The Differences and Nutritional Content of White, Brown and Palm Sugar


Sugar that has a sweet taste is liked by many people. White sugar, brown sugar and palm sugar have different nutrients. This is the nutrition doctor’s explanation.

Sugar can be mixed in drinks, or a complementary flavor to dishes. Interestingly, Indonesians are familiar with many types of sugar including the trending one, palm sugar.

The three most famous and widely used sugars are brown sugar, palm sugar, and granulated sugar or white sugar. These three sugars can be used to sweeten drinks or food. In fact, it is often used as a complement to spices in stir-fries or other vegetables.

So, what’s the difference? Which one is healthier, is it true that palm sugar is healthier?

A nutritionist at the Melinda Mother and Child Hospital, Bandung, Johanes Casay Chandrawinata, said that the most prominent difference between the three types of sugar is the shape. Although brown sugar and palm sugar do look quite similar.

“Of course the shape is different. The taste is similar. But it’s still different, even the aroma is different, the nutritional content is also different,” said Johanes when contacted by some time ago.

These three types of sugar are simple carbohydrates. All three contain sucrose and glucose, with quite different concentrations. So, what about in terms of nutrition?

White sugar, brown sugar and palm sugar, what’s the difference? Photo: Getty Images/PhotographyBasica

The content of molasses which makes brown sugar red or brown is quite high. Molasses, said Johanes, is molasses which is the main source for making brown sugar and white sugar.

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“So in cane sugar, the molasses content is removed. That’s why the color of granulated sugar is white,” said Johanes.

But, in terms of nutrition actually not too different. However, the content of iron and calcium in brown sugar is slightly higher when compared to white sugar.

Among others, white sugar has the least amount of iron and calcium. Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto/Natalia_Grabovskaya

In addition, the calories contained in brown sugar are also much less when compared to white sugar. Johanes said, in four grams of brown sugar, there are 15 calories, while white sugar has 16.3 calories.

“But all the nutrients are the same, so you can’t say that brown sugar is much healthier and can be used in large quantities, but you can’t,” he said.

So, what about palm sugar?

While palm sugar also can not be consumed in excess. Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto/Natalia_Grabovskaya

Johanes said, the calories contained in palm sugar per 100 grams are 377 calories. Arena sugar also has a different raw material, which comes from the sap of the palm tree.

Therefore, this sugar is not suitable for consumption by diabetics.

Palm sugar is often considered as natural sugar. Even though he said, both palm sugar, granulated sugar or white sugar with brown sugar are all the same. These three types of sugar can not be used excessively.

After all, glucose is not only contained in sugar. In white rice, or other foods there is also glucose.

“That’s why, brown sugar or palm sugar because it’s dark in color is considered natural, so it’s widely used. Even though it’s not like that, everything if used in excess can cause diabetes,” he said.

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About the full type of sugar can be read here:

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(Detikfood Team/Detikfood Team)

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