I have noticed of late that many people on the various blogs I visit differentiate between artificial sweeteners like aspartame, sucralose (Splenda), saccharine, and such, which are chemically created versus growing naturally.
Stevia is a plant, and the popular natural sweetener that many feel is safe, and it is the one I use for what little sweet I use these days. It is hard to over use stevia since it gets bitter or has a bitter aftertaste if you use too much.
The questionable category includes agave nectar, maple syrup, and honey. Honey is indeed natural, but it is a sugar and for sugaraholics represents a real and present danger of over use. I will have a teaspoon of honey for an upset stomach, but don’t eat it for food, since it is a concentrated sugar which I could easily overdo. Maple syrup requires something like 40 gallons of maple sap to be boiled down into one gallon of syrup, so natural, but certainly highly processed. Agave nectar is similar to maple syrup in that the sap of the agave cactus is reduce for the nectar or syrup; plus there is a lot of product sold as agave that is mainly corn syrup so you have to know which you are getting (this is also a problem with much of grocery store honey, only use local honey or honey from well known producers).
There is certainly a spectrum of possibilities for abuse with any of these products; some people can handle some of these, others cannot. My rule is if you can manage it, then enjoy, but if you use too much and either gain weight or can’t lose and become trapped by cravings, then you know it must go.
Yours in discovery,
Nan aka Sugarbaby
My beloved and I went to the wedding of one his nephews yesterday a situation that I usually worry about a little since both drink and food are plentiful and used to trip me up. I decided to avoid Pitfall #1, or alcohol, which then made it far less likely that I would hit Pitfall#2 and eat anything I shouldn’t. I was very happy with my club soda and lime, then the supper buffet had some lovely roasted meats, chicken, and a lots of crudite and green salad. I did skip the cake, but didn’t mind that.
The problem with parties for most of us is apt to be the liquor, for if you are on a low carb/HFLC/Paleo type of diet you are much more susceptible to the effects of alcohol which goes straight to the liver and then the brain. I find that just one glass of wine or spirits can make me a bit silly; as a result I try to avoid it unless I’m home when for whatever reason I seem less likely to want more than one. One-and-done is our family motto with alcohol, and for the most part it works for me. But three times I got very tipsy, in my early no sugar-starch-artificial sweetener days, on just a couple glasses of wine, which is a feeling I particularly dislike. I want to be in control of my faculties. Most people who drink too much make themselves ridiculous, and I have witnessed those at every big wedding reception or party.
As I blogged earlier, this is the beginning of the holiday/party season and it is good to have a plan. My plan yesterday worked well. Besides, I have just as much fun by avoiding the things I would later regret, and don’t feel one iota deprived. So the wedding was a win-win for me, and my spouse who had his one drink, and we came home pleased at having seen family and friends, witnessing the ritual send-off of a sweet young couple on the road to a happy life together, and us safely back to ours .
Yours in the practice,
Nan aka Sugarbaby