Coconut sugar, also known as coco sugar or palm sugar, is a sweetener made from the sap of the flower buds of the coconut palm. It has been used as a traditional sweetener in Southeast Asian countries for centuries, and is now gaining popularity in Western countries as a natural and healthy alternative to refined white and brown cane sugars.
One of the main advantages of coconut sugar over other types of sugar is its lower glycemic index (GI) value. The glycemic index is a measure of how quickly a food raises blood sugar levels. Foods with a high GI value are rapidly absorbed and cause a rapid and large increase in blood sugar, while those with a low GI value are absorbed more slowly and cause a slower and smaller increase.
Coconut sugar has a GI value of 35, which is significantly lower than that of refined white sugar (65) and even lower than that of brown cane sugar (64). This means that coconut sugar is absorbed more slowly by the body and causes a slower and more gradual rise in blood sugar. This is particularly beneficial for people with diabetes or other blood sugar issues, as it can help to prevent blood sugar spikes and crashes.
Another advantage of coconut sugar is that it is a more nutritious sweetener than refined white and brown cane sugars. It contains small amounts of vitamins and minerals such as potassium, magnesium, zinc and iron, as well as antioxidants and phytochemicals that can provide additional health benefits. Coconut sugar also has a distinct caramel-like flavor which is considered tasty by many people.
It is important to note that it is still sugar and should be consumed in moderation. Also as it is made of sap of the flower buds of the coconut palm, it’s not considered vegan by some people.
In conclusion, coconut sugar is a healthier and more nutritious alternative to refined white and brown cane sugars. With a lower glycemic index, it can help to prevent blood sugar spikes and crashes and provide additional health benefits. Its distinct flavor makes it a great addition in some recipes.
Healthy Shrimp Adobo Recipe
1 1/2 pounds medium to large wild-caught shrimp (fresh or defrosted)
1/2 cup vinegar, preferably coconut or cane vinegar
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup coconut sugar (option to add 1/2 tsp of stevia if you like really sweet)
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium sized onion
salt and ground pepper to taste
1 tablespoon cooking oil
1 pc bay (laurel) leaf
1 pc fresh hot chili pepper (optional)
Wash and clean the shrimps thoroughly, being sure to all veins are removed.
In a bowl, mix the vinegar, soy sauce, pepper, and coconut sugar. Mix well.
In a frying pan, sauté the shrimp in the bacon fat for about a minute or until halfway cooked.
Remove the shrimp and any juices from the pan and set aside.
In the same frying pan, heat the oil and sauté the garlic and onions.
Put in the vinegar-soy sauce mixture and bay leaf, bring to a boil and let it thicken slightly before adding the par-cooked shrimps.
The shrimp will be done in a few minutes of less, do your best to not overcook them.
Season with salt and pepper according to taste.
Served over hot California grown organic rice (preferably jasmine). Enjoy!