Honey vs Sugar
First what is sugar??Sugar or sucrose, is a carbohydrate that occurs naturally in every fruit and vegetable in the plant kingdom. It is the major product of photosynthesis, the process by which plants transform the sugar energy into food. Sugar occurs in greatest quantities in sugar cane and sugar beets from which it is separated for commercial use.
Second what is honey??Honey is a sweet food made by bees using nectar from flowers. The variety produced by honey bees (the genus Apis) is the one most commonly referred to, as it is the type of honey collected by beekeepers and consumed by humans. Honey produced by other bees and insects has distinctly different properties. Honey bees transform nectar into honey by a process of regurgitation and evaporation. They store it as a primary food source in wax honeycombs inside the beehive.
Honey gets its sweetness from the monosaccharides fructose and glucose, and has approximately the same relative sweetness as that of granulated sugar..It has attractive chemical properties for baking and a distinctive flavor that leads some people to prefer it over sugar and other sweeteners.
How many kinds of sugar are there out there???You might be surprised by this answer!!! Would you have guessed over 25? I did not think it was that many.
Bakers Special Sugar - The crystal size of Bakers Special is even finer than that of fruit sugar. As its name suggests, it was developed specially for the baking industry. Bakers Special is used for sugaring doughnuts and crumb texture.Castor/caster sugar Spelled both "caster" and "castor." The spelling castor sugar used to be the prevailing one, but caster sugar seems to be more usual now, perhaps because it is used by some sugar manufacturers on their packaging. See superfine sugar. UK castor/caster sugar is very finely granulated sugar (finer than U.S. granulated sugar) which allows it to dissolve almost instantly. In the United States, superfine sugar or the new Baker's sugar may be substituted. It is called "berry sugar" in British Columbia.Confectioners or powdered sugar - In Canada and Great Britain (England) it is called icing sugar and in France sucre glace. This sugar is granulated sugar ground to a smooth powder and then sifted. It contains about 3% cornstarch to prevent caking. Powdered sugar is ground into three different degrees of fineness. The confectioners sugar available in supermarkets – 10X – is the finest of the three and is used in icings, confections and whipping cream. The other two types of powdered sugar are used by industrial bakers.
Coarse sugar - Also known as pearl or decorating sugar. As its name implies, the crystal size of coarse sugar is larger than that of “regular” sugar. Coarse sugar is recovered when molasses-rich, sugar syrups high in sucrose are allowed to crystallize. The large crystal size of coarse sugar makes it highly resistant to color change or inversion (natural breakdown to fructose and glucose) at cooking and baking temperatures. These characteristics are important in making fondants, confections and liquors.Fruit sugar - Fruit sugar is slightly finer than “regular” sugar and is used in dry mixes such as gelatin and pudding desserts, and powdered drinks. Fruit sugar has a more uniform small crystal size than “regular” sugar. The uniformity of crystal size prevents separation or settling of larger crystals to the bottom of the box, an important quality in dry mixes.Granulated sugar – Also called table sugar or white sugar. This is the sugar most known to consumers, is the sugar found in every home’s sugar bowl, and most commonly used in home food preparation. It is the most common form of sugar and the type most frequently called for in recipes. Its main distinguishing characteristics are a paper-white color and fine crystals.Sugar cubes – They are made from moist granulated sugar that is pressed into molds and then dried.Maple sugar - Granulated maple sugar (also known as stirred sugar or Indian sugar) is prepared by heating maple syrup until the temperature is 45˚ to 50˚F (25˚ to 28˚C) above the boiling point of water. It is then allowed to cool to about 200˚F (93˚C), and stirred either in the cooking vessel or in an appropriately sized container until granulation is achieved.Raw sugar – It is essentially the product at the point before the molasses is removed (what’s left after sugarcane has been processed and refined). Popular types of raw sugar include demerara sugar from Guyana and Barbados sugar, a moist, fine textured sugar. Turbinado sugar is raw sugar that has been steam cleaned to remove contaminates., leaving a light molasses flavored, tan colored sugar.Sanding sugar - Also known as coarse sugar. A large crystal sugar that is used mainly in the baking and confectionery industries as a sprinkle on top of baked goods. The large crystals reflect light and give the product a sparkling appearance.Superfine, ultra fine, or bar sugar - This sugar’s crystal size is the finest of all the types of granulated white sugar. It is ideal for delicately textured cakes and meringues, as well as for sweetening fruits and iced-drinks since it dissolves easily. In England, a sugar very similar to superfine sugar is known as caster or castor sugar, named after the type of shaker in which it is often packaged.
Brown sugar (light and dark) - Brown sugar retains some of the surface molasses syrup, which imparts a characteristic pleasurable flavor. Dark brown sugar has a deeper color and stronger molasses flavor than light brown sugar. Lighter types are generally used in baking and making butterscotch, condiments and glazes. The rich, full flavor of dark brown sugar makes it good for gingerbread, mincemeat, baked beans, and other full flavored foods.Demerara sugar - Popular in England, Demerara sugar is a light brown sugar with large golden crystals, which are slightly sticky from the adhering molasses. It is often used in tea, coffee, or on top of hot cereals.Muscovado or Barbados Sugar - Muscovado sugar, a British specialty brown sugar, is very dark brown and has a particularly strong molasses flavor. The crystals are slightly coarser and stickier in texture than “regular” brown sugar.
NOW WHICH IS BETTER, Honey vs. Sugar????Ask Alice says:
Honey actually contains the same basic sugar units as table sugar. Both contain glucose and fructose. Granulated table sugar, or sucrose, has glucose and fructose hooked together, whereas in honey, fructose and glucose remain in individual units. Fructose is sweeter than glucose, which is one of the reasons fructose is used in so many food products today. However, fructose does not convert to energy as efficiently as glucose. As a result, processed foods containing granulated sugar high in fructose convert to fat stores more easily than honey. Caloric content of honey differs from that of table sugar. One teaspoon of table sugar contains 16 calories, while one teaspoon of honey has 22 calories. While honey may have more calories, people may actually use less of it, since it is both sweeter and denser than table sugar. This being said, you actually may take in about the same amount of calories that you would with sugar or perhaps even less. Some nutrition experts say honey, unlike table sugar, contains small amounts of vitamins and minerals and that honey can aid in digestion. Researchers are currently looking into antioxidant levels of honey to see if they also can improve one's health. In addition, pure sucrose, or table sugar, is highly processed, while honey has only one processing step. (The honey is heated to prevent crystallization and yeast fermentation from happening during storage.) This has implications on the environment and on people who believe that minimally processed foods are healthier. Vegans, who don't use animal products, do not include honey in their eating plans because it is produced by bees. As far as "unmediated pure sugar," usually called unrefined sugar, goes, most researchers believe it to be a tad healthier than the processed form. The refining process, which is used to get us our good-ol' table sugar, removes all naturally occurring trace minerals from the sugar plant, leaving us with "empty calories." Moreover, unlike refined sugar, unrefined sugar has more fiber in it, which provides an added health bonus. Unrefined sugar's calories are identical to that of table sugar (16 calories/teaspoon).
Fit Day says:
It’s no secret that white sugar is a food you should consume sparingly, but is honey a healthier sweet option? Honey may be less refined and more natural than white sugar, but honey is still high in calories. Overall, honey is perhaps only slightly healthier than white sugar.
Most nutritionists recommend only part of your diet be made up of foods that are high in sugar. Sugar packs many calories and lacks the vitamins and minerals that your body needs to function normally. The big problem with honey is that it contains roughly 55% fructose, a type of sugar found mainly in fruits. Studies suggest high consumption of fructose could lead to several health problems, including obesity, heart disease and liver disease. Some studies have even shown that fructose actually drains minerals from your body.
Calories in HoneyHoney contains sugar and calories just like every other sweetener. One teaspoon of commercial natural honey contains 22 calories. Honey actually contains more calories than sugar, as one teaspoon of sugar contains 16 calories. However, honey isn’t truly more fattening than sugar, considering the fact that honey is sweeter than sugar. Overall, honey contains about the same amount of calories as white sugar.
Benefits of HoneyAlthough honey is a fattening food, it does provide some nutritional benefits lacking in white sugar. Honey does contain vitamins including niacin, riboflavin, thiamin and vitamin B6. But honey contains only traces of these minerals, and honey alone won’t help you meet the USDA’s recommended daily standards. These trace vitamins might make honey a slightly better choice than white sugar, but it’s still not a health food. Although numerous websites claim honey to be some kind of miracle food, most of these claims are mythical and unfounded. Remember, honey only contains 2% vitamins.
Honey’s Medicinal PurposesHoney might help you deal with a few common health ailments. For example, honey might alleviate cold symptoms, especially sore throats. When swallowed, honey coats the surface of your throat and soothes throat pain. Honey might also suppress a cough. In addition, if you suffer form chronic sinus infections you may find honey to be more effective than prescription medicines at combating their symptoms. Honey’s antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties give it a leg up over white sugar, which scientists haven’t found to treat any illnesses.
Natural Does Not Mean HealthyHoney is indeed a natural product. But so is sugar. Most manufacturers make white sugar by refining sugar beets and sugar cane, making white sugar a natural product. Clearly, natural is not always synonymous with healthy.
Your stomach doesn’t care whether you ingest white sugar or honey once it enters your bloodstream. To your body, sugar is sugar. All types of sugar should be consumed sparingly, even if it's honey. At the same time, honey contains a few trace vitamins and minerals and helps alleviate some health problems. While it might not be smart to consume too much honey, it is not a food you must completely avoid either.
While honey is sweeter than sugar and contains a little more nutrients, it also has more calories. In general, honey has more health benefits but both sugar and honey are harmful in excess.