Sugar from various sources

Avoiding processed sugar.

As many people experience, there was a time in my life that I had to change my diet so I had no processed sugar. I went to every health food store and read so many labels I thought my brain would explode. It came down to a time I just wanted to make a simple tossed salad but I couldn’t find a bottle of salad dressing without sugar, in one form or another. I learned the multiple types of added sugar; one of them being xanthan gum.

Xanthan gum is a polysaccharide that is produced by fermentation of carbohydrates by a gram-negative bacterium (Xanthomonas campestris) and is a thickening and suspending agent used especially in pharmaceuticals and prepared foods —called also xanthan. I decided to use things that I know are sweet to add flavor. To make my salad dressing I used basic ingredients to make vinaigrette. The twist came when I used a fruit puree instead of sugar. I used pureed mango, bananas, orange juice and pear juice. The dressing was outstanding! The fruit I used not only brought the sugar I needed to the dressing but various vitamins. According to the United States Department of Agriculture: Bananas are rich in potassium, oranges are rich in vitamin C and mangos vitamin K and C, and pears potassium. Michigan State University Extension recommends the USDA website to check and see which valuable nutrients food contains.

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