Inulin Sweetener: What Is It, and How Do You Use It?

Everyone has heard of natural sweeteners to replace sugar in your diet. There are key players such as honey and stevia, but have you heard of inulin sweeteners? Inulin has been around for centuries and occurs naturally, but has recently become a popular sweetener option for those looking to lower their sugar intake.  

Having too much sugar in your diet can lead to all sorts of problems from inflammation to boating and an unbalanced gut microbiome. Replacing sugar in your diet can help you kick your sweets habit and get you to enjoy less sugary foods in general. 

What is Inulin?

Adding a sweetener like inulin to your diet is a great option because it’s also dietary fiber. This means you’re replacing sugar with a substitute that has many health benefits to it other than just getting rid of the sugar. So, let’s dive into what inulin is and how you can use it as a sweetener.

What is Inulin?

Inulin is a naturally occurring dietary fiber. It was approved by the FDA as a dietary fiber in 2018, so it’s still relatively new as far as mainstream food goes.  It can be found in several fruits and veggies, with the highest concentration found in chicory root. Inulin is a soluble dietary fiber, so it dissolves in water and can aid in digestion problems.  

We all know that fiber is great for your digestive system, and many fruits and veggies give us fiber naturally. Soluble fiber is the kind that dissolves in water, which means it can help slow down digestion, keep you full longer and help balance your blood sugar and cholesterol. 

Inulin is also a fructan. A fructan is a chain of fructose molecules that connects in a way that makes it so the intestine can’t break them down, making it a prebiotic. This means that they are able to travel to the lower gut. When they get there, they become food for the good bacteria living in your gut, otherwise known as probiotics.  

Since prebiotics are unable to be digested by the body, they stay in your gut. While it may sound like a not great thing to have organisms lingering around in your stomach, it is. This is because prebiotics provide probiotics the energy they need to keep your gut healthy. Without them, you’d be dealing with bloating and all sorts of digestive problems. If you’re interested in learning more about prebiotics and probiotics, check out this article 

Inulin is a starchy carbohydrate substance sound in various plants such as:  

  • Wheat
  • Onions
  • Bananas
  • Artichokes
  • Asparagus 

The most common source of inulin is chicory root. Chicory root is a leafy plant that has become popular in the food industry as a sweetener. The plant comes from the dandelion family and is primarily used as a coffee substitute. The root is where you’re going to find the inulin used in sweeteners. You can also eat the leaves of a chicory root. There are many health benefits to incorporating chicory root as an inulin sweetener into your diet.

Health Benefits of Inulin

Improves Digestion

We are all about gut health and improving digestion as much as we can. Inulin is known to regulate the microbiome. Since it’s a soluble fiber, when inulin gets into your gut and meets water, it becomes a gel. This gel slowly works its way through your body and slows down digestion as well as feeds the good bacteria in your gut along the way.

Relieves Constipation

You already know being constipated is no fun. Inulin sweeteners may help with constipation by promoting regularity. Again, since it’s dietary fiber, it will stimulate the bowels and get everything going down there.

May Help With Weightloss

Consuming inulin sweetener may help with weight loss. Not only are you reducing your sugar intake, but you’re increasing your fiber intake. You’ll feel full longer, and inulin may help curb unwanted snacking habits.

Health Benefits of Inulin

Inulin Sweetener May Help With Other Health Concerns

If you’re dealing with gastrointestinal problems or Type 2 diabetes, inulin may be able to help. Inulin can help to repair the gut microbiome and stabilize your blood sugar levels.

Inulin as a Sweetener

If you’re interested in using inulin as a sweetener, there are several ways to do so. Inulin has been used in processed foods because it is so adaptable. Inulin can not only be added as a sugar substitute, but it can help with texture in foods to replace other things as well. When looking for inulin sweetener, it could have different names such as:  

  • Inulin
  • Inulin Powder
  • Chicory Root Fiber
  • Chicory Root Inulin
  • Native Chicory Inulin 

Basically, if you’re looking for inulin, anything with chicory root in it will be good.  
There are so many ways to use inulin sweetener since it comes in a powder form. For example, inulin sweetener can be used as a flour replacement in baked goods without losing any texture elements. Inulin contains 25-35% of the food energy of carbohydrates, as well. So, when you use inulin sweetener you’re getting a lot more than you would with regular old sugar.

Ways to Use Inulin Sweetener

Add it to Your Morning Coffee

Inulin is water-soluble, so it will dissolve in hot drinks without clumping or anything weird happening. You can feel good about adding fiber to your daily cup of coffee or tea.

Ways to Use Inulin Sweetener

Throw it in a Smoothie 

We love smoothies, and you probably do too. Smoothies are a great way to get your supplements in for the day. Throw a scoop of inulin powder into your smoothie to get the day going.

Bake With Inulin

Inulin is a sweetener, so it makes perfect sense that you can use it when you bake! Try replacing sugar or whatever sweetener you’re using when you bake with inulin. This is a fabulous way to break a nasty sugar habit. Yes, inulin may not be a powerful sweetener like sugar, but you’ll get used to it. You will probably enjoy it more when you realize how much better you feel.

Glaze a Ham

If you’re cooking meat, you can use inulin in a glaze instead of real sugar. You will still get plenty of texture, and fiber too! Not a meat-eater? Try glazing carrots with inulin to make a sweet and healthy side dish.

Try it in a Cold Drink

One of the drawbacks to sugar is that it doesn’t dissolve in cold drinks. With inulin, you can add it to your favorite iced beverage with no issues. If you have a hard time remembering to throw it in, try a drink that comes with inulin sweetener. We suggest Half Day Tea Tonics. Drinking tea with prebiotics and fiber already in it will make you feel good about your afternoon ‘pick me up’.

Halfday Tea tonics

 

Put it on Your Fruit

Do you ever sprinkle your fruit with sugar? Try inulin sweetener instead. This is a really easy way to add a healthy punch to your snack.  

Why Should You Replace Sugar with Inulin Sweetener?

It can be hard to say goodbye to sugar and replace it with an inulin sweetener. Trust us, your body will thank you for your sacrifice. If you’re having gut problems, sugar could be the culprit. Sugar is linked to problems such as leaky gut syndrome, and the only way to help resolve the issue is to kick the sugar.

We spend most of our days so busy that we don’t think twice about what we put in our bodies. Doing what we can to reduce the number of processed foods we ingest can do wonders for our gut health and general well-being.

Conclusion

To sum it up, inulin sweetener is a great alternative to sugar and other artificial sweeteners. It’s found naturally in chicory root and other plants. Inulin sweetener is also an excellent source of dietary fiber, so you can feel good about making the switch.  

If you want to start adding inulin sweetener to your diet, try using products that already contain it first. Half Day Tea Tonics is a great place to start on your inulin sweetener journey.

Halfday tea tonics