for Natural News on June 30, 2011
Over the last two years, we've witnessed a mass exodus away from agave nectar and a search for more natural sweeteners that are both low on the glycemic index and high in nutrient density. Several candidates have emerged, but my all-out favorite has become coconut sugar, which is really more like a coconut caramel sap.
This sweetener is fast becoming extremely popular among raw foodies, vegans and vegetarians. Many have switched from agave nectar to coconut sugar for all the reasons I'm covering here.
The coconut sugar (sap) I've been using is a 100% pure organic crystallized coconut sap from Thailand. It's harvested from the sap of unopened coconut blossoms, then boiled under controlled heat to drive off the water and condense the liquid to a dark brown sap. There are no additives used, no bleaching, and absolutely no stripping of minerals or other nutrients. It's not a raw food, however. Cooking the sap is a necessary part of concentrating it, just like with maple syrup, which is really a concentration of the watery maple sap.
The result is a thick, liquid "caramel" sap that's brown in color and extremely sweet. It tastes almost like fudge, and some people even eat it like fudge. (Intense sweetness!) I use it in smoothies, where I've found it to offer the most full-spectrum sweetness taste from any natural sweetener I've ever tried. Agave nectar was great, but coconut sugar is so much better -- it actually reminds me of the richness of raw cane sugar juice that I used to drink in South America.
Learn more: http://www.NaturalNews.com/032855_coconut_sugar_natural_sweeteners.html#ixzz1Qn6G6LP7