Natural Sweeteners

Natural Sweeteners can be a part of every healthy diet.  Lose the sugar-insulin spike and gain a world of great tasting alternatives. Natural sweeteners are a healthy and tasty alternative to refined sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and artificial sweeteners.

Top Natural Sweeteners

Best Seller No. 1
Erythritol Sweetener Natural Sugar Substitute - Granulated Low Calorie Sweetener High Digestive Tolerance Suitable for Diabetes Keto and Paleo - Perfect Baking Substitute Non GMO 3lb
745 Reviews
Erythritol Sweetener Natural Sugar Substitute - Granulated Low Calorie Sweetener High Digestive Tolerance Suitable for Diabetes Keto and Paleo - Perfect Baking Substitute Non GMO 3lb
  • ZERO CALORIES - HaleFresh Erythritol taste and bakes like sugar while promoting healthy weight management that is why it is a perfect substitutes while baking sugarfree. Easily substitute Erythritol 1:1 in recipes in place of sugar.
  • PERFECT FOR KETO - HaleFresh's pure Erythritol Has Highest Digestive Tolerance Compared To Other Artificial Polyol Sweeteners.
  • GREAT FOR DIABETICS - HaleFresh Erythritol does not raise blood glucose or insulin levels which makes it the ideal source for your sweetened needs
  • NO AFTERTASTE - Our Erythritol Sweetener is the perfect sugarless substitute to add to your food or drink. There is no bitter aftertaste associated with other sweeteners like stevia and monk fruit
  • NON-GMO and Verified GLUTEN FREE - Each blend of HaleFresh's Erythritol granular sweetner is batch tested to ensure only the highest quality of Erythritol is used. Each batch is kosher certified as well
Best Seller No. 2
Whole Earth Sweetener Company Nature Sweet Blend of Stevia & Monk Fruit
129 Reviews
Whole Earth Sweetener Company Nature Sweet Blend of Stevia & Monk Fruit
  • Ideal for sweetening tea, coffee and other beverages
  • Gluten-Free, kosher and non-GMO
  • Zero calorie sweetener
  • Contains no preservatives
  • Perfect for home, work or on-the-go
Best Seller No. 3
Erythritol Granules (2.5lbs) by Anthony's, Made in the USA, Non-GMO, Natural Sweetener
505 Reviews
Erythritol Granules (2.5lbs) by Anthony's, Made in the USA, Non-GMO, Natural Sweetener
  • Premium Non-GMO Natural Erythritol Granular Sweetener
  • 70% as Sweet as Table Sugar with Virtually Zero Calories
  • Batch Tested and Verified Gluten-Free and Sulphur Dioxide Free
  • Low Glycemic Impact, Pure and Non-Blended in a 2.5lb Resealable Bag
  • Anthony's Erythritol isn't just Non-GMO, it comes from Non Genetically Modified source as Anthony's uses cane sugar fermentation vs. corn slurry fermentation. Enjoy!
Best Seller No. 4
Truvia Natural Stevia Sweetener Packets, 240-Count Box (Net Wt. 16.92 oz)
  • Zero-calorie sugar substitute made with stevia leaf extract, erythritol, and natural flavors
  • Box contains 240 packets of Truvia natural stevia sweetener
  • One packet provides the same sweetness as 2 teaspoons of sugar
  • Non-GMO, Gluten-free, sugar-free, kosher, and suitable for people with diabetes
  • Use in anything from your coffee, tea, fruit, cereal and yogurt to your favorite recipes
SaleBest Seller No. 5
Granular Monk Fruit + Erythritol Sweetener (1 lb / 16 oz) - Perfect for Diabetics and Low Carb Dieters - 1:1 Sugar Replacement - No Calorie Sweetener, Non-GMO, Natural Sugar Substitute
420 Reviews
Granular Monk Fruit + Erythritol Sweetener (1 lb / 16 oz) - Perfect for Diabetics and Low Carb Dieters - 1:1 Sugar Replacement - No Calorie Sweetener, Non-GMO, Natural Sugar Substitute
  • ZERO CALORIE & ZERO CARB - Healthy natural sweetener that tastes and bakes like sugar
  • NO BITTER AFTER TASTE - This erythritol and monkfruit combo is not only as sweet as sugar, it also has almost no aftertaste. In a blind taste test you might mistake it for sugar.
  • 100% MONEY BACK GUARANTEE! We stand behind our monk fruit + erythritol blend 100%. If you decide our product isn't for you, just email us and we'll refund you 100% of your money, no questions asked.
  • GLUTEN-FREE, VEGAN, NON-GMO & TOOTH-FRIENDLY!
  • ZERO GLYCEMIC IMPACT - Suitable for Diabetics & Low Carb Dieters
Best Seller No. 6
Erythritol Granules (5lbs) by Anthony's, Made in the USA, Non-GMO, Natural Sweetener
512 Reviews
Erythritol Granules (5lbs) by Anthony's, Made in the USA, Non-GMO, Natural Sweetener
  • Premium Natural Erythritol Granular Natural Sweetener
  • 70% as Sweet as Table Sugar with Zero Calories
  • Batch tested and verified gluten-free and Sulphur Dioxide Free
  • Not Genetically Modified & Contains no genetically modified proteins.
  • Anthony's Erythritol isn't just Non-GMO, it comes from Non Genetically Modified source as Anthony's uses cane sugar fermentation vs. corn slurry fermentation. Enjoy!
SaleBest Seller No. 7
Swerve Sweetener, Bakers Bundle, 12Oz Granular and Confectioners pack of 2
1,017 Reviews
Swerve Sweetener, Bakers Bundle, 12Oz Granular and Confectioners pack of 2
  • BAKE & FROST YOUR CAKE: Have your sugar replacement pantry staples with a bag of Granular for replacing white table sugar and a bag of Confectioners for replacing powdered sugar.
  • TASTES AMAZING: Swerve is sweet and delicious. It is a natural sugar replacement that doesn't have the bitter aftertaste associated with other sweeteners like stevia and monkfruit.
  • MEASURES LIKE SUGAR: If your recipe calls for a cup of sugar, simply replace with a cup of Swerve. Since it measures just like sugar, using Swerve in your favorite recipes will be a breeze.
  • ZERO NET CARBS: The ingredients in Swerve don't affect blood sugar, so the carbohydrates it contains are considered non-impact.
  • NON-GMO VERIFIED: Only the highest quality ingredients are used. The Ingredients in Swerve come from Europe and North America - there are no ingredients from China.
Best Seller No. 8
NOW Foods Erythritol,2.5-Pound
2,401 Reviews
NOW Foods Erythritol,2.5-Pound
  • Pleasant-Tasting Natural Sweetener
  • Great for Reduced-Calorie and Sugar-Free Recipes
  • Quantity - 2.5 lbs, Servings Per Container about 284
  • Low Glycemic Impact
SaleBest Seller No. 9
Powdered Erythritol Sweetener (1 lb / 16 oz) - FREE 10 Keto Desserts PDF - Confectioners - No Calorie Sweetener, Non-GMO, Natural Sugar Substitute
733 Reviews
Powdered Erythritol Sweetener (1 lb / 16 oz) - FREE 10 Keto Desserts PDF - Confectioners - No Calorie Sweetener, Non-GMO, Natural Sugar Substitute
  • ZERO CALORIE & ZERO CARB - Natural sweetener that tastes and bakes like powder sugar
  • FREE LOW CARB DESSERT RECIPE E-BOOK (via email) - When your confectioners erythritol ships, you'll receive an email with a 10 Keto Desserts e-book, each recipe contains up to 5 grams of net carbs!
  • 100% MONEY BACK GUARANTEE! We stand behind our powdered erythritol 100%. If for any reason you decide our erythritol isn't for you, email us & we'll refund you 100% of your money, no questions asked.
  • GLUTEN-FREE, VEGAN, NON-GMO & TOOTH-FRIENDLY!
  • ZERO GLYCEMIC IMPACT - Suitable for Diabetics & Low Carb Dieters
Best Seller No. 10
Powdered Monk Fruit Sweetener with Erythritol Confectioners (1 lb / 16 oz) - Perfect for Diabetics & Low Carb Dieters - 1:1 Sugar Replacement - No Calorie Sweetener, Non-GMO, Natural Sugar Substitute
  • ZERO CALORIE & ZERO CARB - Healthy natural sweetener that tastes and bakes like sugar
  • NO BITTER AFTERTASTE - This erythritol and monkfruit combo is not only as sweet as sugar, it also has almost no aftertaste. In a blind taste test you might mistake it for sugar.
  • 100% MONEY BACK GUARANTEE! We stand behind our monk fruit + erythritol blend 100%. If you decide our product isn't for you, just email us and we'll refund you 100% of your money, no questions asked.
  • GLUTEN-FREE, VEGAN, NON-GMO & TOOTH-FRIENDLY!
  • ZERO GLYCEMIC IMPACT - Suitable for Diabetics & Low Carb Dieters
SaleBest Seller No. 11
Zint Xylitol: Non-GMO, All-Natural Sweetener and Sugar Substitute (1 lb)
702 Reviews
Zint Xylitol: Non-GMO, All-Natural Sweetener and Sugar Substitute (1 lb)
  • Zint Xylitol is an all-natural sweetener that offers the same delicious sweetness as sugar without the weight gain, blood sugar spikes or tooth decay
  • Pure premium xylitol powder sourced from all-natural, organic, non-GMO corn with no preservatives
  • Looks, measures and tastes just like sugar with 40% fewer calories and 75% fewer carbs
  • Metabolizes in the body without insulin, making it ideal for diabetics and others on sugar-controlled diets
  • Low Glycemic Index of 7 (as opposed to 58 for table sugar)
Best Seller No. 12
Health Garden Erythritol All Natural Sweetener, 5 lb. Bag Kosher
83 Reviews
Health Garden Erythritol All Natural Sweetener, 5 lb. Bag Kosher
  • All natural: quality is important to us and that's why our sweeteners are 100% all natural, making them fresher, richer in nutrients
  • Perfect for baking: this sweetener has no aftertaste & won't change the texture of your food like other sweeteners
  • Low glycemic response: get your sugar fix without the annoying downsides
  • Sugar substitute: our all natural erythritol sweetener is a healthy substitute for table sugar & supports a fit lifestyle
  • No harmful additives: health garden manufactures 100% natural, low glycemic sweeteners that are free of artificial chemicals
SaleBest Seller No. 13
Granular Erythritol Sweetener (1 lb / 16 oz) - FREE 10 Keto Desserts PDF - No Calorie Sweetener, Non-GMO, Natural Sugar Substitute
1,142 Reviews
Granular Erythritol Sweetener (1 lb / 16 oz) - FREE 10 Keto Desserts PDF - No Calorie Sweetener, Non-GMO, Natural Sugar Substitute
  • ZERO CALORIE & ZERO CARB - Natural sweetener that tastes and bakes like sugar
  • FREE LOW CARB DESSERT RECIPE E-BOOK (via email) - When your granular erythritol sweetener ships, you'll receive an email with a 10 Keto Desserts e-book, each recipe contains up to 5 grams of net carbs!
  • 100% MONEY BACK GUARANTEE! We stand behind our granulated erythritol 100%. If for any reason you decide our erythritol isn't for you, email us & we'll refund you 100% of your money, no questions asked.
  • GLUTEN-FREE, VEGAN, NON-GMO & TOOTH-FRIENDLY!
  • ZERO GLYCEMIC IMPACT - Suitable for Diabetics & Low Carb Dieters
SaleBest Seller No. 14
Lakanto Monkfruit 1:1 Sugar Substitute | 8.29 oz NON GMO (Classic White)
3,255 Reviews
Lakanto Monkfruit 1:1 Sugar Substitute | 8.29 oz NON GMO (Classic White)
  • TASTES just like sugar | Zero net carbs, Zero calorie, Zero glycemic Sweetener
  • 1:1 SUGAR REPLACEMENT | Lakanto has a perfect mix of monk fruit and erythritol to match the sweetness of sugar and maintain your baking and cooking needs
  • LIFESTYLE FRIENDLY | Keto, Diabetic, Candida, Paleo, Vegan, Low Carb, Low Sugar, NON-GMO, and All Natural
  • CLASSIC & GOLDEN | Golden Lakanto is a brown sugar substitute and our Classic White is a white sugar substitute | Color and Flavor comes from different parts of the Monk Fruit
  • INGREDIENTS | NON-GMO Erythritol and Monk Fruit Extract | NO Natural Flavoring, NO Fiber, NO Maltodextrin, NO Artificial flavoring or sweeteners
Best Seller No. 15
NatriSweet Monk Fruit Extract 3.5oz (100g) 322 Servings | Zero Calorie, Zero Carb, Natural Sweetener | Sugar Alternative with No Artificial Sweeteners | Perfect for Keto, Paleo & Low-Carb Dieters
  • ZERO-CALORIE, ZERO-CARB SUGAR SUBSTITUTE: With its zero calorie and carb content and incredibly delicious taste, monk fruit extract has risen to popularity as a healthier and sweeter sugar alternative - the extract is 200 times sweeter than sugar. Derived from a small melon native to China and Thailand, monk fruit extract has long been used in Eastern medicine and cuisine. We've perfectly captured the taste and health benefits of the fruit to provide this superior-quality monk fruit powder.
  • REPLACE SUGAR WITH OUR ALL-NATURAL SWEETENER: While sugar is widely used as a sweetener, multiple studies have shown that it comes with unhealthy effects on the body. Sugar has been linked to cardiovascular diseases and elevated blood sugar levels. Because monk fruit contains zero calories, it has little to no effect on blood sugar, making it a healthier and calorie-free alternative.
  • 100% MONK FRUIT SWEETENER: Our powdered monk fruit sweetener contains no artificial sweeteners, just pure natural monk fruit goodness. No maltodextrin, erythritol, added flavors, binders, fillers, or artificial ingredients of any kind.
  • THE MANY HEALTH BENEFITS OF MONK FRUIT: This sweetener has been found to provide many other health benefits, such as fighting inflammation, delivering antioxidants into the body, and increasing energy levels. Monk fruit has also been found to offer beneficial antimicrobial properties.
  • YOUR HAPPINESS GUARANTEED: We have a pledge to offer only the highest quality sweeteners, and we're confident that you'll love this powdered sugar substitute as much as we do. That's why we back our product with a 100% guarantee. If you're ever unsatisfied, contact us right away and we will provide a full refund.
Best Seller No. 16
CCnatrure Organic Stevia Powder Extract Natural Sweetener Zero Calorie Sugar Substitute 4oz
8 Reviews
CCnatrure Organic Stevia Powder Extract Natural Sweetener Zero Calorie Sugar Substitute 4oz
  • Organic Stevia Powder 4oz, USDA organic Certification, Kosher Certification, Halal Certification.
  • No Fillers, No Chemicals, No Added Ingredients - Just pure all natural stevia extract powder.
  • Stevia powder is a sweetener and sugar substitute made from leaves of the plant species stevia rebaudiana. Stevia's taste has a slower onset and longer duration than that of sugar.
  • Our stevia is an all natural sugar substitute. Sweeteners like aspartame, acesulfame, and sucralose are all made of artificial chemicals and are suspected of promoting serious health disorders.
  • 100% Customer Satisfaction Money Back Guarantee - If you don't love it, we'll give you a full refund, no questions asked
Best Seller No. 17
Kakato High Fiber Sweetener - Non-GMO, Natural, Low Calorie Sugar Substitute - Artificial Free, Gluten Free, Prebiotic, Sugar Alcohol Free - All Purpose Healthy Sweetener (1 Cannister - 30 Oz)
75 Reviews
Kakato High Fiber Sweetener - Non-GMO, Natural, Low Calorie Sugar Substitute - Artificial Free, Gluten Free, Prebiotic, Sugar Alcohol Free - All Purpose Healthy Sweetener (1 Cannister - 30 Oz)
  • Each Cannister: 30 Oz - Use Like Sugar - 0 grams of Sugar and Low Calorie - 2g of Fiber per Serving (1 tsp)
  • Artificial and Sugar Alcohol Free - Non-GMO and Gluten Free - Low Glycemic Index - Helps with Mineral Absorption
  • Fructose, Sucralose, and Aspartame Free - Natural Prebiotic - Helps Bolster Intestinal Micro-Flora
  • No Preservatives - Teeth Friendly - Inulin and Psyllium Free - Heat Stable - Digestive Friendly
  • Made with Tagatose (lactose free, dairy derived sweetener), IMO (short chain fiber), Stevia Extract, Monk Fruit Extract and Natural Flavor
Best Seller No. 18
WHOLE EARTH SWEETENER 100% Erythritol Sweetener, 4 Pound Pouch, Natural Sugar Alternative, Baking Sugar Substitute, Zero Calorie Sweetener, Gluten Free, Non-GMO, Keto Sweetener
  • ERYTHRITOL SWEETENER: Enjoy a delicious sugar alternative that tastes, bakes and measures just like sugar
  • ZERO CALORIE SWEETENER: Each serving of erythritol has zero calories and zero grams of sugar
  • NATURAL SUGAR ALTERNATIVE: A natural alternative to sugar and artificial sweeteners, our granulated erythritol sweetener is sourced from a fermentation process using non-GMO corn and is Non-GMO Project Verified
  • BULK ERYTHRITOL SWEETENER: Packaged in a 4-pound resealable pouch, so you can easily sweeten your favorite foods and beverages
  • LOW GLYCEMIC INDEX SWEETENER: Erythritol is a low glycemic index sweetener and is a great choice for those following paleo, keto and candida lifestyles
  • GREAT WITH COFFEE: Sweeten coffee or tea without the calories of sugar cubes, sugar packets, raw sugar packets or artificial sweeteners
  • WHOLE EARTH SWEETENER 100% ERYTHRITOL: Our granulated erythritol sweetener is an excellent sugar substitute for sweetening coffee, cooking and baking. Compare to other sugar free sweeteners, artificial sweetener, zero calorie sweeteners, monk fruit sweeteners, and stevia sweeteners
  • SUITABLE FOR PEOPLE WITH DIABETES: Replacing added sugar with zero calorie sweeteners can help individuals with diabetes manage their health while enjoying sweetened food and beverages
  • KOSHER AND GLUTEN FREE: Our erythritol sweetener is gluten free and kosher parve certified by the Orthodox Union
  • Ingredients: Erythritol
Best Seller No. 19
SweetLeaf Natural Stevia Sweetener, 70 Count
999 Reviews
SweetLeaf Natural Stevia Sweetener, 70 Count
  • Natural sweetener made from the stevia leaf
  • Ideal for people with diabetes or for those looking to manage their weight
  • No calories or carbs, no artificial ingredients
  • Non-glycemic response, no bitterness or aftertaste
  • Non GMO Project Verified
  • Zero Calories, zero carbohydrates
  • Zero glycemic, safe for diabetics
  • Smooth, fresh, sweet taste, kosher
  • Extracted using only pure water
Best Seller No. 20
SPLENDA Naturals Stevia Sweetener Packets, 500 Count
153 Reviews
SPLENDA Naturals Stevia Sweetener Packets, 500 Count
  • 100% NATURAL, NOTHING ARTIFICIAL: Splenda Naturals is an all natural sweetener, made from the sweeter part of the stevia leaf. Splenda Naturals is perfect for sweetening coffee, tea, cereal, smoothies; whatever could use a bit of sweet!
  • BEST TASTING STEVIA: Until now, you may have tried other stevia sweeteners that have a bitter aftertaste. Splenda Naturals Stevia Sweetner uses the sweeter part of the stevia leaf, Reb D. We believe the D stands for "delicious"!
  • ALL-PURPOSE SWEETENER: Use Splenda Naturals anywhere you would use sugar or an artificial sweetener; in hot or iced drinks like coffee, tea, lemonade, or smoothies. Great for use in baking or sauces; no bitterness; stevia extract means you won't miss sugar
  • ZERO CALORIE: Natural calorie free sugar substitute choice for diabetes, weight management, and healthy lifestyles. Sweetness for the whole family that fits right into your health and fitness needs. No calories, no artificial ingredients, no preservatives
  • SWEETNESS BEYOND COMPARE: Splenda Naturals compares favorably to Pyure, SweetLeaf, NOW Foods, Natural Mate, Whole Earth, Better Stevia Pure Via, Truvia, Stevia in the Raw, Wholesome Sweeteners, Steviva, Kiva, Born Sweet, N'joy, NuNaturals, Xylosweet

Guide to Using Natural Sweeteners

The average American takes in 400 calories a day from added sugars. And while the consumption of refined sugar is on the rise, so are artificial sweeteners. Artificial sweeteners like aspartame, sucralose, ACE K and saccharin have been debated for years in regard to their damaging side effects.

While all of these sweeteners are technically “safe,” according to the FDA, they are coming under increased scrutiny because of their side effects. Side effects from artificial sweeteners range from headaches and migraines to shrunken thymus glands, impairment of liver and kidney function, and mood disorders.

Refined sugars aren’t healthy either. Side effects of refined sugars include diabetes, tooth decay, obesity, heart disease, certain types of cancer and even poor cognitive functioning.

Over the last few years, corn growers and affiliated associations have pushed high fructose corn syrup as a natural sweetener. This is simply not true. The vast majority of HFCS is produced from genetically modified corn.

Fructose is a simple sugar that is rapidly metabolized by the liver causing a “sugar high.” This quick-acting sugar is believed to lead to increased storage of fat in the liver, resulting in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, digestive upset, and atherosclerosis.

To add confusion to the sugar dilemma, many foods labeled sugar-free still might not be good for us either. They often contain artificial sweeteners- which our body doesn’t recognize and thus we want to avoid. Or they include large amounts of other sweeteners, such as agave, maple syrup, coconut sugar, rapadura sugar or dates. Even though they’re more natural whole food forms of sugar, they’re in such great quantities that if consumed in large amounts, would cause anyone to gain excess body fat and have blood sugar spikes!

Fortunately, we have plenty of other real food options to fulfill our sweet tooth that doesn’t harm our health, and in fact, can even support our health in some ways. But with dozens of natural sweeteners out there, many of us are wondering what they are and how to use them.

Whether you’re using natural sweeteners for baking, your morning coffee, tea or smoothies, or you’re following a certain diet like low carb, Paleo or keto, or you have health conditions like diabetes, insulin resistance or hypoglycemia, you can find alternatives to support your clean eating lifestyle.

What to Avoid: Artificial Sweeteners and Refined Sugar

Artificial sweeteners like Splenda, Sweet’N Low and Equal became really popular over the last decade since they have zero calories and therefore seemed healthy at first. Well, that is it seemed safe. Low-calorie and sugar-free items are made up of harmful chemical ingredients like saccharin, acesulfame, aspartame, neotame, and sucralose. In fact, here are some facts you might not know:

  • Fake sweeteners can cause symptoms from headaches and migraines to weight gain and IBS, and even more serious conditions like cardiovascular disease. 
  • Research found daily consumption of diet drinks containing artificial sweeteners was associated with a 36% greater risk for metabolic syndrome and a 67% increased risk for type 2 diabetes. 
  • Research also showed artificial sweeteners can overstimulate sugar receptors, cause addiction to overly sweet foods and retrain the taste buds to need sweeter foods.
  • Overstimulation can lead to weight gain, obesity and numerous health problems like type 2 diabetes, kidney damage and more by altering the diet. 

Over-consumption of any common refined sugars like white sugar, raw sugar, brown sugar or powdered sugar, high fructose corn syrup, malt syrup, dextrose or sucrose can cause conditions like Leaky Gut, fatty liver disease, cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, certain cancers like small intestine, colon, breast, and even more illnesses by rapidly increasing blood glucose and insulin levels, increasing triglycerides and causing inflammation. 

 Natural sweeteners may be a great alternative to satisfy the sweet tooth without causing a major insulin spike.

Natural Sweeteners Explained

Stevia

Stevia is a plant that’s grown in South America. It’s processed and extracted into either a powder or clear liquid, with the resulting product being about 200 times sweeter than sugar.

Positives include zero fructose, zero calories and zero on the GI. This means that it’s a natural way to add sweetness without affecting your blood sugar, and in fact can even reduce fasting blood sugar levels, balance insulin resistance and aid in glucose regulation.

There are also medicinal properties in the plant shown to have truly incredible health benefits (as seen in about 600 different studies) including its use as a natural cancer relief, improving cholesterol, lowering blood pressure, supporting weight loss and warding off health problems linked with obesity, like diabetes and metabolic syndrome. 

While purified stevia extracts are more processed than green leaf stevia, their health benefits seem to be on par with the natural leaf.

Negatives include a bitter aftertaste that can be off-putting. While most people do well with stevia, it is an herb and everyone’s body may react differently to it. Some people report bloating, nausea, dizziness, numbness and muscle pain with consumption, but this hasn’t been observed in scientific studies. 

It all comes back to the source and quality of stevia you get–the taste, benefits and possible side effects largely will depend on what stevia you use. If you use a good quality stevia, you’ll likely enjoy the taste and experience zero side effects.

Not all stevia products are created equal. It’s important to look for 100% pure liquid stevia, ideally organic and alcohol-free, to know you’re getting the most pure form. Or you can go totally pure and get the crushed, dried stevia leaves, which are unprocessed and you can grind yourself (although it’s recommended you don’t use homegrown stevia for baking or cooking because of the chemical reactions that may occur).

Powdered versions, while not necessarily bad, aren’t as pure and are often mixed with other zero sugar sweeteners, which don’t always digest as well. Also avoid altered stevia blends, which can have toxic chemical solvents and end up with less than 1% of actual stevia. The best stevia in any form will have no additives, including other sweeteners, and be certified organic.

Chicory Root Fiber and Inulin 

Chicory root comes from a plant in the dandelion family. Inulin is a type of plant-based starch (classified as a soluble fiber and prebiotic) that gets extracted from the roots of chicory plants, producing chicory root extract.

Positives include Inulin’s high fermentablity by the friendly bacteria in our guts, meaning it can support gut health. It is a source of fiber, though not a large amount. Chicory root has been shown to reduce stress, contain anti-inflammatory properties, protect the liver, possibly prevent or delay the onset of diabetes, help manage osteoarthritis, aid gut health and relieve constipation. 

It’s also great for anyone watching their sugar or carb intake, as it’s a 1 on the GI and has no carbs, so just like other sweeteners in this category, it won’t contribute to insulin spikes.

On the downside, large doses of prebiotic fibers like inulin can cause gastrointestinal distress such as gas, bloating and pain in some people. People with conditions like IBS can have symptoms with even small doses. It can also have a laxative effect, so it’s best diluted by mixing it with other sweeteners like stevia (and often comes this way in stevia baking blends). Also, be careful if you’re sensitive to FODMAPs. Chicory root has a long history of being used as a coffee substitute, and many herbal blends still use chicory root as a base.

Inulin is often used in high-fiber and gluten-free products like granola or protein bars, baked goods and cereals, as well as low-fat or dairy-free yogurt, ice cream and ready-to-drink protein shakes to add natural bulk and sweetness.

Inulin is not really used as a sweetener on its own, but you may see it mixed in with other sweetener blends and in some of the foods mentioned. For chicory root, look for organic and buy it already roasted and ground to use as a coffee substitute, or you can find it raw for use when cooking.

Monk Fruit or Luo Han Guo

Monk fruit is a melon-like fruit found indigenously in southeast Asia. Monk fruit sweeteners are made from the fruit’s extract and are 150 to 400 times sweeter than sugar.

Monk fruit contains powerful antioxidants called mogrosides, which are metabolized differently by the body than natural sugars. That’s why, despite their very sweet taste, these fruits contain no calories and have no effect on blood sugar with its GI rating of zero.

In fact, monk fruit has a myriad of health benefits, including its ability to fight free radicals, lower risk of obesity and diabetes, act as an anti-inflammatory and coolant, help prevent cancer, combat infections, fight fatigue, naturally relief for diabetes, and work as a natural antihistamine. 

There are no reported monk fruit side effects or negative reactions, though no long-term studies have been done to test monk fruit side effects over time. When shopping, its harder to find than other natural sweeteners, and it’s expensive to import.

Look for a whole-fruit extract, as it is likely to maintain more benefits.  Be sure to check your labels, as monk fruit is often mixed with other artificial sweeteners, dextrose or other ingredients to balance out sweetness.

Sugar Alcohols

The next three sweeteners–erythritol, xylitol and maltitol–are all sugar alcohols (also known as polyols), but they have slight variations so they are listed separately.

Sugar alcohols occur naturally in plants, like fruits and vegetables. They’re often used as sugar substitutes because they provide a sweet taste that does not raise blood sugar to the degree that sucrose does since they convert to glucose more slowly in your body and do not require much insulin to metabolize.

As an added benefit, sugar alcohols do not cause tooth decay, unlike their sugary counterparts. However, you should avoid sugar alcohols if you have problems with bacterial or yeast overgrowth.

Just like with some of the other natural sweeteners covered above, it takes processing to get these natural substances into the consumable forms we see on shelves today. Despite coming from plants and being zero or low glycemic, some people wouldn’t consider these options ‘real food’ given they aren’t in their most natural form.

Erythritol 

Erythritol is made by fermenting the natural sugar found in corn (and occurs naturally in pears, soy sauce, wine, sake, watermelon and grapes). It’s about 60-80% as sweet as sugar, but with no fructose.

Erythritol does not raise blood sugar and thus considered suitable for people with diabetes, insulin resistance or hypoglycemics. It’s also the easiest sugar alcohol to digest since more than 90% of erythritol is broken down in the small intestine and never reaches the colon (in contrast to other sugar alcohols, which can cause digestive upset). If you have digestive imbalances, this may be a great option for you.

Erythritol is also an antioxidant that helps fight free radicals, slowing down the aging process. 

However, many people report experiencing gas, bloating and diarrhea when eating sugar alcohols (typically only when eaten in excess). Also, if you have kidney problems or are sensitive to corn, you may want to avoid erythritol.

Be sure to check the labels if you’re looking for the inclusion/exclusion of specific sweeteners. Oftentimes sugar alcohols and stevia are used in conjunction with other higher GI sweeteners or even regular sugar, so if you’re diabetic or watching your sugar intake, always read the ingredients and check the sugar content on the label.

 Xylitol

Xylitol is a naturally occurring alcohol found in most plant material, including many fruits and vegetables. It’s actually extracted from birch wood to make medicine. Like erythritol, xylitol has zero fructose, doesn’t raise blood sugar and is safe for diabetics, hypoglycemics or for those avoiding sugar.

However, you may experience gut discomfort when you first try xylitol.  Most likely it from eating too much at first, our bodies have an enzyme that breaks down xylitol, but if it isn’t in use, it takes time to build it up. Until you have enough of the enzyme, you’ll experience discomfort. It’s also easy to get a low-quality xylitol, which can likewise cause digestive upset.

Look for birch-sourced or North American xylitol, making sure it’s free from corn. 

Maltitol

Maltitol is made by the hydrogenation of maltose, which is obtained from starch. It can reduce the rise in blood glucose and insulin response associated with the ingestion of glucose, but is still more likely to boost your blood sugar compared to to the low GI options like stevia and erythritol.

It’s commonly linked to digestive issues such as bloating, diarrhea and abdominal pain.

Maltitol probably isn’t the best choice natural sweetener, you maybe better off with the zero glycemic sweeteners that have less side effects, like stevia and erythritol.

Of course it’s always best to stick with real food and lower GI natural sweeteners that also have health benefits. Eating fruit is a great clean eating option to get your sweet fix, too.

Consuming other natural sweeteners in moderation is usually fine for most people, and honestly, sometimes we just need to splurge on a little sugar! So going for the real deal makes the most sense.

Healthy4LifeOnline delivers the best Natural Sweeteners on the market today. We keep our lists fresh and current so you get the best options and top rated….

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Content Contributor: Mark

Mark has been a fitness enthusiast for most of his adult life. After a lifelong struggle of food addiction, Mark's mission is to share his success stories with the world. 

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