Is it more healthy to sweeten coffee with honey than sugar?

Spaniards consume an average of 71.5 grams of sugar per day, according to the Anibes study. A figure that is well above the 25 grams recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO). As we already have in BUENAVIDA, most of that excess comes from the consumption of sugary soft drinks (22.5% of the total) and the second source is table sugar (a 17.8%), which we use, for example, to sweeten coffee every morning. For this reason, there are those who choose to change this ingredient for others who believe they are healthier, such as honey. But is this really healthier?

"Like table sugar, honey is considered a type of freesugar," explains Manuel Moñino, dietitian-nutritionist of the Spanish Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and researcher attached to CIBEROBN of the Carlos III Institute of Health. That is, those added to the food preparation process and that, according to WHO recommendations, must be limited. While it is true that it brings slightly less sweet than table sugar — "83% against 99.9%" – it poses the same health risk: "It can increase the chances of obesity and overweight, hypertension and increase the risk of disease cardiovascular disease," the expert said.

Moreover, science has not been able to demonstrate all the benefits attributed toit. "Eight properties that are often linked to honey have been evaluated from the EFSA European Food Safety Authority – defence support, improved digestive health, antioxidant capacity, etc. determine a causal relationship between honey consumption and those properties," says Moñino. However, unlike month sugar, if it contains certain substances, such as "organic acids, phytochemicals and enzymes that could have some effect yet to be scientifically proven," he adds.

It seems clear, then, that switching from one ingredient to another does not bring greater benefits or reduce health risks. So, if it's done, it says Moñino,"that's because we like its taste more and we think it makes a difference, but not because you think it has more properties." The expert stresses the need to limit his intake to a maximum of two or three spoons rasas rasas (about 20 grams) and without adding any other types of sugars.