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Zero Calorie Sugar Substitutes

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If you are convinced that avoiding sugar/carbohydrate improves your rosacea or other skin issue, yet you have a sweet tooth, you probably are on a search for zero calorie sugar substitutes. Of course, in the USA, the ones offered are massive, which a partial list is shown below may have zero calories or at the very least low calories. 

sugarsubstitutes.png
Image courtesy of Rosacea 101: Includes the Rosacea Diet, Brady Barrows

So which one should you use? Of course, your preference is the king of decisions, but which one would be the most natural or healthiest one to use in this list?

Stevia
For years, Stevia was the one most health authorities choose. However, according to Healthline, "The use of stevia in foods is a bit confusing. The FDA Trusted Source hasn’t approved whole leaf or crude stevia extracts as a food additive. Despite being used for centuries as a natural sweetener, the FDA considers them unsafe. They claim literature indicates stevia in its most natural form may affect blood sugar. It may also affect reproductive, renal, and cardiovascular systems."

Medical News Today points out, "Some people have allergic reactions to steviol glycosides that are not extremely pure. Stevia is part of the Asteraceae plant family, which includes daisies, sunflowers, and chrysanthemums. Anyone with allergies to these plants or others in the family should avoid stevia products."

Luo Han Guo (Monk Fruit or Siraitia grosvenorii)
Therefore, Luo Han Guo (Siraitia grosvenorii or monk fruit) is emerging as a better choice. The safety is beyond any doubt since it is generally recognized as safe (GRAS) by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. "The plant is most prized for its sweet fruits, which are used for medicinal purposes and as a sweetener. In traditional Chinese medicine, it is used for cough and sore throat and in southern China it is believed to be a longevity aid. The fruits are generally sold in dried form, and traditionally used in herbal tea or soup." [1]

320px-Fructus_Momordicae.jpg
(image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

Monk Fruit 
"The interior fruit is eaten fresh, and the rind is used to make tea. The monk fruit is notable for its sweetness, which can be concentrated from its juice. The fruit contains 25 to 38% of various carbohydrates, mainly fructose and glucose. The sweetness of the fruit is increased by the mogrosides, a group of triterpene glycosides (saponins). The five different mogrosides are numbered from I to V; the main component is mogroside V, which is also known as esgoside." [1]

Monk fruit is available in liquid, granule, and powder forms and  is safe for children, pregnant women, and breast-feeding women. Monk fruit gets its sweetness from antioxidant mogrosides. One study found monk fruit extract has the potential to be a low-glycemic natural sweetener. [2] Another study concluded mogrosides may help reduce oxidative stress. [3]

Available in the RRDi Affiliate Store

Namanna Organic Monk Fruit Natural Sweetener

NatriSweet Monk Fruit Extract

Now Foods, Organic Monk Fruit Liquid

End Notes

[1] Siraitia grosvenorii, Wikipedia

[2] Yao Xue Xue Bao. 2009 Nov;44(11):1252-7.
Insulin Secretion Stimulating Effects of Mogroside V and Fruit Extract of Luo Han Kuo (Siraitia Grosvenori Swingle) Fruit Extract
Ying Zhou, Yan Zheng, Jeff Ebersole, Chi-fu Huang

[3] Braz J Med Biol Res. 2013 Nov; 46(11): 949–955.
Antioxidant effect of mogrosides against oxidative stress induced by palmitic acid in mouse insulinoma NIT-1 cells
Q. Xu, S.Y. Chen, L.D. Deng, L.P. Feng, L.Z. Huang, and R.R. Yu

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