I've heard that agave nectar has a low glycemic index. Is the amber better than the light variety (taste, glycermic index)? Is it safe to use as a sweetener in baby foods (where honey is not)? Can anyone recommend one brand over another
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Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.
Hmmm. That's a very good question. Being out of the infant phase for several years (the son and the daughter are both in college), the idea had never occurred to me. Give your pediatrician a call; he/she can give you good advice.
hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.
It appears to be safe for babies. Do be aware that agave nectar has more fructose in it than high-fructose corn syrup.
I think what hardlikearmour says is important. As per Marion Nestle, from her website "foodpolitics" "As for agave sugar as a substitute: it can have much higher concentrations of fructose than either sucrose or HFCS but its labels do not give percentages so you have no way to know how much. •Fructose: increasing evidence suggests that the metabolism of fructose–which differs from that of glucose–is associated with abnormalities. This means that it is best to reduce intake of fructose from table sugar as well as HFCS.
Kristy is an expert at making things pretty and a former Associate Editor of Food52.
How old is your baby? Are you sure you want to be using sweeteners in baby food? I agree with boulangere's suggestion of talking to your pediatrician before doing anything.
article from the chicago tribune that may be helpful
honey shouldn't be given to children under 1 year because of the risk that it might contain the spores that cause botulism. this article suggests that most naturally derived sweetners, including agave, could contain the spores.
Thanks for all the informative responses. Really enjoyed the foodpolitics website.
I have to agree with KMucci that homemade baby food doesn't need added sweetener. I made all my son's baby food from scratch, using steamed, pureed veggies and fruit only (sometimes added some milk or formula for strong-tasting foods like broccoli. I'm happy to say that I have a 2 year old who will eat any veggie put in front of him, from avocado to bean sprouts to zucchini, and who doesn't have a strong sweet tooth (yet.)