Many of us are addicted to sugar, or sweetness, in our foods and beverages, and as confectionery. The most important step we can take in relation to sugar consumption is to decrease our sweet craving. The next most important steps are to use only organic sweeteners, and to use alternatives to cane sugar, at least some of the time.

We need to reduce our sugar intake. Cutting back on processed foods will automatically cut back our daily sugar intake. The more raw foods we include in our diet the less processed sugar we will consume. Removing processed sugar from our diet altogether is difficult, if not impossible for most of us to do. Moderation is the key, even with organic sweeteners.

Most sugar in supermarket food is refined cane sugar that is of little, or no, benefit to our bodies and on the contrary, causes health problems.

There are many kinds of sugar:

Icing sugar or icing mixture or confectioners sugar is sugar with 3 percent corn starch (or wheaten corn starch) finely ground together. Icing sugar is used for making icing, frosting, in desserts and sprinkled on desserts and other food.

Turbinado sugar is often called raw sugar. Although turbinado sugar is processed less than white sugar it is still processed and therefore of little value to us. Because it is processed less than white sugar it is darker in colour due to the molasses that is still in the sugar.

Demerara sugar has less molasses than Turbinado sugar and larger crystals. Because of its large crystals it is used in desserts.

Brown sugar is dark brown and has a rich flavour because of its high molasses content. Brown sugar is used mostly for baking as it adds a moist texture, rich flavour and a chewy feel.

Organic sugar is darker in colour than white sugar and retains some nutrients from the sugar plant.

There is a range of organic sweeteners on the market that can provide us with the sweet taste along with vitamins, minerals and trace elements, whilst at the same time, supporting sustainable agriculture practices. These products are produced without artificial chemicals, are produced from ingredients that have not been genetically engineered or altered through synthetic molecular manipulation, and have adhered to Fair Trade practices.

Organic sweetener products include:

Organic honey

Organic sugar

Organic molasses

Organic muscovado, sucanat, rapadura

Organic xylitol, sorbitol, malititol, mannitol, erythritol

Organic stevia, cahehe

Organic syrups