5 min read.
The words "Zero Sugar" can be deceiving.
Most widely available drinks whether they be soda, energy drinks, hydration beverages, or protein shakes have zero sugar options, but most are full of artificial sweeteners that are going to zap your energy and make you feel worse!
Below you'll find a few all natural sweeteners you can feel good about.
#1 Stevia Leaf Extract
Stevia leaf extract is a natural sweetener that comes from the Stevia Plant.
Typically, it comes in a form called rebaudioside A (Reb-A) which is 200 times sweetener than sugar.
Stevia is great to use in beverages because of its ability to make an entire drink sweet with just a tiny amount.
Stevia doesn't cause blood sugar or insulin spikes but the thing you have to watch out for is Stevia Reb A is often mixed with high-calorie sweeteners like dextrose or maltodextrin to make it more like regular table sugar.
We use Stevia Reb A in our hydration + protein drink mix, ProLoco, to provide delicious all-natural zero-calorie sweetness.
Erythritol is a form of sugar alcohol that's found naturally in many plants.
It's got 0.24 calories per gram so it's considered a zero-calorie sweetener.
Like Stevia, it doesn't cause blood sugar or insulin to spike.
Erythritol has 70% of the sweetness of regular table sugar and can be used much like table sugar for baking.
You'll often see erythritol blended with stevia or monk fruit to achieve 100% of the sweetness of table sugar to make it a 1:1 sugar replacement.
#3 Monk Fruit Extract
Monk fruit extract comes from a small melon that grows in Southeast Asia
It's dried and turned into a sweetener that's 150-200 times sweeter than table sugar.
It's got zero calories and doesn't spike blood sugar or insulin.
Like Stevia, it's often mixed with other sugars that aren't good for you like dextrose or maltodextrin so watch out for that.
Monk fruit extract mixed with Erythritol is a great option though!
Thaumatin is a lesser-known sweetener that comes from the Katemfe fruit in Sudan.
It's got all the health benefits of the other sweeteners but it's 2000 times sweeter than sugar.
A great way to use this sweetener is in beverages.
We use a small amount of thaumatin in addition to stevia in our hydration + protein drink mix, ProLoco, to round out the sweet flavor and take away the hint of bitterness that Stevia can sometimes have!
What to Watch Out For
The following artificial sweeteners are found in many of the leading beverages out there and they have some sinister side effects.
Here are a few of the most common artificial sweeteners to avoid...
To learn more about why these should be avoided you can read our other article.
Most hydration drinks have two huge pitfalls. They're either loaded with sugar or they're sweetened with artificial sweeteners.
Protein drinks come with the same pitfalls plus they come in basically two flavors. Chocolate and Vanilla with some variations. They're usually milky, sometimes they're chalky, and they ARE NOT refreshing at all...until now!
We combined what's good about existing protein and hydration drinks and ditched all the bad stuff to create our crazy new hydration + protein drink!
Our drink mix, ProLoco, is a crazy combination of protein, hydrating electrolytes, and energizing vitamins that's refreshing and clear like a sports drink!
The best part is, we use all natural sweeteners so you can satisfy your sweet tooth without the negative side effects!
To check it out, CLICK HERE!