Healthy Sugar Options

After spending last week in Chicago at the Sweets & Snacks Expo, I realized that healthy snack options in today’s conventional supermarkets are at an all-time low. As a nation we are obsessed with sugar! After seeing all the new sugar-laden products coming to market I have a new understanding as to why our nation’s diabetes and obesity epidemics are still on the rise.

While in Chicago, I read an article in USA Today that estimates obesity could affect 42 percent of Americans by 2030. To be classified as obese, an individual must have a body mass index (BMI) above 30; average BMI for someone in the normal weight range is 18.5-24.9. Calculating your body mass index is simple: multiply your weight in pounds x 703 and divide that number by your height in inches squared. You can find several websites online that will do this calculation for you, such as the National Institutes of Health.

So, is sugar the only cause of the obesity epidemic? No, but it does play a vital role in weight management and overall health. Sugar is in virtually everything found on grocery store shelves, and it’s incredible difficult for most of us to know which types are best for us. With new options like Stevia and Agave, it is easy to be confused about what is healthy and what is not. I personally do not recommend artificial sugars including sucralose and aspartame, which can be found in sugar packets that are pink, blue and yellow. These sugar substitutes have been scientifically altered to be calorie free and do not break down in the human body. For more information on artificial sugars, here’s a great article from the Mayo Clinic. The sugars I recommend are raw honey, pure maple syrup and coconut palm, of course in moderation!

Mary’s Gone Crackers uses organic coconut palm sugar in its line of love Cookies. Not only is coconut palm sugar full of vitamins and minerals, it is also the single most sustainable sweetener in the world! For more information on coconut palm sugar and all of our ingredients, please visit the Your Products section of our website.

Yours in Health,

Valerie Douglass, DTR
Mary’s Gone Crackers

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