Less Is More

Re­place the su­gar in your diet with 100 per cent nat­u­ral Ste­via if you want to stay svelte and healthy for a long time

Simply Her (Singapore) - - Home & Food | Taste Test -

It is hardly a rev­e­la­tion that too much sweet stuff is bad for us. Doc­tors, den­tists and di­eti­cians have long cau­tioned against con­sum­ing too much su­gar. And the ill ef­fects of ex­cess su­gar con­sump­tion – weight gain (which in­creases your risk of di­a­betes), high blood pres­sure and heart disease – are well-doc­u­mented. But just how much dam­age can an ex­tra serv­ing of cake in­flict?

As with ev­ery­thing, the devil is in the de­tails. Stud­ies show that ex­cess su­gar de­creases our bod­ies’ im­mu­nity. Ev­ery two-and-a-half cans of sug­ared soda, for in­stance, which con­tain about eight ta­ble­spoons of su­gar, de­crease the abil­ity of white blood cells to kill germs by up to 40 per cent.

Another study shows that it isn’t easy for peo­ple to limit their su­gar con­sump­tion. With each seem­ingly harm­less ex­tra spoon­ful of su­gar in our cof­fee or tea, we feed our brains’ “re­ward nerve cen­tre”, which gets more re­sis­tant with re­peated ex­po­sure. The more su­gar we eat, the more we need.

The good news is that most of the bad stuff is caused by re­fined su­gar. And while we might find it hard to give up, re­plac­ing it is a much more vi­able op­tion.

An all-nat­u­ral su­gar al­ter­na­tive is found in the sweet ste­via herb, which has been No.1 in health-con­scious coun­tries such as Ja­pan since the 1970s. The ste­via plant is cul­ti­vated in good-qual­ity soil in sev­eral con­ti­nents, then it is dried and soaked in wa­ter just like brew­ing tea. Mod­ern tech­nol­ogy is used to pu­rify the sweet ex­tract re­sult­ing in a clean and low-calo­rie nat­u­ral in­gre­di­ent suit­able for ev­ery­one in­clud­ing di­a­bet­ics and veg­e­tar­i­ans. Great with hot and cold bev­er­ages such as iced le­mon tea, as well as in whole­some break­fast ce­re­als, oat­meal, sal­ads and desserts, one stick or tablet of Equal Ste­via pro­vides sweet­ness equiv­a­lent to one tea­spoon of su­gar. Even bet­ter, it con­tains only 0.4 calo­ries a serv­ing, 98 per cent less than reg­u­lar su­gar.

Equal Ste­via comes in packs of 40 sa­chet sticks ($7.40) and 200 tablets ($12.35), and is avail­able at lead­ing su­per­mar­kets

and phar­ma­cies.

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