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Agave Nectar Is NOT Healthy, Other Options For Healthy Sweeteners, Ep278

August 11th, 2010 Natasha St. Michael

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Agave Nectar Is NOT Healthy, Other Options For Healthy Sweeteners, Ep278

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  1. August 11th, 2010 at 20:37 | #1

    Thanks for this Natasha,
    so, so true!!!!
    Never felt good about this clear, suspicious looking liquid. As I learned from Rhio at the Simply Raw Festival in Ottawa, there is no such thing as raw agave. Raw agave turns into tequila (would rather have that ;) ), so all agave is processed!!
    But for sure, go for sugar with fiber, honey, anything is better.
    Thanks again for standing up and be brave to speak your mind/truth.

  2. Amyah
    August 12th, 2010 at 14:33 | #2

    Hello Natasha,

    1) Sooo agree at what you say. I can’t stand sugar in my food and it drives me nut to see raw food recipes with dates and agave syrup in tomatoe sauces and vinaigrettes and other savory meals. And it is interesting to read your comment, Ildiko, on the raw agave used to make tequila… I knew about that and forgot

    2) What do you think about using tiny amount of real maple syrup if needed occasionnally?

    3) What can we use instead of sundried tomatoes in a recipe? Is dehydrated tomatoes would do? Advice please

    4) What can we use instead of pine nuts (pignons). I almost had a heart attack last week as about not quite 1/2 cup would have cost me more than 30$. Is cashew would do the same? Advice please :)

    Thank you for your work, Natasha…. you are doing a great job!

  3. RawOne
    August 13th, 2010 at 12:38 | #3

    Hi Natasha – Sorry to hear that you had a bad experience with agave. I guess we all react differently depending upon our own bodies. But, to be factual, high quality agave nectar is low glycemic, and for people like me, my body has no negative reaction with agave. Regarding the fructose of agave, it is similar to honey in that respect (honey ranges from 40 – 70% fructose, and agave is 50 – 90% depending upon the brand). So if fructose is your sensitivity, then honey and fruit fall into the same boat). Also, regarding your experience with agave, you should let us know the brand of agave, because there are so many different brands and most use different types of agave plants and processing techniques. To me, agave is a lot like wine – where the grape comes from and how it’s produced have a huge impact on the taste and quality. BTW, the agave nectars on the market that are “raw” are minimally produced at temperatures not exceeding 118 degrees F. Many raw food folks use this as a threshold for not destroying the natural make up of the food. In the case of agave, the plants themselves endure the natural temperatures above this while the plant grows in the volcanic soils in Mexico. So I go for the raw agave, which contains natural inulin and trace minerals. But if you don’t like agave, then I agree that you shouldn’t use it. Just think that you shouldn’t lump all agave nectar together with your single experience with what could have been an inferior quality product. Thanks for listening!

  4. Nancy
    August 15th, 2010 at 10:00 | #4

    Natasha, have you tried the Coconut Secret nectar? I was wondering about your opinion on that and maple syrup.

    Thanks.

  5. Patty
    September 2nd, 2010 at 14:55 | #5

    Actually, agave has been banned as a low-glycemic swettener. You can read about it here:
    http://www.glycemic.com/AgaveReport.htm

    I am also interested in Natasha’s opinion of coconut nectar.

  6. dani
    September 4th, 2010 at 23:46 | #6

    I have no issues with Agave Nectar. I’ve heard a lot of the debate and have dove into fairly deeply. I use the Raw Unprocessed kind from a manufacturer that I won’t ‘plug’ to avoid sounding like a shill.. and yes there is a difference even though many cry otherwise. Everything is ‘technically processed’… if you put an apple in a juicer it is ‘processed’. The key is whether there is harmful adulteration during that ‘process’. And there are different types of Agave and ways in which they are processed depending on the manufacturer. It’s key to know and trust those who make the products you take into your body.

    A few reasons why I use it.. 1- I don’t have to use as much. So comparing if you eat a pound of each… Is a bad way to assess their merits. With Agave I use WAY less to achieve the same sweetness. 2- Fructose is what you find in NATURAL fruits like apples, etc. And finally.. 3- Sugar is processed using Animal products such as BONE CHARCOAL! ICK!

    So to sum it up… Agave allows me to moderate my sugar intake a great deal!

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