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Sweeteners – the most popular keto-friendly sweeteners

Keto diet can be sweet :)
The main assumption of the ketogenic diet is to eliminate carbohydrate-rich foods, such as starch, desserts and processed foods, from the daily menu. Sugar is one of the basic ingredients we are getting rid of our diet in this case. Still, a lot of people don’t want to give up sweet things completely. Luckily alternatives are available.

WHAT SWEETENERS ARE KETO-FRIENDLY?

This is of the most common questions asked, especially by people who have just started their keto journey. 

There are a number of sweeteners available on the market, but today I would like to focus on most popular ones I have found in a lot of keto-friendly recipes. 

ERYTHRITOL

Obtained in the fermentation process, erythritol is a sugar alcohol. It is a 100% natural sweetener that has no calories. It may sound confusing because based on nutritional information included on packaging erythritol is pure carbohydrate but, it’s not metabolized by the human body and it is removed completely in the urine within 24 hours. 

Erythritol has about 70% of the sweetness of white sugar but has no effect on glucose or insulin levels. Therefore, it can be safely used by diabetics. 

It doesn’t taste exactly like sugar but it leaves quite a unique cooling sensation on the tongue. The sweetener is commonly used in cooking and baking recipes and all kinds of ketogenic desserts.

Erythritol shouldn’t be used in large amounts as it may cause bloating, gas and diarrhea in some people. So please be really careful and watch how your body reacts.

Stevia

Stevia is a plant native to South America. This naturally sourced, zero-calorie sweetener has been used as a natural sugar substitute and flavouring ingredient for hundreds of years.

Stevia has no calories and no carbs. It also doesn’t have any impact on blood sugar or insulin levels. This sugar substitute is 200-350 times sweeter than white sugar and can have a slightly bitter aftertaste.

It can be sold as liquid, powdered or granulated. When sold in granulated form, it’s mixed with other sweeteners like for example erythritol. Always check the ingredients label to avoid unnecessary fillers.

XYLITOL

Like erythritol, xylitol is a sugar alcohol derived from plants. It’s a low-carb sweetener that is commonly used in sugar-free gums and mouthwashes. 

It has quite a low glycemic index of 13, and only 50% is absorbed by the digestive tract. It is safe for diabetics. 

Xylitol is extremely toxic for dogs and other pets, so make sure you store it in a safe place.

Granulated xylitol can be used in coffee or tea as well as in baking.

Monk Fruit

The monk fruit is also known as the ‘’Buddha fruit’’. It’s a fruit grown in Southeast Asia. 

Monk fruit sweetener is a natural, zero-calorie sweetener. It is high in unique antioxidants called mogrosides, which make it 100–250 times sweeter than regular sugar. Often monk fruit sweetener is mixed with other natural products, such as inulin or erythritol, to reduce the intensity of its sweetness.

Since monk fruit sweetener has zero calories or carbs, it will not raise blood sugar levels. Therefore, it may be a good option for people with diabetes.

Even though the monk fruit has been known for hundreds of years now, it only became popular quite recently. In Europe this sweetener is still quite hard to find and it’s much more expensive than other sugar alternatives.

sources

products used and suggested for this recipe

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