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Other Names of Sugar

Updated: Dec 27, 2022

Did you know Sugar has approximately 56 different names?

The purpose of this article is to tell you more about the hidden names of sugar. I want to emphasize that cutting out only  refined white sugar from your diet is not enough.

The following are only a few of the sweetener names you may have come across on food packages. Agave syrup, barley malt, cane juice corn syrup, brown rice syrup, Dextrose, Dextran, Carob syrup, Corn sweetener, Evaporated cane juice, high fructose corn syrup, fruit juice, sucanat…

colorful cupcakes made with hydrogenated margarine

Where’s all that sugar hiding?

Particularly in many healthy-sounding foods like cereals, granola bars, and yogurt, several types of these added sugars are hiding, disguising the sly sweetener.

By familiarizing ourselves with these code names we can take a leap towards our health.

It is worth mentioning here that trying to cut refined white sugar from their diet I have seen many people go for FDA approved artificial sweeteners such as aspartame, saccharin, acesulfame K, and neotames . Studies have found these sugar substitutes to be toxic to digestive gut microbes by keeping the healthy bacteria at bay.

Sugars and your gut

An unhappy gut microbiota will result in side effects from depression and anxiety to altered immunity, indigestion, bloating, constipation, hormonal imbalances, chronic inflammation and fatigue. In addition, the aspartame in your favorite diet soda, chewing gum or sugar-free snack food contains zero calories; it literally confuses your taste buds, causing the body to crave the calories it’s missing through sweet satisfaction, which ultimately leads to increased appetite and weight gain.

supermarket shelves

Addiction to Sugar High

Sugar targets the brain’s pleasure center by triggering dopamine (happy hormone) release. When you unknowingly consume the hidden sugars on a daily basis eventually, as you crave that sugar high, it will be tougher to achieve, so you end up increasing your sugar intake overtime.

Researchers have proven that excess sugar causes wrinkles attacking and breaking down protein fibers in collagen and elastin, one of the main causes for skin to look older. It is also stored as fat around organs as a result of insulin resistance and specifically excess fructose can lead to non-alcoholic fatty liver if not consumed moderately.

What alternatives are out there?

Below are my favorite sweeteners which again are to be used moderately.

  1.  Raw honey

  2. Maple syrup,

  3. Coconut nectar

  4. Stevia

colorful sugary fruit loops

Familiarize yourself with the names and read not just the labels but ALL ingredients

Getting to know the other names of sugar is one of the best things you can do. Examine every ingredient’s list for sugar in all forms, even if you don’t expect the product to contain sugar. Look to salad dressings, fruit juices, pasta sauces, condiments, breads, crackers, yogurts, and cereals for the sugar percentage. One last point to have in mind, is that if sugar is one of the first ingredients listed, then the product contains a large amount of the sweet stuff.

Be mindful of your food choices and always plan ahead. Choose whole foods which are defined as foods that rot within a week, that don’t have a package, or foods that our ancestors would recognize as food.  Vegetables, fruits, or anything with less than a few ingredients (and ingredients we can pronounce) are whole foods.  Whole foods are low in sugar or naturally occurring, like fruit.  By adding more whole foods and reducing our process food intake, we will be successful at lowering our sugar intake significantly.

salad dressing made with lemon juice and Dijon mustard

My favorite homemade salad dressing

One easy healthy swap can be staying away from store bought sugar-loaded salad dressings and condiments and preparing them at home.

Here’s a quick nutritious recipe :

  1. 1/4 cup dijon mustard OR 1/4 cup tahini

  2. 2 teaspoons honey

  3. 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar (I prefer raw, unfiltered)

  4. 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

  5. 1 teaspoon sea salt

  6. 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

(Try to include a serving of healthy fat with every meal) A diet that includes enough healthy fats, or adequate protein, will help to feel less hungry throughout the day and less impacted by cravings or fatigue.


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