Five Best Sugar Substitutes | Dr. Josh Axe


Hey, guys. Dr. Axe here, Doctor of Functional
Medicine and Founder of draxe.com. Today I’m here to share with you my top five natural
sweeteners and sugar substitutes, and so this is a big deal today. So many people are over
consuming high fructose corn syrup, processed sugar, and just carbs in general. And what I’m going to go over here are my
top five natural sweeteners that many of them, not all of them, that many of them still have
sugar, but it’s much easier for your body to digest and process, and is going to bring
the most health benefits to your body. So whether you’re looking for sugar substitutes
for baking or cooking, or let’s say just something to add in your morning tea or smoothie, these
are going to be the best five natural sweeteners you can use. And to start with, I’m going to go for my
number one natural sweetener, and that’s pure, raw honey. Now when you’re buying honey, you
want it to say raw. You want it to ideally even be from a local source. And so for me,
this is an area here in the area of Nashville, Tennessee, where I’m located. And so again,
this is a form of honey that I love. And let me say this about honey. One of the
reasons it’s so beneficial is that honey that is not just a sugar. It’s actually a food.
Honey doesn’t just contain sugar. It also contains amino acids. It contains specific
types of electrolytes and antioxidants, and antimicrobial compounds that can really support
your body and the health of your body. So pure, raw honey. Now again, you want to use it sparingly, as
the proverbs say. You don’t want to go overboard with using these sweeteners. But one tablespoon,
one to two times daily, is a good, healthy amount that most people can do well with.
So again, pure, raw honey. A few other benefit here of honey is that
it helps reduce allergy symptoms. And the reason it does it is this local pollen, and
this is if you buy local honey, it actually really helps with allergies because it helps
your body adapt to local pollen. It’s kind of natural immunizations over time,
the truth of how we were supposed to adapt to our surroundings, we have in bee pollen,
which is found in pure raw, honey. By the way, there was a study at Texas A&M
University. They found that about 80% of honey on supermarket shelves don’t contain any pollen
whatsoever. That’s why you’ve really got to buy the raw stuff if you want the real deal. Also, raw honey contains antimicrobial properties.
So I don’t just eat honey. I actually use honey, when I get a cut or a wound, I put
it in the area. If you have acne or skin issues, you can put it right on the area. So it can
actually even be used as a form of natural medicine. And some of my favorite ways to use honey
is I use it in the morning with my sprouted, soaked oatmeal sometimes. I’ll put it in a
breakfast smoothie. I’ll use it when I’m making gluten-free pancakes. I’ll use it with some
green tea. Just a little bit of honey in there to sweeten it up. But again, honey, probably
my most used sweetener that I use here on a regular basis. The number two sweetener you should really
consider using on a regular basis, and this is especially good if you have blood sugar
issues, if you’re overweight, or if you have something like diabetes, and that’s Stevia. Stevia is a no-calorie, all-natural sweetener
that comes from the leaf of, actually, a flowering plant. And Stevia, there are many types of
Stevia. Ideally you get full, green-leaf Stevia. Another form of Stevia that’s suitable is
doing Stevia that is basically just ground and part of it is extracted. Now there are other brands out there today
that I am not a fan of, like Truvia, because it’s so highly processed. And they’ll also
add in other chemicals, and they come from GMO corn or add in GMO corn derivatives, and
we all know we don’t want GMOs in our diet. But SweetLeaf, this is one of my favorite
brands I use, this is Stevia. In fact, they even have Stevia flavors. This is, you can
get chocolate Stevia, vanilla Stevia, chocolate-raspberry Stevia, pumpkin pie spice Stevia. So there’s
a lot of different brands. But the great thing about Stevia is there’s
no sugar involved. And so if you do have diabetes or blood sugar issues, or are looking to lose
weight fast, this is a great no-carbohydrate solution.
And again, just like using honey sparingly, you shouldn’t be dumping this in your foods
and going overboard, but just a little bit goes a long way. Just a few drops in your morning tea. I love
this with my herbal teas in the morning. I add a little bit sometimes to something like
a morning smoothie, a little bit to baking goods or if I’m making homemade pudding. I’ll
put this in there with some chia seeds and coconut milk and coconut oil. But again, a little bit of Stevia is great,
especially if you’ve got blood sugar issues or weight loss issues. Try some Stevia, my
second favorite natural sweetener. My number three natural sweetener are dates.
Now dates, we could throw other fruits here into the category, things like raisins, apricots,
other dried fruit, pineapple juices. But the great thing about dates are they’re also very
high in fiber and potassium, as well as other vitamins and minerals. In fact, of all the sweeteners I’m going to
go over, dates have the highest nutrient value. Now in terms of phytochemicals that heal the
body, honey is the highest, but in terms of actually vitamins and minerals and fiber content,
dates are the highest. And that fiber actually slows down sugar absorption. So remember, if we’re comparing this to white
sugar or high fructose corn syrup, dates are not sugar. Dates are a food that contain sugar,
and this food also has fiber and antioxidants, and minerals like potassium, that helps you
slowly absorb sugar and really helps regulate sugar within your body. And so dates are very sweet. And I actually
love making homemade pecan pie. And so when we do different baking at home and do some
of our ingredients, like you’ll find in my “Real Food Diet Cookbook”, you’re going to
see we use dates all the time. You mix some dates with some nut butter, and
you can make food bars at home. You can make protein bars. You can make pies. This is amazing
to add with some pecans and cashews and make a homemade pie crust. And so in baking especially. I make a smoothie at home with some cashew
butter and peaches, and you throw some dates in there. Dates are great, actually, just
to throw in smoothies. And it’s really great if you’re into raw food and vegan foods. Dates
are probably the number one naturally sweetener used. And again, potassium is great for flushing
out toxins. It’s great for balancing electrolytes in the body, so this is great for athletes.
And again, you don’t want to go overboard, but again, dates, a fantastic sweetener. My
number three favorite sweetener. Number four on my list is coconut sugar. You
can see here we have organic coconut palm sugar. We actually have a vanilla flavor.
It’s unrefined. It’s vegan. It’s not GMO. And especially when you’re baking, if you’re
looking for an equal comparison, let’s say you’re baking a cake and you want a recipe
that has the equal amounts of one cup of sugar to one cup of an alternative natural sweetener,
well, here you go. Coconut sugar or coconut palm sugar here is the ideal replacement. We know coconut, juice especially, which is
where a lot of this comes from, the coconut juice is full of potassium. It’s full of electrolytes
and nutrients. So again, if you’re looking for equal comparison that’s nontoxic, non-GMO,
that your body’s going to be able to digest better, organic coconut palm sugar is better. All of these sweeteners, by the way, they’re
lower on the glycemic index. Where regular table sugar scores 100, many of these sweeteners
score closer to a 50, so half the glycemic index. So it’s going to affect your body in
a lesser amount to where it’s not going to cause your energy levels to drop or increase,
spike your insulin levels, increasing your risk of diabetes like a lot of the other sugars
out there today. So this is a great replacement, equal replacement,
to actual table sugar, especially in baking cookies and pies and things like that. And last but not necessarily least in terms
of a natural sweetener is 100% pure, organic maple syrup. And when you buy it, look for
Grade B or even a lower grade, even Grade C. But you want a Grade B maple syrup. This
is USDA organic. And maple syrup we know is a fantastic sweetener.
It’s good especially over things like pancakes and waffles. It’s good in certain recipes
where you want more of that, sort of that earthy flavor along with it. And so again,
100% pure organic maple syrup, another good sweetener to add in. What I would do is get rid of the sugar. By
the way, if you just are using regular sugar in your baking and cooking, the majority of
that sugar is genetically modified. It comes from genetically modified beets and GMO corn. And so if you just see sugar on a food label
that you’re buying or you’re using regular sugar in baking, we know that that is highly
toxic to the body. And why not? It is so easy to replace those fake sugars with real sugar,
these natural sugar substitutes and natural sweeteners to use instead. So remember these five natural sweeteners.
Raw honey; Stevia; dates; coconut sugar; and pure, organic maple syrup. Use those five
natural sugar substitutes and you’re going to be a lot healthier for it while satisfying
your sweet tooth.

100 Replies to “Five Best Sugar Substitutes | Dr. Josh Axe”

  1. Remember though Stevia is in the Asteraceae/Compsitae plant family. This family includes ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds, daisies, and many other plants. IF you have an allergy to any of these plants, you MAY have an allergy to Stevia! I for one cannot use it at all!

  2. The best alternative to sugar for me was cinnamon lol . But the best alternative is none because your taste buds will get use to it amnd most of these will spike insulin level and MIGHT cause some to gain weight. Still a great list if you have a sweet tooth like me GREAT VIDEO.

  3. I'm trying to avoid sugar as much as I can, but thanks, Dr. Josh Axe! I do try to stick to actual honey or occasionally maple syrup or even more rarely if I absolutely have to have a little sweetness, but never ever anymore processed sugar.

  4. Hi Sir , may I pls know what do u think about Light muscovado sugar or cane sugar as sugar substitutes .It was on promotion so I bought it n I hope it's healthier

  5. I noticed no mention of monk fruit. Not so great to bake with but love it in coffee, tea or no bake cookies or fudge.

  6. I have noticed that all these options are expensive. Coconut sugar is about the cheapest that I've found. My fav is monk fruit but I've run out and frankly can't afford any sweetener now. Is amazing how cheap sugar has become now that it's sales are down. This is why the poor are often overweight and having all kinds of health issues I think. I once had a Dr tell me if you can't eat organic and grass fed you're better off just going hungry. You'll eat less but the food will be more nutrient dense and no toxins. And if there is no sweetener other than sugar or sugar alcahols or hfc you should just learn to live without and drink water with lemon. Wish I had that kind of self control. Sorry but I get hungry and is hard to find organic that's affordable.

  7. Dates really are great for baking and not as expensive if you do it right. Soak a dozen dates in just enough hot water to cover them up for an hour and blend it into a paste with whatever kind of blender you have and just experiment.

  8. I use 1/8 of a tsp honey with a few drops of stevie in my coffee to mask the taste of stevie 😅. Sweet leaf brand has maltostelin (?).

  9. I eat once a day low carb with a 4/20 or 8/16 hour window.
    Keep pure monk fruit and raw cane sugar in the house.
    Still experimenting with pure monk fruit it's so powerfully concentrated.
    But so far prefer raw cane sugar for my green tea and coffee.

  10. Honey is mostly fructose, fructose is metabolized as fat in the liver…, fatty liver is linked to insulin resistance. Stevia has zero glycemic response but it increases insulin resistance …. , dates are packed with fructose… (fruit candy), fructose increases fat in between organs.

  11. Dates are not a replacement for sugar, how can you use dates in your coffee or tea. Yes dates can be used in cakes and baked foods.

  12. Honey was used for burns and wounds in ww2 and earlier. I used on a third degree burn every day for 6 mo where the skin was burned down to the fascia and had to grow back from the sides… Worked like a champ, natural anti biotic!

  13. White table sugar is sucrose and has a GI of 65… not 100. Pure glucose on the other hand has a GI of 100. It’s scary the fact that he’s meant to be a doctor and he doesn’t know this.

  14. My #1 sweetener is cane flower sugar….there's no confusion about it on the shelves like honey & in all honesty it's so expensive, you will automatically use it sparingly🌸🌾🌸

  15. Thanks Dr. Axe. You've answered a question I often wondered about. You're much appreciated in all of your videos.👍🏼

  16. I'm looking for a sugar substitute for everything. My daughter was diagnosed with fructose intolerance. I can't remember what was on the list of sweeteners she can have. I'm not sure where I put the list. I do believe stevea and coconut sugar are on the list of can have. I'm not positive about the coconut sugar. I do know that corn sugar and corn syrup solids are on the can have list. Pretty much everything she likes is on the can't have list. And she's pretty picky. She can't have high fructose corn syrup, table sugar, honey, cured lunch meats, fruits, most nuts… Pretty much everything… So I need to find sweeteners for cereals, drinks, baking ect

  17. Is agave nectar any good? I heard it does not spike glucose levels but it is very high in fructose which can be converted into fat quickly.

  18. Why Grade B ? Or Grade C ? You glossed over that and didn't explain what the grades mean. I picked up a bottle of Grade A. Isn't A always better than B which is better than C?

  19. Get Rick Joyner"s book, THE HARVEST, . now at E Bay or Amazon, so now you can fast and pray, Acts 6:4 Acts 13:1 -3 LUKE 2 :36 – 37

  20. Agave and coconut sugar are both very high in fructose. They will both spike your insulin levels, and are HIGHLY TOXIC to your liver and will cause fatty deposits on your liver and gallbladder. Think high FRUCTOSE corn syrup on steroids!

  21. Stevia is the most disgusting thing ever put on the market! It's so bitter and has a horrible after taste. You couldn't pay me to use it!! If you told me it was saccharine I'd totally believe it. Guess some people have varying in their taste buds but I can't stand it and I'm so disappointed that it's used in so many products that I would otherwise love to eat. Can't tell you how many times I've brought back products to the store because of nasty stevia in it. I use organic and or non gmo raw cane sugar, raw organic honey, grade b organic maple syrup and non gmo molasses. That's it. I have no sugar problems!

  22. I wish the USA would stop, stop isn't high fructose corn syrup. Its in EVERYTHING!! Like a nightmare! I'm at the supermarket reading food labels and some foods are now making high fructose free foods. But we should not have to go through this treasure hunt to find foods made without this.

  23. Coconut and Palm have cholesterol the only plant foods the do. Are you a Medical Doctor? Maple Syrup[ metabolized as sugar (glucose) dangerous for diabetics.

  24. Stevia takes awful sort of like artificial sweeteners, that makes me wonder if a few years from now we ll hear how it’s not good and very pressed , is it just me

  25. Dates are good… it is high in iron and increases blood count…

    I have not known about coconut sugar… but yes palm sugar… but these are susceptible to fermentation in warm climates… I'm not very sure of it either…

    Jaggery is another substitute, but has different types… sugarcane and palm… again palm is susceptible to fermentation so i use sugarcane jaggery…

  26. Our food system in America doesn’t want you eating healthy they want you sick so you can go to the doctors and buy medicine.

  27. I was getting Grade B syrup here in San Diego Ca. At the Sprouts market but it seems like they don’t sale it any more!
    Could I use the Grade A syrup?

  28. Dr. Josh, thanks for sharing, you had shared here baking can use one of type sugar in your list #4 or #5, may i know from the ingredients recipe 100g sugar, (do i still use same substitute sugar 100g?)

  29. Jaggery? From my understanding it is one of the most pure un refined sugar complete with micronutrients, minerals etc. and its super tasty! Generally you can pick it up and your local Indian store.

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