The Best Natural Sweeteners: Healthy Alternatives

| Modified on Jul 02, 2022
Stevia Feedback
Posted by Laurie (IL) on 10/05/2014
1 out of 5 stars

Warning

I read in the COPD  section of Earth Clinic, I believe, about all or most STEVIA having Maltodextrin added and the dangers of it. I have COPD severely and have to use a powdered steroid that costs me out of my own pocket because I don't have insurance 350.00. I'm suppose to use this 3 times a day but I milk it the best I can and have had a miserable existence for almost two years now. After reading about the maltodextrin I got my stevia out and sure enough! I stopped using it and only use raw honey now in my coffee and I have only had to use the steroid one time since. I breath much much better now and only now have to use my nebulizer twice a day and only a few puffs.. I feel much much better!!! One of the side effects of maltodextrin, I read online, is BREATHING DIFFICULTIES!

Saccharin Background
Posted by charity (faithville, us) on 07/01/2022

I use xylitol for saliva control and it helps a lot. I don't cook with it but what I cook is just basic simple low on bad ingredients. Bland. I sprinkle it in my mouth here and there as needed for the past year or so.

Xylitol: Everything You Need to Know (healthline.com)

Our government is getting a divine reset, so things are going to be amazing in 2023. Get ready for pain in your cheeks from all the smiling he he he : )


Erythritol
Posted by Gertjr (Madison) on 07/25/2020

Yes. The 'ol' at the end means it's an alcohol sugar. Any of those, such as xylitol, can upset your stomach. They do have good uses, as xylitol is know to be a virus killer, but too much will upset any stomach. Only you know how much you can tolerate.


Stevia Feedback
Posted by Sheila (Ky) on 01/08/2018

If you are allergic to ragweed it's in the same family as stevia!


Xylitol Feedback
Posted by Art (California) on 08/10/2020 1386 posts

I think the sweetner with an "M" that you are thinking of might be mannitol.

Xylitol, to me tastes closest to sugar and is anti-candida in the sense that you are eliminating the sugar that the candida feeds on.

Art


Stevia Feedback
Posted by GertJr (Madison) on 12/09/2021

I just looked at my stevia and dextrose is the main ingredient. I tried xylitol and couldn't get my coffee to taste right, it says use same as sugar but it didn't taste right. The stevia was so much better and now I know why, because it was dextrose (pretty much regular sugar). I've got a glucose meter, I'll test my sugar in the morning (fasting), drink my cup of coffee with this so-called stevia and see what it shows then. ugggh. So much for avoiding sugar.


Saccharin Background
Posted by Nsgrace2 (Lorain, Ohio) on 11/26/2009
1 out of 5 stars

Warning

warning on saccharin - A few years ago I decided that I was going to lose weight. I began drinking a lot of coffee and was using saccharin to sweeten my coffee. Then my mom told me about an article she just read in a national tabloid about saccharin being bad for your kidneys. Within a week, I had to go to the doctor because I was so sick I lost 10 pounds in 3 days. Everything I ate tasted like it was spoiled so I did not want to eat. The doctor told me I had a kidney infection so bad that I would have to go the hospital if I had waited any longer to go see him. Since then, I have refrained from using saccharin.


Saccharin Background
Posted by Mark (VA) on 07/01/2022

I have watched the film "Sweet Misery" It is about Aspartame and how it got approved by evil means, it goes through the FDA process and shows their unrelenting corruption. Please watch it to at least realize you must find info outside of the FDA and most tests of safety 90% are done just to promote a product and really have no science of any value to show they are safe. Our government gives us about 15% of the value it should on a good day.


Stevia Feedback
Posted by Joy (Battleground, Wash) on 05/07/2013
0 out of 5 stars

my spouse loves the stuff but I ate 2 packs friday and 4 on saturday, I normally don't eat it. I took a turn for the worse in my health . [email protected]%$<# First it felt like I was in the ocean and waves were washing in and out DIZZINESS :(

next day felt a little NAUSEA and had to step up on papapa and betafood, last night I got extremely BLOATED and drank some cranberry juice in the middle of the night. Then I felt TINGLING when I went to lay down last two nights and my ears were RINGING.....:() I woke up with a dry mouth and I drink water in the right amounts for my weight and I felt like my BLOOD SUGER was out of balance. I haven't eaten any junk food in at least 4 days. NOTHING. I don't have high or low blood sugar normally.

Since friday I had to increase the dose of my meds to keep my MUSCLE PAIN symptoms from overwhelming me. Last night was monday and woke up with high blood pressure 135/98, dry mouth , panics and had to call 1-800- 759- 0700 prayer line for help. Finally calmed down but didn't get any sleep. Still feel sick today! My blood pressure is normally at 100/70 ish and my heart was racing.

I'm glad this works for some people and helps their symptoms.... Please be careful... I just assumed since spouse loves it for years on end it would be okay. NOT

A website has all these as side effects for STEVIA. I may need to take some baking soda today in water and neutralize this stuff.

Stevia Feedback
Posted by Doddie (Lawrenceville, Georgia, Usa) on 08/24/2011
1 out of 5 stars

Warning

@Nicole from Portland, you are right. Twice I bought the white Stevia. One from the health food store and one from a grocery market. Both had an after taste like poison! I was at a food co-op, they had a coffee substitute and the greenish brown stevia powder to sample and it was delicious! I read ingredients on the back of the store bought brand, the main ingredient is maltodextrin and (stevia extract) rebiana so the finished product is not stevia.. This stuff is just as bad as other artificial sweeteners (look it up). Read the labels and know what your are buying, the junk is hidden in small print!


Stevia Feedback
Posted by Sheila (Ky) on 01/08/2018
0 out of 5 stars

It is in the ragweed family! So many people are highly allergic to ragweed and react badly to stevia! I suffered for years before I figured out it was the stevia was making me ill!


Stevia Feedback
Posted by Purrrtrice (Pacific Northwest) on 04/03/2016
0 out of 5 stars

I have recently started using Stevia in iced tea (made the old fashioned way with tea bags) and I have been ITCHING like crazy! The timeline indicates that, perhaps, it might be the Stevia. The brand I use says it's GMO Free. However - I see that the ingredients are "Dextrose, Reb A (Stevia Extract) and 'Natural' Flavors. Just wondering if anyone knows if any of these ingredients could cause itching? ("Natural Flavors" sounds sketchy to me)

Stevia Feedback
Posted by Om (Hope, Bc Canada) on 10/05/2014

Laurie --- for sure, they also put the dangerous artificial sweeteners into Stevia.

I purchase Stevia from Real Raw Food who warned about aspartane being added. But they have the pure stevia. Aspartane has recently been given yet another name because of the lawsuits. Chameleon tactics.

I stay away from everything that costs $$$$, mother nature has lots to offer upon investigation. And it works and heals.

Namaste Om


Stevia Feedback
Posted by Kathy (the USA) on 05/08/2013

How distressing... Hope you are on the road to mend... I am reluctant to try anything that has not been around long enough for long-term studies to prove. With the changing of our food supply I don't believe they can be done. Besides that, the FDA does not have the funding nor the facilities for such. My first post on EC was the distress of the FDA truly being the Fool and Deceive Agency.


Xylitol
Posted by Veronica (Edmonton, Queensland) on 03/06/2013
5 out of 5 stars

Hi great site, just want to share what I found out about xylitol. Its a sugar alternative, a wood alcohol. Safe for diabetics, as a very low GI (7) and as sweet as sugar. Can't be used in breadmaking as it won't let yeast grow.

It inhibits growth of Streptococcus pneumoniae as well as attachment of Haemophilus influenzae on the nasopharangeal cells.

So as sugars enhance the growth of bacterias, this won't let them adhere to cells. A simplified explanation.

But even more exciting is its beneficial effects for chronic middle ear infections (esp children), and dental health, yeah amazing!!

6 grams a day for dental health as it inhibits the growth of the bacteria in the mouth that cause caries, which allows the appropriate systems to help with the re enamailizing of the teeth. ( check out other dental sites which sell products like chewing gum and toothpaste - bugger off fluoride! ).

It doesn't get used by the body as an energy source. No known toxicity. It has a laxative effect as sugar alcohols are not fully broken down during digestion.

Can make a saline solution with xylitol ( sea salt, xylotol and water, I made a solution of equal teaspoons of each, and gargled regularly for onset of Strep throat). Nasally administered, reduced ear & sinus complaints by 92%.

Medical trials have been done, check out the site.

Cheers Veronica


Stevia Feedback
Posted by Jenstamp (Scottsdale, Az) on 06/26/2011

I'm a huge user of Stevia in the liquid form and glad you like it It's a derivative from a natural plant and is used in other countries. I have never read anything that suggests a warning. However the FDA is currently researching (although I have very little faith in FDA and their motives).


Erythritol
Posted by Meredith (Hollywood, Md, Usa) on 06/26/2013

It's classified as a sugar alcohol.


Xylitol Feedback
Posted by Steve (West Palm Beach, FL) on 07/13/2009
5 out of 5 stars

Xylitol gave me noteable relief from my sinus issues.

I made a 10 percent Xylitol and distilled water solution (no saline) and ran it through my nasal pulsator and felt relief within an hour. Now on my second day I still feel better and made a nasal spray using an old empty nasal spray device.

Xylitol is a natural sugar our bodies create 10mg per day of the stuff!!! It is 5 bucks at whole foods for a decent size container.

Don't believe me...research it yourself on the web...it is a food not a chemical...the FDA says it is just about completely safe (of course nothing is safe used improperly)...thge bacteria think it is their food (sugar) but it is sugar alcohol so they can't metabolize it and the bacteria wash out of your sinuses.

Many people on the web say the above and I have finally gotten some relief and I think this is a safe method and I encourage all nasal sinus sufferers to check it out.

I wish I had read this (my own) "blog" a year ago.

I tried it all...5 rounds of antibiotics...MMS...GSE...tomatoe tea...Xylitol seems like I finally have a clue how to get better.

Xylitol Feedback
Posted by Linda (Alpharetta, Ga) on 09/15/2011

I tried Xylotol several times and I always ended up with diarrhea and tummy ache and so did my family. I also used Xylotol toothpaste hoping it would reduce plaque, since my saliva is very acidic, but it did not make any difference.

I do love stevia. I have been using Stevia now for more than 1 year.


Xylitol Feedback
Posted by April (Pleasant Grove, Utah) on 06/13/2009

To Bonnie from Sanford, Florida,

Hey there! Sorry to hear about your little ones. I used to work for a company that sold xylitol products. The reason your little ones got so sick is because xylitol is hydrophylic meaning it draws moisture to itself. When xylitol is used in a large amount in a liquid... like syrup or kool-aid it's going to have a laxative effect on almost anyone regardless of age. I do feel that xylitol is still a good choice as a sugar substitute, just remember that simple rule when preparing food with it. NO LARGE AMOUNTS IN A LIQUID. Cookies, brownies, etc.. you should be fine. Plus you're eliminating the spike in blood sugar and making a good choice for your teeth and gums. Hope this helps!


Maple Syrup
Posted by Gabrielle (Pottsville, PA) on 12/14/2008
5 out of 5 stars

I found your site just a couple days ago and I'm already touting it everywhere I go! Just wanted to add that (REAL) Maple Syrup is an excellent source of potassium, calcium, magnesium, and manganese. It also has trace amounts of PP (Niacin), B5 (Pantothenic Acid), B2 (Riboflavin), Folic Acid, B6 (Pyridoxine), Biotin, Vitamin A, and amino acids. It's a wonderful and healthy alternative to refined sugar! I see where many posts include the use of honey, but Maple Syrup seems to be taking a back seat to it here.

Keep up the great work here (I've learned so much the past two days - Thanks!) and I'll keep telling everyone I know about your site! :)


Xylitol Feedback
Posted by Laurie (Lynn, Massachusetts) on 12/02/2008

I've never tried Xylitol but I have tried AGAVE and I have to tell everyone that this stuff is really good! It comes from the Agave plant in Mexico and is a great sweetener that even diabetics can have. It comes in a light color which is alot like honey and a dark amber color which is a bit like maple syrup. Each one has a great flavor and no aftertaste at all!!! It is very good!!! Google Agave and find out all about it.


Xylitol Feedback
Posted by Azna (U.S.A.) on 08/10/2020

Several years ago, I was using pure agave as a sweetener in my smoothies. I started getting pain in my liver area. I became alarmed.

Around that time, I received an email from Dr. Mercola which featured agave, among other topics of discussion. I am on his email subscription list. In that article, Dr. Mercola said that agave can cause liver failure because it causes the same reaction in the body as high fructose corn syrup. I stopped using agave after that. My liver pain started decreasing. I am still trying to find a sweetener which is anti-candida and which is good for diabetics to use, although I am not diabetic or have hyperglycemia at present. I may be pre-diabetic.

I use maple syrup but am wondering if it is good for me. I do not use honey because I am a vegan.

I also have tried an organic, liquid, monk fruit extract but it has an aftertaste and I want something I can use to sweeten my tea without having to use a ton of sweetener. With the monk fruit extract, my tea did not taste sweet even after using a ton of drops in one cup, and it is not inexpensive, either.

I had read years ago about a diabetic-friendly sweetener that starts with the letter "m" but I cannot recall what it was. It is not maltodextrin or d'mannose. It was supposed to be the best sweetener for diabetics. However, even then it was not inexpensive. I wish I could recall the name of this particular sweetener. I have also tried coconut sugar, coconut nectar, etc. I love coconut nectar but again, it is not that sweet. It is not as sweet as maple syrup.

I read that maple syrup is a healthy sweetener but I tend to use 4 tablespoons or 5 tablespoons in my banana-sesame smoothie and I am worried that it might be contributing to tingling, numbness, and capillary damage in the tips of my fingers and in the bottom of my feet. I have tried stevia but did not care for the aftertaste or the fact that it is processed.

Green leaf stevia did not sweeten my beverages at all. I have also tried brown rice syrup, molasses, etc. I am still looking for that perfect sweetener. I may not find it, but I will continue trying. I have tried date sugar and dates also. I am thinking of buying organic fruit powders to sweeten my beverages but they are expensive and I am not sure that they will sweeten my beverages as sweet as I want them to be.


Xylitol Feedback
Posted by Cindy (Illinois, Usa) on 08/11/2020 337 posts

Re sweetener with an "m" - could you be talking about monk fruit?


Stevia Feedback
Posted by Christine (Virginia Beach, USA) on 04/20/2008

Regarding saccarhin and stevia: Saccarhin is a known carcinogin and ought not be in the American food supply. See: http://www.doctoryourself.com/fakesweet.html

In addition, stevia possesses medicinal properties that have been known and used for centuries by South American Indians to help lower blood sugar, high blood pressure, and is a cardiotonic. Modern medical research has confirmed their views.

In addition, research has demonstrated that stevia is an antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal agent. See: http://www.rain-tree.com/stevia.htm


Stevia Feedback
Posted by Candace (San Francisco, CA) on 03/12/2008
5 out of 5 stars

Being allergic to sugar and knowing how evil artificial sweeteners are, I have found Stevia as a marvelous substitute. My ears have stopped ringing, my skin has cleared up, and I no longer crave diet sodas. Stevia is all natural and has no side effects - at least that I have found to date. As stated, "Stevia has a negligible effect on blood glucose, even enhancing glucose tolerance."

It is "a native to subtropical and tropical South America and Central America." "Millions of Japanese people have been using stevia for over thirty years with no reported or known harmful effects.[32] Similarly, stevia leaves have been used for centuries in South America spanning multiple generations in ethno-medical tradition as a treatment of type II diabetes." Wikipedia

Stevia Feedback
Posted by Lori (La Pine, Or) on 01/24/2013
0 out of 5 stars

Please be careful with stevia. I was consuming it in my teas and daily vitamin drinks, and found I had problems swallowing pills and breathing... Would sit in my recliner and just gasp for breath! This went on for a considerable time before I figured out the cause was the stevia! There can be side effects to anything you consume and we all need to use caution and be a food detective!


Saccharin Background
Posted by Pamela (Coloma, MI) on 05/24/2007
5 out of 5 stars

This maybe of interest to everyone as Stevia is from a plant. So is Saccharin, or Tolu Balsam Tree.

Saccharin Discovery

sweetness was accidentally discovered by Ira Remsen, a professor at Johns Hopkins University, and Constantine Fahlberg, a research fellow working in Remsen's lab. In 1879, while working with coal tar derivatives (toluene), Remsen discovered saccharin's sweetness at dinner after not thoroughly washing his hands, as did Fahlberg during lunch. Remsen and Fahlberg jointly published their discovery in 1880.[2] However, in 1884, Fahlberg went on to patent and mass-produce saccharin without ever mentioning Remsen. Fahlberg grew wealthy, while Remsen merely grew irate.[3] On the matter, Remsen commented, "Fahlberg is a scoundrel. It nauseates me to hear my name mentioned in the same breath with him". Saccharin was an important discovery, especially for diabetics. Saccharin goes directly through the human digestive system without being digested. It does not affect blood insulin levels, and has effectively no food energy.

The name toluene was derived from the older name toluol that refers to tolu balsam, an aromatic extract from the tropical American tree Myroxylon balsamum, from which it was first isolated. It was originally named by Jöns Jakob Berzelius.

Stevia Feedback
Posted by Gwen (Lakewood, Colorado) on 05/16/2007
5 out of 5 stars

For those of us that Love our sugar & sweets, Sugar, aspartame, & other dangerous sweetener's can be replaced with StevIa which is a plant, tree I think. Not sure if it has any real health value beyond replacing sugar, which is a huge health benefit alone. You can buy at the health store.


Stevia Feedback
Posted by Sharon (Henryette, OK) on 01/20/2007
5 out of 5 stars

I use stevia, and believe in it completely. I grow my own stevia, and was wondering how to process it. right now i just air dry it and keep it in jars. Sharon

Stevia Feedback
Posted by Pat (Dowagiac, MI) on 01/19/2009

Romona, I live in Michigan and grow Stevia successfully. Here's how - get the seeds started the beginning of March. Plant out after the end of May, and when I plant, I put compost and a handfull of cow manure at the base of each plant, and then put mulch around them. I use shredded paper, with homemade mulch on top. It will be ready to harvest just before 1st frost. If you see any flowers start, harvest it right away. I pull the whole plant, tie several together by the roots, and hang from the rafters in the garage for a few weeks till they are thoroughly dry. Pull off the leaves and crush or put in a blender or processor to make a fine green powder. Anything you put it in, will turn green though - just a warning.


Stevia Feedback
Posted by Karen (Destin, FL) on 01/25/2009
5 out of 5 stars

Hi. I grow stevia too, it's very easy, grows like a weed. In fact, I don't harvest the whole plant, I just let it die down in the winter then in spring it pops up again.


Erythritol
Posted by Nancy (New Hope, Pa) on 07/24/2020
0 out of 5 stars

I want to know if erythritol has made anyone feel sick?

Healthy Chewing Gum
Posted by Bradshad (North Providence, Rhode Island) on 04/06/2013

I there any acceptable gum I can chew once a day while dealing with yeast issues. I was told from ND that is was not candida but I have yeast going on and was wondering how to fix a sweet craving so I figured I could chew a piece of gum from time to time. Any help would be great. Thanks in advance, Brad.

Healthy Chewing Gum
Posted by Joy (Battleground, Wash) on 04/06/2013

coconut oil helps regulate blood sugar and since using it my mouth is clear... Whitened teeth , no siliva to floss from between teeth , no more sensitivies and my tongue is a nice healthy shade of purple red..... I brush with it and eat it and put a blob in my mouth before bed.

Find a coconut oil or meat gum and that would be great... Let me know if such a thing is out there


Molasses
Posted by Rashed (Toba Tek Singh, Punjab, Pakistan) on 03/07/2013

Molasses of cane: molasses is a very good substitute of honey with respect to its nutritional benefits.


Agave
Posted by Ly (Wilmington, Delaware) on 02/28/2013

Is agave a safe sweetener? If and when my husband and I use any kind of sweetener it is blue agave.

Agave
Posted by Sp (Wb, Nj, Usa) on 03/03/2013

Hi Ly, my understanding is that agave syrup is a highly processed sweetener. Personally, I think honey is much safer.



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