According to the Environmental Working Group, ‘natural flavors’ are the fourth most common substance in food products. It is the only ingredient that you will find in most of your food products, along with water, salt, and sugar.It is quite clear that most, if not all, food items contain flavoring. In sweeter options, you will find the names of sweeteners listed on the ingredients label. Today, you will find that most food labels mention the term ‘natural flavors.’ This means that it is very likely that you may be consuming foods containing ‘natural flavors’ or ‘natural sweeteners.’So what does it mean when a product is naturally flavored or sweetened? You may have a few ideas, but the chances are that you’re not entirely sure. Let’s see what natural flavors and sweeteners are.
What are Natural Flavors and Sweeteners?
If you’re wondering what natural flavors and sweeteners are, here is a brief explanation to help you understand.
As the name already suggests, natural flavors do not originate in the lab like their synthetic alternatives. In fact, natural flavoring comprises naturally- occurring compounds.Manufacturers obtain these flavors by harvesting ingredients that are easily found in nature. Or, they may collect natural byproducts that are produced as a result of processing organic materials. These organic materials may include plants and fruits, etc.Many food manufacturing companies believe that natural flavors can add a distinct taste to their items that are eventually associated with the brand name. Some other companies believe this approach to be necessary for the restoration of flavors that are often lost during the manufacturing process.Some common ingredients in natural flavoring include:
Amyl Acetate: You will find this in banana-flavored baked goods as this compound is a result of distillation from bananas.
Acetoin: This organic compound adds a buttery flavor to food products
Benzaldehyde: Manufacturers extract Benzaldehyde from different sources such as cinnamon oil and almonds. It adds the aroma of almonds to flavored foods.
Citral: Citral is a common compound found in citrus-flavored food items. The compound naturally occurs in pimento, orange, lemon, and lemongrass.
Natural sweeteners are typically a part of sweet foods and beverages such asenergy drinks and baked goods. Generally, these sweeteners refer to naturally-occurring sugar compounds: glucose and fructose.In contrast, many products also use complex sugars like sucrose for an added sweet flavor. However, this is not as safe as it can overload the human body, organs like the liver in particular. Sucrose found in processed foods is especially not healthy as the body is unable to use it by converting it into energy or nutrition.This makes natural sweeteners all the more important. Sugars found in natural sweeteners are comparatively easier to metabolize and convert into energy. Not only this, but they also contain essential nutrients, minerals, antioxidants, and enzymes. This makes them healthier and safer than artificial sweeteners and processed sugars like sucrose.Common examples of natural sweeteners are:
Stevia: Stevia contains zero calories and is safe to use for diabetic patients and people with sugar sensitivity
Raw Honey: Raw honey contains many beneficial nutrients and enzymes
Coconut Sugar: It is rich in nutrients like vitamins, iron, and potassium
Maple Syrup: Maple syrup is filled with zinc and manganese
Natural flavors and sweeteners refer to those chemicals that are not developed in laboratories. These add flavor or sweetness to food items and beverages in place of artificial flavorings. Many energy drinks are filled with the complete opposite. However, FITAID ENERGY is naturally flavored and sweetened with ingredients that are actually good for you. These beverages have no sucralose, no aspartame, no plastic, and no fillers. Instead, all blends of FITAID ENERGY are sweetened with organic agave nectar and organic stevia leaf extract. With only 3 grams of sugar and 15 calories, FITAID ENERGY is no match for its competitors! Do you have a favorite LIFEAID product? Tag us on Instagram! @FITAID
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