Desserts & Ice Creams

Agave vs. Honey, Carob vs. Dark Chocolate

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We did it! We signed the papers and made an offer…..but it was counter-offered by the owners last night  What are we doing? Making another counter-offer of course! We’ll hear back tonight. What an ordeal.

Last night, after hearing that our offer was declined, Nick and I watched the movie 2012. Do you want to spend 2.5 hours watching the most ridiculous movie ever made? Go ahead and rent it yourself! It was so lame. I laughed pretty hard throughout the movie, just making fun of it.

Q & A

About a month ago Kristen of Change of Pace asked me about Agave Nectar vs. Honey, and Carob Chips vs. Dark chocolate. Here is some information.

AGAVE

I recently did a post about HFCS and Agave nectar on our new workplace wellness blog. To read the post, click here. For a brief overview, dietitians really aren’t recommending agave nectar as an alternative, “healthier” sweetener. While it may be “slightly less processed”, it is actually 84% fructose! This is much higher than high fructose corn syrup. What’s wrong with fructose? Nothing, really, especially in the form of fruit, but too much can cause major health issues. Fructose is not used for energy quite as readily as glucose, and most of it is taken up by the liver and turned to glycogen or stored as fat. THIS IS ONLY A PROBLEM IF YOU CONSUME TOO MUCH OF IT! Since sweeteners such as HFCS are found in so many foods, it’s no wonder it gets the blame for all the chronic disease and the obesity epidemic. In comparison, honey is 50% fructose, 44% glucose, and 1% sucrose (fructose and glucose combined).

My opinion? I’d choose honey over agave nectar in a heartbeat. If you want the less processed honey, choose organic.

CAROB CHIPS

It’s hard to compare carob chips to dark chocolate because it really depends on what kind of dark chocolate you buy. Some brands are much better than others. For example, if you buy “Dark Chocolate Chips”, chances are they are just darkened chocolate, and are not much different than milk chocolate chips. If you buy Ghirardelli 85% dark chocolate, or Lindt’s 85% dark chocolate, they actually provide many benefits. The same might be true with the different brands of carob chips, but I really don’t know enough about carob chips to be sure. Overall, here are some nutritional differences between the two:

  • Carob chips are said to be free of oxalate;Oxalate binds many minerals, such as calcium and iron, and may impede their absorption. It’s ok to get some oxalates in your diet, just not too  Dark chocolate has a good amount of oxalate. So does spinach.
  • Dark chocolate is packed with heart healthy and chemoprotective (cancer preventative) phytonutrients!Carob chips? Not so much.
  • Carob chips have more calories than dark chocolate, but this probably depends on the brand.
  • Carob chips have more calcium, but dark chocolate has more iron(again, this depends on the brand).
  • Carob chips have about the same amount of fiber, but more protein than dark chocolate (again, this depends on the brand).
  • The author of one of my favorite books, Dr. Steven Pratt, tweeted the other day that a serving of dark chocolate a day (60% or above) may have a beneficial effect on metabolism!

Bottom Line: There are benefits of both. I’m sticking to my dark chocolate

Coming Up

I’m really not sure what’s coming up in future CandidRD posts. Obviously I will keep you updated on out quest to buy a house, but as for topics, I’m not sure. I guess you’ll have to be surprised!

Have a great day everyone. Thanks for reading!

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