In the spirit of valentine's day weekend we wanted to continue on our theme that we’ve been touching on on our instagram this week - aka sugar.
There are 3 different types of sugar; sucrose, glucose and fructose. While they are all technically sugar and taste sweet, the three differ in their chemical structures, the way your body digests and metabolizes them, how they affect your health and the actual sweetness level differs between all three as well.
Sucrose is the scientific name for table sugar - it is added to many processed foods, like candy, soda, baked goods, sauces, etc! Sucrose is digested quickly and causes a dramatic spike and drop in blood sugar and energy. Table sugar and the sucrose found in processed foods are commonly extracted from sugar cane or sugar beets.
Sucrose must be broken down before your body can use it. Enzymes in your mouth partially break down sucrose into glucose and fructose but the majority of sugar digestion happens in the small intestine. The enzyme sucrase, which is made by the lining of your small intestine, splits sucrose into glucose and fructose which is then absorbed into your bloodstream!
Taste: Sucrose actually tastes less sweet than fructose but sweeter than glucose.
Glucose is a simple sugar or monosaccharide and is your body’s preferred carb-based energy source!
Monosaccharides are the building blocks of carbohydrates and since monosaccharides are already in their simplest form, they don’t need to be broken down before your body can use them.
Glucose is absorbed directly across the lining of the small intestine into your bloodstream, which delivers it to your cells, it raises blood sugar more quickly than other sugars, which stimulates the release of insulin, once inside your cells, glucose is either used immediately to create energy or turned into glycogen to be stored in your muscles or liver for future use.
Your body controls and regulates your blood sugar levels so when they get too low, your body sends a signal for glycogen stores to be broken down into glucose and released into your blood to be used for energy, if glucose is unavailable, your liver can make this type of sugar from other fuel sources.
Taste: Glucose is less sweet than fructose and sucrose!
Fructose or “fruit sugar” is a monosaccharide like glucose - it is naturally found in fruit, honey, agave and most root vegetables. Fructose is sourced from sugar cane, sugar beets and corn. High-fructose corn syrup is made from cornstarch and contains more fructose than glucose, compared to regular corn syrup!
Fructose is absorbed through the small intestine just like glucose, but it raises blood sugar levels more gradually than glucose and does not appear to immediately impact insulin levels aka more stable blood sugar and energy levels!
Taste: Of the three sugars, fructose has the sweetest taste but least impact on your blood sugar!
SHOULD YOU LIMIT SUGAR?
Everything in moderation is okay, but sugar is addicting and it's when we start to become addicted to it and over consume it when it becomes a problem.
If we're picking favourites the best sugar for you out of all 3 is definitely fructose by a long shot.
When you are consuming fructose in the form of fruit you are also getting nutrients, fiber and water, which counter any of the sugars negative effects. Fruit is full of so many beneficial nutrients and antioxidants and is definitely a part of a healthy diet!
If you’re looking for a valentine’s day treat that is naturally sweet and you can feel good about giving to your loved one (or yourself) we use organic REAL fruit in our freezies with just a little sprinkle of organic cane sugar.
Enjoy - @tubify