Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Agave, HFCS, and Some Banana Chocolate Dreams Fro Yo

Before I begin this post I want to answer I question I received about my yogurt post. I was asked why I don't buy fat free yogurt. The reason is because I just don't think it tastes as good as yogurt with a little fat. I don't buy the full fat yogurt (because full fat yogurt typically has a lot of saturated fat) but I usually buy yogurt with about 3-4 grams of fat per serving, simply for the creamy texture and wonderful taste!

I'm glad everyone enjoyed yesterday's Thurman Burger post! I loved reading about all of your recent indulgences. I was drooling the entire time ;)

Sugar is Sugar

The other day I was contacted by our local NBC4 station to provide my thoughts on High Fructose Corn Syrup. While I don't have a clip of the video, you can read the article here; High fructose corn syrup. If you read my blog regularly you know that I don't really consider HFCS any worse that regular table sugar. It's 55% fructose, compared to table sugar's 50% fructose. Not much of a difference in my opinion. Need more evidence? I tweeted this article earlier this week.

What about Agave Nectar? A few weeks ago I tweeted an article about Agave Nectar, which confirmed my opinion that it's really not any better for you than other sweeteners. To read the article, click here. The bottom line was this;

The bottom line is that refined agave sweeteners are not inherently healthier than sugar, honey, high-fructose corn syrup, or any other sweetener. Nutritionally and functionally, agave syrup is similar to high-fructose corn syrup and sucrose (Karo) syrup. It does contain small amounts of calcium, potassium, and magnesium, but not enough to matter nutritionally.

Question: What are your thoughts on HFCS and Agave?

Coming Up
Tomorrow I will also be posting a bit of info about the new Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Have you see the preliminary write-up yet? I will also provide a little update of my life. I've been quite busy!

Thanks for reading everyone! Have a wonderful day.


  1. Oh, I am a HUGE fro yo fan!! Yum!

    How cool that you got to go on your local news! You're a celebrity!


    i didn't know HFCS and actual sugar were so close in percentages!

  3. I avoid HFCS for a variety of reasons, possible mercury content being one of them (, unsustainable. That said I do not think agave nectar is a perfect alternative to go crazy with. It is present in a few foods I buy but like any other sweeteners moderation is key. Your soy ice-cream looks delicious. I need to try dark chocolate dreams, I've had Saratoga Peanut Butter in the dark chocolate though, which is delicious!

  4. I can't stand the hype with agave. It's sugar people! I don't use it. If I am going to make something, I use real sugar.

    I am also the same with yogurt. I love Fage 2%. It tastes so much better! Unfortunately, many times my grocery store sells out of it and only has the 0%.

  5. I do believe that sugar is sugar. BUT I'd rather not support the corn industry by buying anything with high fructose corn syrup. I still prefer agave because raw agave is unprocessed and if I'm going to eat a sweetener I'd like it in its most wholesome state, even if the nutritional benefits aren't there.

  6. Thanks for the post, I'm going through a "what-the-heck-is-safe-for-my-kids-to-eat" phase, and the sugar/sugar alternatives/sugar subs have been a big part of that!

  7. I couldn't agree more. Sugar is sugar, people! I love the term "clean eating" because it endorses eating anything "natural" regardless of what's in the stuff. Just because it occurs "naturally" doesn't mean it's good for you! Case in point: marijuana.

    Kidding, kidding :)

  8. That sounds delicious! I saw a recipe for banana "ice cream" the other day that simply called for food processed frozen bananas. I'm excited to see how it turns out. I think I'll add a little PB to the mix as well.

  9. you know, it's funny...i actually knew that HFCS was 55% fructose while table sugar is 50%, but i never made the connection in my head that maybe that means they are not that different!

    i think the main problem with HFCS is that it is found in processed foods that you wouldn't expect to have sugar like soups, crackers, breads, etc. i try to avoid processed foods, but the average american is getting a lot more added sugar in their diet than they realize!

    i'm soooo sick of the hype around agave nectar!

  10. I don't buy fat free yogurt either. If it has less fat, it's got more carbs (sugar) usually, and I'd rather get the fat because (like you) I don't eat much fat.

    I agree that sugar is sugar, but I still have mixed feelings about HFCS. I think it's just best to avoid most added sugars.

    Your froyo looks delish!

  11. wow, I didn't know that agave nectar and sugar were pretty much the same thing! I don't use agave that much, but I do use it, and thought it was a much better alternative!
    Do you have any opinion on stevia? I use that quite often to sweeten tea and coffee.

  12. NICE! I'm off to the grocery store for bunches (and bunches) of bananas!

  13. First off, I really enjoy reading your posts. You always have something informative to share and it always makes me think.

    I use both agave and regular sugar when I need to sweeten things up. I've been doing some research on sweetners but it's difficult to know who to believe, the claims of each product are so varied.

    I just stick with using sweetners in moderation.

    My favorite frozen treat has to be Steven Colbert Ben and Jerrys ice cream. I think it is called Ameri-cone dream. So good!

  14. mmm your fro yo looks so delicious! You are so creative.

    On a hot day, I love almond chocolate coated icecream bars!

    My thoughts on all sweetners are the same, and i recently came to this conclusion: I like Sugar, it tastes the best, and as far as I know, it's no better or worse then the rest.

  15. Yummm your fro-yo looks great! Favorite frozen treat is definitely fro-yo and soft serve (the lite choice obviously haha). I avoid HFCS and I don't really use agave either. I stick with stevia.

  16. I love fro yo. Do fruity frozen drinks count too? If so, then I'm in.

    I have to be with you on the sugar. I think sugar is sugar. As my mom is a type 2 diabetic, I know that agave and corn syrup do the same thing, so even if one is more natural or better, it's still sugar.
    All that said, I try to not add sweetener to my food, but I have a crazy sweet tooth that I try to combat with fruit and fro yo which I'm full aware is loaded with sugary goodness!

  17. I completely agree that sugar is sugar, regardless of what it's called. That being said, I do try to use the least-processed form of sugar I can find, which I why I usually use raw agave. Would you say that helps at all, or does the refining process not really matter too much?

  18. why do you tease me so with your ice cream machinery. that is definitely on my wedding registry haha in life i want an ice cream machine. i would be SUCH a dr. frankenstein if i had one of those babes

  19. That fro yo is so awesome- you really amaze me with how often you use your ice cream machine, I just get so lazy haha. But I have to step it up!!! In fact, I really need to use some bananas...haha

    The agave trend really annoys me, as do most random nutrition trends and frankly I don't really like agave so I don't eat it. I also avoid HFCS but thats because it seems to bother my stomach more than regular sugar, otherwise I have no major problems with it- in moderation of course!

  20. if I'm buying regular yogurt (not greek) then I will sometimes buy the low fat version - like stonyfield.

    I have to say, I love dark chocolate dreams. Although, I actually think White Chocolate Wonderful is better (especially on s'mores!)!

    My favorite frozen treat is really good quality ice cream. Like Moomers or Ronnybrook.

  21. i so agree with you that I prefer the low fat fro yo than the fat free stuff! that tastes like air to me with no flavor, and I usually end up eating less of the low fat kind because it is richer and so much tastier!

    i have totally moved on from those falvored PB's be honset I was never a HUGE fan...I like my PB straight up!!!

  22. Ha,I was discussing about HFCS this morning with my co worker. But the info about the close fructose percentages is new to me.

    These days my favorite frozen treat is haagen daaz, dulce de leche ice cream.

  23. frozen yogurt is my favorite treat, i like it very sour! :)

  24. ive heard so many conflicting things about agave that i dont know what to think about it anymore. i personally find it spikes my blood sugar just as much as white sugar so i dont buy it.. but i wont say i dont eat it because many products/bars ive had were made with it.

    yea i can see myself getting sick of chocolate nut butters if i had them too many times. kind of like nutella.. made me so sick after awhile.

    xoxo <3

  25. I saw the same thing to patients when they ask me about HFCS..sugar is sugar!
    Your dessert looks delish. I have never tried the dark chocolate dreams. It looks tasty, especially with banana. yum!

  26. Its 5:30am and now I am craving frozen yogurt! That looks wonderful :) Peanutbutter, banana and chocolate is my favorite combination!

  27. It appears that the main concern with agave is that the fructose content is quite a bit higher than regular table sugar. However; since you use about half as much agave, wouldn't that decrease the amount of fructose content to approximately the same as table sugar?

  28. ha, I will test my thought, your post give me some good ideas, it's truly amazing, thanks.

    - Norman