"It's in everything!"
(Left: Whole Natural Cane Sugar (looks like dirt almost, but it's the good kind).
Right: Refined Cane Sugar)
The Real & the Fake
Through a lot of articles and documents I read today about the low-down on this very sneaky cane sugar ingredient, I found some very interesting facts I did not know about.
I don't buy the commercialized healthy food products anymore so that's a reason why I haven't come across it so much. A few friends recently brought up how they find that cane sugar is in everything they want to buy. After my younger sis asked me what is cane sugar and if it's good, I decided to give it deeper thought. I remembered that evaporated cane juice/sugar was an ingredient I saw listed on many of those healthy food products I was tempted to buy.
People are becoming aware that cane sugar is the natural kind of sugar with health benefits found in those sweet crystals. That's right, real sugar contains many nutrients such as phosphorus, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, zinc, potassium, vitamin A, vitamin B1, B2, & B6. It contains fiber & is alive with digestive enzymes, making whole cane sugar a low glycemic food. Check it out. Refined sugar rates 64 which is mid-high on the glycemic index. Whole cane sugar rates 30-40. I could go into everything I read about the history and traditional uses of cane sugar, but I'll keep this info short & sweet for the readers.
Sugar cane grows like a tall grass similar looking to a bamboo, made of sugar, nutrients, & water. It originated in New Guinea and is now massively produced in South America and the Caribbean Islands. There are studies on cane sugar having possibilities to aid with weight loss, healing fevers and colds, balancing blood sugar levels with diabetics, preventing tooth decay, supporting the immune system, improving kidney function, & fighting certain types of cancer because of its alkalinity. It is known to strengthen organs such as the stomach, kidneys, heart, eyes, brain, & sex organs. Ancient Indians saw this food as a great source for energy. In India it is used to treat and heal infections and ulcers. Some studies say that cane sugar may be ranking high on the list as a first-aid.
As you have learned, cane sugar is health promoting and is being added to these so called healthy food snacks and beverages. But hold up... there is a catch.
(Oh, I hear you all sighing. Yes I know it's a bummer that the industry can't leave our food aloooone.)
Evaporated Cane Juice, of this modern day, listed on the back of food labels, is not the REAL traditional flowing with nutrients evaporated cane juice. The way manufacturers process it leaves it just a tinsy tiny tad better than refined white sugar. The evaporated cane juice in today's food products is so highly processed & devoid of nutrients that it acts just like refined white sugar digested by in the body.
The traditional real way of making evaporated cane juice is by extracting the juice from the sugar cane and then heating it at a low temperature while stirring it to dehydrate it. It is then formed into a hard brick and then grinded by modern machines. Where modern techniques go wrong with the processing, is that the cane juice is boiled at high temperatures and looses its enzymes and nutrients. The nutrients get left in the Molasses syrup that is one of the two end results of boiling cane sugar. The crystalized sugar, the other end result, is devoid of nutrients and enzymes. In the traditional way, the molasses is still incorporated into the sugar. As the final touch, producers add Sulphur Dioxide & other harmful additives.
The end result of the traditional processing of cane sugar is called Rapadura, or Sucanat, which can be found at your natural health grocery store or if you shop online.
Rapadura, which later was changed to the name of Organic Whole Cane Sugar, is owned by a German company. Sucanat (Sugar Cane Natural) , is owned by a U.S company. Both names are the same good kind of cane sugar.
To share a thought of mine: many of these products containing evaporated cane sugar also have other sneaky and unhealthy ingredients in them. Keep an eye out for some Kombucha brands, "Natural" Lemonade/Juice beverages (on the shelf & refrigerated section), and energy bars. Another great reason to ditch the commercialized heavily processed food products.
I'm not sure if I'd be allowed to post on here pictures of these "healthy" snacks and beverages on my blog, so I won't. But read your labels and don't let companies fool you.
A nourishing & hydrating drink is a blend of pure Sugar Cane juice, Ginger juice, Lime juice, & Coconut Water. This drink has been well known traditionally to aid in the treatment of gonorrhea, cystitis, nephritis, & enlarged prostate.
For more benefits of pure cane sugar juice, click here to visit this article.