Bay Area Skeptics

The San Francisco Bay Area's skeptical organization since 1982


Bottles of organic agave nectarOh, Apartment Therapy, your credulousness is the gift that keeps on giving (specifically, giving me things to write about in blog posts).

This time, someone discovered an article that says, oh my god, agave nectar is not a magical health food: it is actually sugar! And just as bad for you as some other types of sugar, like, for example, sugar. Or even, maybe, high fructose corn syrup, which we all know is basically heroin because it will addict you and then kill you.

This basically shot the puppy of some of the commenters, who had been so sure that agave syrup — I refuse to call something nectar unless it is actually flower juice — was super healthy.

UGH! Seriously? I may be pouring mine down the drain. I just bought a HUGE bottle when it was on sale at whole foods.

I’m shocked. I had no idea that agave was not healthy for you. Like spookiefish, I feel somewhat betrayed. I stopped buying it because it was so expensive. Now I have another key reason to not buy it again in the future.

Others joined me in banging their heads against their desks at the idea that people thought it was healthy to begin with:

I was never on the agave bandwagon. I’ve been a vegetarian for 30 years, and it has always been amusing to me how many vegetarians (usually in the first stages of conversion) run screaming from white sugar but begin to ingest every other sweetener on the planet with abandon. Maple syrup, honey, barley and rice derived syrups, raw sugar, and now agave–it’s all just SUGAR. And it’s no better for you if the label has Native American-esque leaves on it than that yellow box from Domino.

The real problem with agave? They can’t just cut the plant and let it flow like mother’s milk from Gaia:

I’m rather surprised! I use agave in my tea, not because it’s “better” than sugar but because I logically believed that something natural is better than something unnatural, and I thought that agave syrup was less processed than white sugar was. Apparently I was wrong. But apparently this topic is up for debate as well. I will be doing more research for sure.

Actually, agave syrup is totally good for you: a guy who sells agave syrup says so!

People! Do some research about the products you like and don’t believe everything you read – ie THIS ARTICLE!

check this out.…

Sad that the internet has degraded the integrity of journalism.

But in this crazy world, who can you trust?

I came across this article that I thought was very well sourced by reputable journals.

(according to that site, agave can’t be trusted because it’s not a raw food, and therefore doesn’t have “all its enzymes, nutrients, and ‘life force’ intact.”)

Even though agave is out, there are still natural sweeteners which are totally good for you!

Stevia is the best –no chemicals…no calories…no sugar. Tastes good and a TINY bit goes a long way –the only downfall for me is that I can’t quite figure out the measurement conversions for baking/cooking

If you really care about any of this and not just as something to complain about, pay attention to where your food comes from.
You can find organic, locally made honey and maple syrup which both have health benefits. Find something with the name of the farm on it and look it up to see what you think about it.
Also read about palm (coconut) sugar. It is very low on the Glycemic Index, contains a lot of vitamins and minerals, and is a renewable resource that can be tapped year round.

Fortunately, we all know the best place to turn for medical advice: the internet!

Thanks so much for this post!!! In researching more on the points brought up here, I found out that I have a disorder called fructose malabsorption! So I happily threw away my agave and altered my diet according to guidelines for people with this disorder, and in just a couple days I’m noticing a huge difference in how I feel! Amazing! I’ve struggled with this for years, getting no help from doctors, and now I finally know what the problem is and how to deal with it.


One comment on “Agavalicious

  1. Allan Griff says:

    Sugar of all kinds is s nutrient, provides energy, it’s how much that matters. I am careful for medical reasons not images. I ve written on why we eat what we do. Images matter too.but often violate science to maintain need for miracles

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