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Pure Monk Fruit Powder: A Sugar Substitute without Additives

Monk Fruit

Sugar substitutes derived from plants such as stevia, and more recently monk fruit, have been gaining popularity among consumers looking for more natural ways to sweeten their foods and drinks while keeping their caloric intake in check. Monk fruit, also known by its Chinese name luo han guo, has close to zero calories per serving once it's dried and turned into powder. However, many monk fruit based sweeteners and supplements contain additives and fillers, some of which may negate the benefits of choosing a monk fruit based sugar substitute. The good news is that it is possible to find pure monk fruit powder that contains no additives or fillers. Read on to get the full scoop.

Not All Monk Fruit Based Sweeteners Are 100% Monk Fruit

Liquid drops and powders derived monk fruit have been sold as dietary supplements or high-intensity sweeteners under various brand names including Lakanto, Purefruit, Swanson's Pure Lo Han Sweetener, Monk Fruit in the Raw, Nectresse, and Julian Bakery's Pure Monk. For those who like the convenience of online shopping, many of these products can be found on Amazon, both in the online retailer's global store Amazon.com and its local UK shop Amazon.co.uk. But, if it's the potential health benefits of monk fruit or its weight loss promoting properties rather than its sweetening properties that have piqued your interest, beware: not all monk fruit based sweeteners are 100% made of monk fruit. Many sweeteners and dietary supplements that are sold with "Monk Fruit" or "Lou Han Guo" written in big letters on the packaging are not pure monk fruit extract. Instead, they contain fillers and additives, and some of these additional ingredients may nullify the benefits of pure monk fruit. Each additive or filler also comes with its own set of potential side effects, so if you buy a sweetener that contains several ingredients and have concerns about potential side effects, it is not enough that you only read about the safety of monk fruit; you will have to check the safety profiles of the other ingredients as well.

For example, if you want to buy monk fruit powder because you like the fact that pure monk fruit extract is low in calories and has a low Glycemic Index (GI) rating, beware: some monk fruit sweeteners contain molasses which is by no means low in calories nor does it rank low on the GI. Or, if you are trying to avoid ingredients that may have been derived from genetically modified (GM) corn, make sure you check whether the product contains erythritol or dextrose—these popular fillers are typically, though not always, derived from GM-corn. If you buy pure monk fruit extract or powder that contains no additives or fillers, you'll be safe as there is no such thing as GM monk fruit.

So, Where Can You Buy Pure, Additive-Free Monk Fruit Powder?

The online retailer Amazon sells Julian Bakery's one-ingredient monk fruit powder here. This intensely sweet, brownish powder is marketed as "100% pure, all-natural, virtually no-calorie sugar substitute, derived from the goodness of real fruit". A tub of this sugar substitute may seem a bit pricey at first, but as it is about 100-250 times more intense than table sugar, you won't need much to sweeten your foods and drinks. To learn more about this product, click here.

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