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El azucar de Coco- el nuevo alternativo al azucar?

El azucar de Coco- el nuevo alternativo al azucar?

20.04.2011

source: www.yogaearth.com

In the land of sugars, coconut sugar is practically a health food- a new, natural alternative that has far exceeded my expectations in both the practical and nutritional fields. It has a mellow, sweet flavor, no bitter or processed aftertaste, and is a sensational substitute in the testiest of baked goods. I used it in place of honey in my favorite granola recipe and replaced the brown sugar in my banana bread. Both delivered excellent results!

Origins
Coconut sugar has been the staple sweetener in South East Asian cultures for thousands of years. The abundance of coconut trees in this area provided easy access to this natural sweetener. Today, most coconut sugar on local shelves is produced in the Philippines, where they refer to the coconut tree as the “tree of life.”

How It’s Made
The flowers of the coconut tree produce a sweet sap that is “tapped” from the tree and boiled down to create the sugar. Similar to maple sugar collection, a slit is made in the flowering area and sap flows into collector buckets below. The collected sap is placed over low heat for a long period of time, and as the water content evaporates, the sap becomes a thick, soft, honey-like syrup. The syrup can be further dried and reduced into large blocks of crystalline sugar, or a granular form.

Avoid the Spike and Crash
One of the best attributes of coconut sugar is its low glycemic impact (meaning it creates less of a blood sugar spike when consumed). Where traditional processed sugars are stripped of their nutrients and enter your body as pure sugar that travels immediately into your bloodstream, coconut sugar keeps blood sugar steady. Its nutrient values require your body to spend more time digesting, absorbing and utilizing available nutrients, increasing the health benefits and prolonging the energy availability. This makes it a good sugar alternative for diabetics, blood sugar sensitive consumers, and anyone looking to avoid that nasty crash.

A Healthier Sugar
Coconut sugar contains significant amounts of potassium, magnesium, zinc, iron, B vitamins and inositol. The vitamin inositol, the most abundant in coconut sugar, is known for its impact on the central nervous system and the development of healthy cells. It can help manage pain, moderate mood disorders and quell anxiety. A sweet treat that leaves you nourished, calm, pain-free and happy? Sounds like a good deal to me.

Get it
Check your local health food store or co-op market. If they don’t carry it, check an Asian foods market or ask your grocer if they can special order it for you. It is important to note, true coconut sugar should contain coconut tree sugar flowers, as it is often mistaken for, and labeled as palm sugar.

Use It
Use coconut sugar in the same proportions you would use regular sugar. A recipe that calls for ½ cup white or brown sugar should work just fine with ½ cup coconut sugar. Check back tomorrow for recipes with coconut sugar in homemade granola and wholesome banana bread.



 
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