Recently a reader emailed me to ask if I had heard of coconut sap. “Coconut sap” is a brilliant name for what I’ve been calling “coconut sugar.” Why do I prefer that term? Because the term, “sugar”, is associated with white refined sugar, which is very bad for you. White refined sugar contributes to all sorts of problems such as heart disease, hypoglycemia, obesity, and diabetes (just to name a few). White refined sugar also feeds the growth of cancer cells as well as yeast or candida.
So, just what is coconut sugar?
The coconut tree’s stems, which are covered in small flowers, are tapped with hollow bamboo tubes. Once collected, the sap is simmered at low temperatures for about 45 to 90 minutes. And it’s done! The result is a caramel-colored granulated sweetener that can be used just like conventional table sugar. Along with stevia, it’s one of my favorite sugar substitutes. And guess what? Tapping coconut tree sap is very sustainable. Once tapped, the coconut sap flows for the next 20 years. Meanwhile, sugar cane production causes widespread environmental damage (see this report by the World Wildlife Fund).
Coconut sugar nutrition
Where to find coconut sugar
There are several coconut sugar brands, but the typical grocery store probably won’t carry them. Most health food stores will keep it shelved, but I buy mine from iHerb.com (and you’ll save $5 with your first order using code ROZ388).
“Gone coconuts: New sugar or old hype?” from the Michigan State University website
“What is Organic Coconut Sugar” on NaturesBlessings.com
“Coconut Sap ~ Who Knew???” on CoconutSecret.com
Big Tree Farms FAQs on coconut sugar