Honey vs. Agave Syrup

Both are natural sweeteners; agave nectar contains high-fructose corn syrup, while honey, having tends to be sweeter and slightly higher in calories

THE SWEET TRUTH: Agave syrup and honey are both natural sweeteners. Agave is preferred for those following a gluten-free, vegan or low-glycemic diet. All sugar – from table sugar to high-fructose corn syrup or honey – contains some mixture of fructose and glucose: table sugar has a  50/50 ratio and high fructose corn syrup has a  55/45 ration.  Agave nectar is 90 percent fructose. It does contain small amounts of calcium, potassium, and magnesium, but not enough to matter nutritionally. Honey has more calories than sugar but is sweeter tasting and less of it can be used in a recipe. Honey also provides antioxidants and traces of vitamins, such as niacin, riboflavin, thiamin, and B6, which are lacking in white sugar.

Who wins? At the end of the day, a sweetener is a sweetener, and both should be consumed in moderation.

TIP: Try sweetening foods with freshly-squeezed fruit juice!

Julia E. Salomón, MS, RDN, CD; Community Health Improvement Leader, Affinity Health System