Monday, 20 May 2019

sugar replacement in healthy food

There is an epidemic of obesity / overweight related illnesses in the Western world, sugar and refined (high GI) carbohydrates being the main culprits.
healthy food fruit salad & double cream
fruit salad & double cream

The problem with sugar is: no matter what source - sucrose, fructose, maltose, honey, dextrose, glucose syrup - if the sugar is not bound in the fruit or seed it digests far too quickly and we experience a spike in glucose levels.

This can, in the short term, give a boost in energy, but then our digestive system overcompensates and we become lethargic and crave more.

There are artificial and naturally occurring sweeteners that don't possess the calories of sucrose, but they can give false messages to our digestive system AND they leave us accustomed to wanting sweet food. So we've guaranteed ourselves a lifelong problem.

This is a bad idea!

There are many sugarfree alternatives to sweetness that are satisfying and don't lead to blood glucose ups and downs.

Examples: small helpings of cheese, peanuts (1), butter (2)

(1) If peanuts are sold with added oil or sugar (!) make your own instead - 2 minutes with a microwave oven.

(2) butter on a fruit crumble is far more delicious than sugar.

All three of these foods have lots of protein and/or fat so they lower the GI (glycaemic index) of foods they accompany, and they leave us feeling full.

Artificial feelings of hunger / peckishness can arise through boredom and other psychological routes.

Apart from having a bewildering number of interests (I do!) the easiest remedy for most people is exercise; habitual exercise being the best.

If you have lots of commitments at home (work from home, childcare, disability, ...) then there are endless options.

A quality exercise bike is very good, and perfect for people with load-bearing issues in their joints.

There are many exercises that can be performed on a mat using your own weight, particularly pilates and yoga.

An excellent habit that maintains health and weightloss is walking to the shops. This is very common where I live (Bude) and it shows!

Tags: Bude, exercise, healthyfood, obesity, pilates, psychology, sugarfree, weightloss, yoga, peanuts


  1. Many people have problems digesting food, especially as we age. Lactose and gluten are prime examples.

    Some foods contain digestive enzymes, and some of these are easy to come by.

    Bananas, Raw honey, avocados

  2. Bananas contain amylases and glucosidases, two groups of enzymes that break down complex carbs like starch into smaller and more easily absorbed sugars.

    Mangoes contain the digestive enzymes amylases.

    Raw honey (unprocessed) contains
    Diastases: Break down starch into maltose
    Amylases: Break down starch into sugars like glucose and maltose
    Invertases: Break down sucrose, a type of sugar, into glucose and fructose
    Proteases: Break down proteins into amino acids.

    Avocados contain the digestive enzyme lipase.

  3. The keto diet, which seems very effective at combatting obesity and (sometimes) type 2 diabetes, just happens to feature the foods I see growing naturally where i live:

    sheep, poultry, berries ... and apples

    But apples are a disaster for people with type 2, and surely they are a natural food?

    Well ... No. They have been bred from ~crab apples to give a fruit full of sugar that is many times bigger than the crab apple.

    Oh well, free range chicken and soft fruit for tea :)


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