Coconut Tips

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  • Coconut “Sap” (Sugar)
    Sheryl  Some folk are substituting this product instead of using the normal sugar made from sugarcane. Wiki says that the major component of coconut sugar is 70–79% sucrose. Partially refined or raw sugar is 97% sucrose and after refining, 99.95% sucrose. Molasses is added – for light brown they add 12%, for dark brown they add 13%.   White sugar can be made from sugar cane or from sugar beets which grow in a temperate climate. Both kinds are 99.95 percent sucrose and that minuscule 0.05 percent made up of trace differences in minerals and proteins can have an effect. Just google: sugar beet vs sugar cane and read the full article here:  It can affect the outcome of cooking certain recipes eg crème brulee won’t caramelize on top using beet sugar.

    ( Coconut palms are one of the oldest flowering trees in the world.  For centuries throughout the tropics, the traditional practice of “tapping” coconut trees for their prized “sap” is a time-honoured art form.  The nutrient-rich sap that exudes from the blossoms before they mature into coconuts, is used to make many unique and nutritious food products. The principles of tapping the coconut tree blossoms for their sap, bears only minor resemblance to the practice of tapping maple trees for maple syrup production.  Containers used to collect the sap are made out of hollow bamboo tubes that are fastened onto the thick fleshy stems covered in small flowers. The freshly gathered coconut tree sap is oyster white in colour, has a nearly neutral pH, and is already inherently sweet tasting by nature.  Whereas, the sap from a maple tree (as well as the juice from an agave cactus) has very little readily available sweetness, and requires long heating times in order to produce the sweet syrup you purchase in the bottle. The most remarkable thing about tapping a coconut tree is that once it is tapped, it flows its sap continuously for the next 20 years.  From a sustainability viewpoint, the harvestable energy production from tapping coconut trees for their sap (which yields 5,000 litres per hectare), rather than allowing them to produce fruit, is 5-7 times higher per hectare than coconut oil production from mature coconuts. 

    (wiki)  Coconut sugar (also known as coco sugar, coconut palm sugar or coco sap sugar) is a sugar produced from the sap of cut flower buds of the coconut palm. Coconut sugar has been used as a traditional sweetener for thousands of years in the South-East Asian regions where the coconut palm is in abundant supply. The world’s largest producers of coconuts are the Philippines and Indonesia. In some areas, predominantly in Thailand, the terms “coconut sugar” and “palm sugar” are often used interchangeably. However, coconut sugar is different both in taste, texture and manufacture methods from palm sugar, which is made from the sap in the stems of the Palmyra palm, the date palm, the sugar date palm, the sago palm or the sugar palm.

    (authoritynutrition) Is Coconut Sugar a better choice than white sugar? According to the Philippine Food and Nutrition Research Institute, coconut sugar has a lower glycemic index (35) than white sugar (60 to 65), meaning it doesn’t spike your blood glucose and insulin like table sugar does. This is much lower than table sugar but I do have a problem with making any conclusions based on this study alone. GI can vary greatly between individuals and this study included only 10 people. GI can also vary between different batches of food meaning that products from other manufacturers might have slightly different effects. In their graph they are comparing coconut sugar to glucose, not table sugar (sucrose). I’d like to see it compared to regular table sugar, because that is what coconut sugar is being used to replace. Overall, I’m not convinced that coconut sugar is really as low on the glycemic index as they claim. Perhaps the Inulin fibre in it slows absorption somewhat, but I’d like to see another study before I make a conclusion.