Coconut sugar has become popular in recent years. People who are interested in decreasing or eliminating sugar from their diets sometimes consider using coconut sugar as an alternative.
Here, we explore whether or not coconut sugar may be healthier than table sugar.
What Is Coconut Sugar?
Coconut sugar is made from the sap of the coconut plant. Sometimes it is confused with palm sugar, which is made from a different plant.
Coconut sugar looks much like table sugar except that it has bigger, brown-colored kernels.
Is Coconut Sugar Healthier Than Table Sugar?
Table sugar doesn't contain any real nutrient value. It's high in fructose, which causes insulin spikes followed by glucose spikes that can lead to insulin resistance and diabetes when eaten in high amounts.
Coconut sugar does have some nutrients, but probably not enough to have health benefits.
It does contain some fiber, also, which slows its digestion and makes insulin spikes less of a concern, so it may be a better option for diabetics, but they should check with their doctors.
Coconut sugar is quite high in calories, and while there are some nutrients in it, there probably aren't enough to classify it as anything other than "empty calories."
Also, coconut sugar is quite high in fructose, just like table syrup, and fructose is associated with all kinds of health problems.
Should You Avoid Coconut Sugar?
If you are trying to eliminate sugar from your diet, coconut sugar is not a good alternative. It is still associated with negative health outcomes, and it has calories.
However, if your goal is to eat sugar only sparingly, coconut sugar is probably a bit healthier than regular table sugar.