You have proposed to reduce sugar and sweeten in a healthier way. Since a time ago the erythritol that you can already buy at Mercadona It is positioned as a fashionable sweetener with a growing number of followers, both among consumers and the industry.
What makes him so popular is that he is low in calories and does not influence insulin levels. So it seems appropriate to combat the fiercest problems of sugar abuse: obesity and the risk of conditions from diabetes to cardiovascular problems. It also tastes quite similar to this, so those with a sweet tooth would not notice the difference so much.
What is erythritol
He erythritol (E-968) belongs to the so-called alcohols of sugar or polyols, such as xylitol or sorbitol. It is a hydrate, but not a sugar. It should be noted that it does not contain alcohol (ethanol) either.
They can be found naturally in foods such as certain fruits and vegetables, or, as in the specific case of erythritol, obtained through the fermentation of certain carbohydrates.
The hybrid characteristic of these polyalcholes gives them similarities to both sugar and alcohols. As they explain from Nebula, the structural resemblance to normal sugar allows them to bind to sweet taste receptors on the tongue, resulting in a sensation of sweetness. The differences lie in digestibility.
While sugar is broken down by enzymes into available energy units, as they are resistant to digestion. That is, they pass into the intestine without having been digested. This is the result very low heat absorption.
While sugar provides about 4 calories per 100 grams, erythritol accounts for 0.24 calories with a sweetness between 70 and 80% similar to sucrose (table sugar).
Erythritol offers another advantage. Sugar alcohols such as xylitol, sorbitol, and maltitol reach the colon where they are fermented by intestinal bacteria. What has been linked to GI problems such as gas, bloating, or diarrhea, in addition to altering the intestinal flora. Therefore, they are not very convenient for those who suffer from irritable bowel syndrome or fructose intolerance.
Instead, 90% of erythritol enters the bloodstream through the small intestine and is excreted in the urine. What reduces this negative impact on the colon. However, as the label of the Mercadona erythritol, available for 3.30 euros for a 200-gram container, in excess “can cause laxative effects.”
Is he healthy? erythritol?
In 2003, the Scientific Committee for Human Nutrition (CCAH) of the European Union concluded that erythritol is safe for use in food. The World Health Organization (WHO) confirmed its safety in 1999 and, in 2001, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) did so.
Among its benefits is a Similar in appearance and taste to table sugar but with fewer side effects. Erythritol has no effect on insulin, and according to some studies neither on total cholesterol, triglycerides and free fatty acids. In addition to being low in calories.
So it can be a convenient option for people with obesity, or who wantn maintain your weightalso against metabolic diseases such as diabetes, although before consuming it it is always advisable to consult a doctor.
It is not convenient to abuse
However, this does not mean that you now have a free hand to sweeten your coffee and pastries with kilos and kilos of erythritol. In excess can produce laxative effects.
And while it is a “healthier” alternative to sugar, It is best to always resort to healthy and natural foods. So a piece of fruit will still be better than a cake sweetened with this compound.