar. If we completely cut out sugar, we’ll be missing out on a bunch of foods and nutrients. Not to mention, it’s just not sustainable!

Although we don’t need to cut out sugar, we should all be more mindful about our refined sugar consumption because they don’t have any health benefits. Remember that not all sugars are created equal and not all are bad.

What Mother Raw Uses to Sweeten

At Mother Raw, we use natural sweeteners like dates, maple syrup, coconut sugar, and mission figs. They add great flavour and helps to create a texture that lets you pour, dip, and spread on the good. We do not use any refined sugars and only use what Mother Earth gave us. Check out some of the rawesome health benefits of the natural sweeteners we use:

The Bottom Line

Sugar can be part of a healthy diet when it is consumed in an appropriate amount since a balanced diet for a healthy body and mind includes eating carbs. Where you get your sugar is what really matters.

Author: Terri-Lin Zhou 

 

Rawesome References

Dietitians of Canada. (2016). Added Sugars; Healthy Eating Tips. Practice-based Evidence in Nutrition® [PEN]. Retrieved from: https://www-pennutrition-com.ezproxy.lib.ryerson.ca/viewhandout.aspx?Portal=UbY=&id=J8HrUAI=&PreviewHandout=bA==

Health Canada. 2005. Canadian Nutrient File, 2005 Version. Available at: https://food-nutrition.canada.ca/cnf-fce/newSearch-nouvelleRecherche.do?action=new_nouveau

McDermott, A. (2016). The Health Benefits of Figs. Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health/figs

Thalheimer, J. (2015). Alternative Natural Sweeteners. Retrieved from https://www.todaysdietitian.com/newarchives/011315p18.shtml

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