Benefits of Raisins as Natural Sugar
November 11th, 2016
When you are trying to eat healthy, one thing you want to do is cut back on sugar. And when you feel the urge for something sweet, raisins are a very nutritious option. However, some would argue that raisins are high in sugar and therefore cannot be good. Some question whether the sugar in raisins will affect blood sugar levels.
In a half sense, raisins may affect blood sugars levels for two reasons. For one, any fruit high in carbs can offset your blood sugar levels if you eat more than your body can handle. But the carbs found in fruits are far more nutritious than the carbs in cakes, white breads and soft drinks. In fact, raisins contain more healthy fiber, vitamins and antioxidants. Secondly, some raisins actually have added refined sugar. These types of raisins you definitely want to avoid. Try eating only pure raisins that are naturally dried and have no added sugars.
A Large Variety of Grapes
The definition of a raisin is a dried grape. Basically, there are three types of grapes; wine grapes, table grapes and grapes particularly for raisins. Raisin type grapes are grown in many different regions of the world. They are also eaten raw, cooked, baked and brewed. In the UK, Australia, New Zealand and Ireland, the raisins come in categories. There are large dark coloured grapes for drying, golden coloured sultana grapes and currants which are a tiny Black Corinth seedless grape.
There are also other varieties of raisins that are produced in Asia called Monukka grapes. These raisins can sometimes be found in the west at ethnic groceries
Another thing to keep in mind when comparing sugars or taste, the sugar content of raisins depends on the variety. But for the most part, the sugar content only varies slightly by less than a gram. Basically, the sweeter the raisin the more sugar it has.
The sweetness of raisins is from high concentrated sugars. By weight, raisins are approximately 30% fructose and 28% glucose. The sugars in raisins can also crystallize within the fruit after a long time. However, the crystallization makes the raisins grainy.
Raisins are also high in carbs and contain healthy fiber, protein, vitamin, calcium, potassium and iron. Raisins are also high in antioxidants, electrolytes and minerals.
And because of their natural sugar, raisins are a great source for quick energy. As well, raisins are said to aid digestion, enhance bone health, aid in treating infections, support mouth health, help anemia, protect eyes and prevent cancer.
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