If you’ve ever been on a detox diet, you were most likely told to stop eating sugar as part of the plan. If you’re trying to clear up yeast or acne, you may have been warned to avoid sugar and alcohol. Fine, you thought. I can have my tea without sugar, and I don’t drink soda anymore. I’ll have soda water with lime at the party this weekend.
But watch out:
Added sugars lurk everywhere, even in places we’ve come to know and love. Health food stores are stocked with treats that look healthy and come in cute wrappers, which lead us to think the food inside must be good for us — or at least better for us than the bag of Oreos we used to buy. Just because something is called a nectar doesn't mean it's healthy.
A sugar is any chemically-related, sweet-tasting carbohydrate, most of which are consumed as food. Most are derived from plants, but sugars can exist in many tissues, and just because something is derived from a plant doesn’t mean it’s healthy.
True, many of the sweeteners listed below offer more nutrition than the refined white crystal sugar you find in a sugar packet. For instance, blackstrap molasses contains a good amount of iron, and raw honey offers enzymes and antioxidants. Still, these “natural sweeteners” are sugar to your body.
Whether you’re doing a cleanse, clearing up your skin, growing your energy, or reducing your pain, eliminating added sugars and natural sweeteners is a great experiment. It can be hard to avoid all the natural sweeteners that are really sugar unless you put on your food detective hat at the store.
Here are 41 names for sugar you should keep an eye out for: