Sugar substitutes, what we call artificial sweeteners are very popular these days due to everyone dieting or having diabetes.
The reason they are so popular is because they have zero calories per gram meaning that people can have a wider range of foods than if they were just eating sugar and calorie restricted diet.
Here are a few healthy artificial sweeteners that are fine for you to eat:
This is recognised as the safest artificial alternative to normal sugar and is derived from the leaves of a stevia plant.
This is not FDA approved in the U.S, therefore it is advertised as a dietary supplement instead of a sweetener. For over 30 years Japan have used Stevia as a sweetener.
There are a couple of negatives of using stevia, it doesn’t caramelise like normal sugar, and therefore it is not used very often in baking.
It is also 250-300 times sweeter than normal sugar and so a lot of people sometimes get carried away and use too much of it. One positive is that it also comes in a liquid which a lot of people prefer.
This is the second safe artificial sweetener. They usually go by the names of xylitol, erythritol and sorbitol and are made from fermenting corn or sugar cane.
One big problem with real sugar is that it causes cavities; a bonus with sugar alcohols is that they have been found to reduce cavities and leave your mouth with a refreshing taste.
Xylitol is toxic to dogs so make sure u keep it away from them.
There have also been reports of people that have ingested too much of these sugar alcohols and ended up with gastrointestinal distress.
Some people may find this artificial sweetener a little controversial as it is made by combining saccharin with maltodextrin and chlorine.
This may sound somewhat strange, however the FDA have not found any health issues with this. Sometimes your food can taste different if you use Splenda for baking so you are better to use half sugar half Splenda to keep the same great taste for your cakes!
Two Artificial Sweeteners to Avoid
Aspartame is what you will find in most low calorie foods and drinks and whilst this maybe less calories than normal sugar, there have been reports of people getting headaches after eating foods with it in.
Once it is broken down, one of its by-products is formaldehyde.
Sweet n Low, which is also known as Saccharin is also one to avoid. This is made from petroleum and is 300 times sweeter than normal sugar.
If you are trying to cut down on having real sugar or trying to stick to a healthier diet, Splenda, Stevia and sugar alcohols are the 3 healthy artificial sweeteners that you should try and stick to.