Sweet on Natural Sugars
When we were kids, we were both sugar fiends in our own, individual ways. Tamara’s diet heavily consisted of hamburgers, French fries, pizza, lots of chocolate bars and cookies (no need to pray for her soul, she grew up to become a holistic nutritionist). Sarah came from a non-traditional ‘hippy’ household, where the pantry was stocked with only the best natural and organic foods that Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s deemed acceptable. Sarah had a sugar obsession of her own and would stash Twizzlers, Starbursts and Kit-Kat bars under her mattress to be eaten at a later time when her parents were not around.
Although both of these sugar obsessions seem harmless, we both grew up with health issues of our own, where sugar played a leading role in the cause. Tamara suffered from severe IBS and chronic stomach pain. Her friends would have to escort her to the bathroom after meals and sit with her while they sang Indigo Girls songs until her pain would disappear. It wasn’t until she started to clean up her diet and eliminate refined sugars from her life that she eliminated her IBS completely and found pleasure in natural sugars and tons and tons of kale.
Sarah grew up as serious ballet dancer with a hidden junk food fetish and overtime developed Chronic Fatigue Syndrome as well as hormonal imbalance. She was always so tired and spent most of her days wishing she could sleep, like her cats. Although sugar was not the only contributing cause to her CFS and hormonal imbalance, it played a major role in creating fatigue because it would crash her blood sugar. Overtime, Sarah was able to disappear her CFS through a whole foods diet and replacing refined sugar with natural ones.
By now, you must be seeing the common theme here. Refined sugar is no friend of ours! It messes with our blood sugar, can cause hormonal imbalance, menstrual irregularities, fatigue, bloating, uncomfortable weight, decreased immunity, acne and tons more! In an effort to still please our taste buds and not be complete social outcasts we switched over to natural sugars like raw honey, maple syrup, fruit and dates! What makes these sweeteners particularly awesome is that besides being sweet as pie, they contain beneficial nutrients to actually nourish your body while nourishing your palette.
Here is our favorite gluten-free recipe for double chocolate *naturally sweetened cookies with coconut icing!
Double Chocolate Cookies
3/4 cup dates (can soften them by soaking in some hot water)
2 Tbsp flaxseeds ground + 3 Tbsp warm water
1/4 cup warm water
3 Tbsp grapeseed oil or coconut oil (melted)
3 Tbsp cocoa powder or raw cacao powder
pinch sea salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup chocolate chips
2 drops mint extract (optional)
4 Tbsp coconut milk (chilled, full fat, so that it is creamy)
2 Tbsp coconut oil (softened)
2 tsp maple syrup
1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. In a food processor blend up the dates, flaxseeds, water, and oil.
3. Mix in the cocoa powder, baking soda, chocolate chips, and mint extract.
4. Spread the batter out in a baking pan, as if you were making brownies.
5. Bake for 30 minutes, or until slightly crispy on the edges.
6. Allow to cool. Use a cookie cutter or circular glass to cut cookies.
7. Spread icing on top. Sprinkle with additional coconut and cocoa powder.
If you are feeling stuck in your sugar or eating habits and are looking to break free of ‘just not feeling that great’, join us for The Great Sugar Detox starting on April 10th!
Our online classes get you out of your eating funks and give you the tools you need to have lasting health and wellness! These online classes are designed to fit into your busy life and teach you how to feel really great by eating good, whole foods.
1. The Great Sugar Detox starting April 10th
Take 15% off for being a Sweet On Veg reader & use this Promo Code: SGR247
2. The 30 Day Challenge starting April 17th
These fabulous nutrition tips and recipe were provided by Sarah Grossman and Tamara Green, co-founders of The Living Kitchen Wellness Group, located in Toronto.
For more amazing tips, inspiring recipes and encouraging nutritionists who can empower you to be healthy, check out www.livingkitchenwellness.com.