Marshmallows are the thing of childhood summers. Whether they’re roasted over an open fire or smooshed into a smore, marshmallows have a fluffy texture that’s hard to find in other snacks.
The problem is that 50g of marshmallows contain 150 calories, most of which are carbohydrate-based. In fact, 50g of marshmallows contains 28g of sugar. Worse yet, the treat has nearly no nutritional value, meaning that these are empty calories (1).
Sure, marshmallows don’t contain any fat, but sugar is eventually stored as fat when you’re over-consuming empty calories.
The problem with this sugary food is that it’s hard to have just one. Over time, overindulging in sweet foods can lead to insulin resistance.
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How Much Sugar Should You Eat in a Day ?
Jamie Oliver, the famous chef-turned-nutritional-activist lists on his website that children over the age of 11 should eat no more that 30 grams of added sugars a day, which is nearly as much as what’s in a handful of marshmallows (2). Keep in mind that his number doesn’t account for the added sugars in fruit juice and other treats children often eat during the summertime.
Not all sugar is bad, in fact, much of your body (your brain especially) needs glucose to survive. Naturally-occurring sugars in fruits and complex carbohydrates are great sources of glucose, plus they contain important micronutrients.
High sugar consumption also leaves you prone to diseases like diabetes, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, hypertension, cavities, food addiction, and obesity. Sugar is also the primary fuel for cancerous cells.
How To Make Healthy Marshmallows
This healthy recipe packs all the flavor without all the sugar. You can even customize the flavor by using organic extracts like orange or strawberry. Feel free to add toasted coconut flakes into your batter or roll the finished product in cocoa powder. It just goes to show that homemade is always better!
Plus, this healthy treat has gelatin, which helps fight joint deterioration. Since gelatin is basically boiled-down cartilage and connective tissue, it can help improve your mobility and ward off arthritis.
- 1 1/2 tbsp. organic gelatin
- 1/2 cup cold water
- 1/2 cup raw organic honey
- 1/8 tsp. fine grain Himalayan salt
- 1/2 tsp. organic vanilla extract
- Lightly grease a small loaf pan with coconut oil. Cover with parchment paper, making sure to cut it so that a bit of paper hangs over the sides, and grease the paper.
- Pour half of the water (1/4 cup) into a large mixing bowl and sprinkle in the gelatin. Set aside.
- In a small saucepan, combine honey, salt, and the remaining water and warm up over medium heat. Use a candy thermometer to verify the temperature, you should take it off the heat when it reached 240 degrees.
- Careful drizzle the hot mixture into the gelatin mixture, using a hand mixer on low to combine.
- Once combined, add vanilla and increase speed to high. Beat for 12-15 minutes or until it begins to look like marshmallow fluff. Scrape the mixture into the greased pan and let it dry, uncovered, for 4-12 hours.
- Cut into squares and serve or store in an air-tight container away from heat and humidity.