Demerara sugar or brown sugar is that exotic version of white sugar with a golden toffee colour to it. It is essentially a marginally less refined sugar which is made during the first pressing of sugarcane. It is made up of around 93% sucrose. White sugar on the other hand is made up of 97-98% sucrose. Demerara sugar has some minerals, but they are too less to be able to contribute to your daily recommended levels. The sugar got its name from the British colony of Demerara, which is now in republic of Guyana. This sugar was originally extracted from the sugarcane grown in volcanic soil of the region. The sugar has a distinct flavour to it with deep caramel-like touch to it. In this article, we will see if demerara sugar really healthier or in any way better than white sugar. Keep reading…
Delhi-based nutritionist Pooja Malhotra says that demerara sugar is less refined from white sugar. She says, “Demerara sugar has slightly less sucrose (88-93 percent) as compared to white sugar (96-98 percent). While white sugar has been completely refined to remove minerals, demerara sugar contains important minerals like magnesium, manganese, zinc, chromium, cobalt etc. However, these minerals are present in trace amounts. Both types of sugar provide essentially the same amount of calories (4 kcal per gram), and these minerals are needed by our body in small amounts to help digest the sugar. However, to meet our mineral requirements, we will have to load up on demerara sugar, which obviously makes no sense.”
She goes on to mention that if you choose demerara sugar over white, it will essentially be for its flavour rather than the nutrients it provides. “So remember, while raw sugars like demerara are nutritionally superior to white sugar, they can’t be called health foods and need to be used with the same caution as refined white sugar,” explains Pooja.
1. Demerara sugar is made from sugarcane
Demerara sugar is obtained from dehydrating syrup of sugarcane. The process is more or less like white sugar. The only difference is that is made by purifying syrup from sugarcane.
2. Minerals in demerara sugar are too little to count
Mineral content in sugar can be seen by the ash level or molasses in sugar. Most of the ash in sugar comes from minerals. This is provided that these minerals are not impurities. Ash level in demerara sugar is below 0.45% by most manufacturers of the sugar. This level is much lower than other alternatives of white sugar. Thus, neither demerara sugar nor white sugar contain enough minerals to be credited to being beneficial for health. Your daily intake of sugar should be in limited amounts only.
3. Demerara sugar has less sucrose and more molasses
When compared to white sugar, demerara sugar is found to have less sucrose and more molasses. 96 to 98% of demerara sugar is sucrose. However, minerals like magnesium, calcium, potassium in molasses, along with fructose and glucose help in bringing a balance. But the high sucrose content makes it very similar to white sugar. People on a weight loss regime are not going to benefit vastly by opting for white sugar of demerara sugar.
4. It is partially refined or raw sugar
The initial process of demerara and white sugar are the same. But demerara sugar is taken from the raw sugar of first pressing of cane. It is not processed any further and thus retains the molasses and colour of sugar. The grain of demerara sugar is a little bigger than white sugar.
5. Demerara sugar has a rich flavour
The unique flavour of demerara sugar is what makes it unique and intriguing. Its intense toffee flavour is a favourite of many. Brown sugar is a popular ingredient in cakes and pastries. Crystals of demerara sugar are larger than white sugar. They take longer than white sugar to dissolve in the drink.
(Pooja Malhotra is a nutritionist based in Delhi)
6 Warning Signs of Protein Deficiency
The list containing all the roles and functions of protein can be a really long one. This nutrient is necessary for building and repairing muscles and other tissues in the body such as the blood, cartilages, bones and skin. It is also important for the production of hormones or chemicals that regulate an assortment of bodily processes. Without sufficient amounts of protein in the diet or even in supplement form, it can be hard for anyone to attain optimal health.
It doesn’t come as a surprise why a lot of vegans, weight-watchers and others who are on restrictive diets to suffer from the various symptoms of protein deficiency.
By consuming foods that contain little or no protein, the body has no choice but to utilize protein that’s already in it, causing wasting of the tissues where protein is stored, such as in the muscles.
These are some of the warning signs you will observe if you are suffering from protein deficiency:
This is not caused by excess fat as you might suspect, but by the inflammation of the salivary glands. This condition usually takes place if there’s an ongoing protein-carbohydrate imbalance within you.
Edema is the reason for this, a condition wherein excessive fluid collect in the tissues. This happens because protein is one of the various components that factor in your body’s fluid balance.
Again, this has something to do with the pooling of water in the tissues, known in the medical world as edema. There’s an assortment of health conditions that lead to edema, and one of them is protein deficiency.
This condition may be brought about by a handful of things. One of them is not having enough protein in the diet. This doesn’t really come as a surprise as your hair is mostly made up of protein.
Excessive skin dryness
Not getting enough protein can cause the skin to end up really dry and flaky, and even develop rashes. Protein deficiency makes you more prone to getting sunburned too.
Lethargy or brain fog
Your energy and cognitive functioning are also affected when protein deficiency strikes. As mentioned earlier, protein is vital for the normal production of hormones. Some of these hormones have something to do with stress, energy production and mental alertness.
To avoid these problems, it’s important to get sufficient amounts of protein daily. There is a simple formula for calculating how much protein you need to consume everyday: your weight in pounds / 2 = daily protein requirement in grams.
Common protein form linked to cardiac, metabolic diseases: Study
A form of protein, clusterin, has been associated with many different facets of cardiometabolic syndrome risk through its actions in the liver, suggests a new research study.
In addition, it is linked to increased cardiovascular disease risk and mortality, high blood pressure, harmful cholesterol levels and fatty liver disease.
Cardiometabolic syndrome (CMS) is a cluster of conditions that increase a person’s risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes. These conditions include high blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist and abnormal cholesterol or triglyceride levels.
“Our goal was to discover new factors produced by the cells in fat tissue that have an impact on cardiometabolic disease.
In particular, we wanted to identify those important to maintaining the framework of fat tissue, called the extracellular matrix, which becomes dysfunctional in obesity,” said David Bradley, Assistant Professor at The Ohio State University in the US.For the study, the team included a small group of 54 obese and 18 lean patients.
The findings, published in the journal, Diabetes Care, showed that clusterin, which is overproduced from the fat cells of obese patients, is strongly related to insulin resistance, said the study.
Insulin resistance is a major cause of Type-2 Diabetes, and patients with obesity commonly have both metabolic and cardiovascular complications. “Fat cells increase clusterin production as they enlarge in obesity.
Clusterin may be a biomarker of disease, as well as a therapeutic target to potentially prevent this disease,” said lead researcher Willa Hsueh, Professor at the varsity. “This collaborative research is shedding new light on the importance of clusterin on ‘cardiometabolic syndrome’, which may eventually lead to developing new treatments for this life-threatening combination of diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity,” said K. Craig Kent, dean at the varsity.
CMS, which affects about 25 per cent of the world’s population, is now recognised as a disease entity by the World Health Organization and the American Society of Endocrinology. Further translational research involving mouse models is needed to learn more about how clusterin impacts each of the CMS components and whether administrating clusterin-inhibiting antibodies inhibits CMS, the study noted.
Drinking orange juice daily may keep strokes at bay
Drinking orange juice daily may cut your risk of deadly strokes by almost a quarter, suggests a study. The study, published in the British Journal of Nutrition, showed that people who consumed the juice each day saw a reduction in the risk of a brain clot by 24 per cent, the Daily Mail reported.
Further, the rates of heart disease were also reduced in regular drinkers, who were 12 to 13 per cent less likely to suffer with damaged arteries.Fresh fruit juices have long been thought of as healthy.
But consumers in recent years have been put off by warnings over their high sugar content.Advertise With Us The researchers noted that the health benefits in terms of stroke prevention could outweigh the risks from sugar content. “We found a favourable association with pure fruit juice consumption,” said researchers from the Netherlands National Institute for Public Health.
It’s not just orange juice that has this benefit, other fruit juices also appear to cut the risk, they noted. Juice is thought to contain many of the naturally-occurring plant substances found in whole fruit that can protect blood vessels against disease. However, the team said despite the obvious benefits of juice, they would still recommend eating whole fruit as well, as there are more studies confirming its benefits. For the study, the team examined nearly 35,000 men and women aged between 20 and 70 years.
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