Hey Melissa - Really like the information on your site & would like to learn more. About sugars, I was wondering if you had an opinion on Agave? Hope to hear from you soon!
When you say agave, I assume you are talking about agave syrup (since you mention sugar - as opposed to the plant itself, which is edible).
It is my opinion that agave syrup is not healthy. Although if I had to choose between agave syrup and artificial sweeteners, I would choose the agave.
If I had to choose between agave syrup and unrefined raw sugar, I would choose the sugar.
After all the processing of agave syrup, you are left with an incredibly high percentage of fructose. And, yes, fructose has a minimal impact on blood sugar - but that doesn't outweigh its side effects.
Too much fructose is suspected to cause insulin resistance (making it counter productive for diabetics), weight gain around our middles, and elevated triglycerides and LDL cholestrol.
It also puts a tremendous strain on the liver. Any of our cells can use glucose, but only our liver can break down fructose. It is believed that the liver has to stop everything else that it is doing to metabolize fructose. And those that consume a lot of it have livers that look like they belong to alcoholics. So I do not use it.
Stevia is my choice for those wishing to limit their sugar intake. You just need to be careful not to add too much to whatever you are sweetening. Otherwise you'll get a bitter licorice aftertaste that most people find unappealing.
Wishing you the best of health,