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BTD Forums  /  Eat Right 4 Your Type  /  Agave Nectar
Posted by: colojd, Thursday, April 19, 2007, 7:20pm
We have just discovered Agave nectar and love it. We are a family of two type B's and one O - we have not yet tested to find out what our secretor status is. I think from reading a few previous posts on agave, most have said that even though it is not on the Typbase list, it is probably a neutral for all.

We plan to start buying it in larger quantities so that we can start using it in baked goods. Would like to hear from others who have substituted it for regular sugar and what type of baked goods it works best in. We avoid all white sugar when we can and had been using the unrefined cane sugar that has the cane juice in it (like the Raw Sugar product) but we would like to move to using agave now as much as possible.

One more question - we are not diabetic or have big problems with blood sugar, but mine was a bit elevated at last checkup 6 months ago. Did any of you who found your blood sugar a little too high find using agave improved your blood sugar readings?
Thanks!
Joyce
Posted by: Lola, Thursday, April 19, 2007, 7:48pm; Reply: 1
Quoted Text
Dr. D
Question: Why no Sucanat for B's???

Answer: Raw cane sugar possesses a B-antigen
degrading enzyme
Much like certain preparations of soy. In
essence, the enzyme digests your blood type.
Not so good for the mucus of your GI tract. It
appears to be in the mineral (or ash) portion
of the food, which is much lower in the other
refined commercial forms. Prolonged boiling
(as in molasses making) inactivates it.

As an avoid it is only a Tier II value
(optional in otherwise healthy individuals),
so don't get too bent out of shape. B non
secretors may want to take this more seriously
though, expecially if obese; and B secretors
if prone to gut permiablility issues.
Posted by: gulfcoastguy, Thursday, April 19, 2007, 8:09pm; Reply: 2
I use agave nectar with ghee, cream cheese, vanilla, and lemon zest for frosting for carrot cake. I believe vegetable glycerine to be better for controlling blood sugar so I use that on the rare occasions I actually bake.
Posted by: Brighid45, Thursday, April 19, 2007, 9:40pm; Reply: 3
I use agave nectar as my primary sweetener and generally in any baking I do (which is infrequent nowadays). Also I like sweetened iced tea once in a great while, and the dark agave nectar is really delicious with fresh lemon juice in rooibos iced tea. I like it better than vegetable glycerine, which to me has a chemical taste that is very offputting. Agave nectar does not spike my blood sugar and a little goes a long way. It's great stuff and has a lovely delicate taste.
Posted by: colojd, Thursday, April 19, 2007, 10:21pm; Reply: 4
Hi and thanks to all for your response.

Lola, I am not sure if what we have is called sucanat, but will check. I do have to say that sometimes the scientific language of the BTD can be very disturbing, such as the reference to the sugar enzyme digesting your blood and causing mucus in your intestines. I have a chemistry degree, but references is kind of strange, even if it is scientifically true.

I don't know my secretor status yet, so I have not gotten into the tier I or tier II concepts.

I have read a little on agave nectar and it did say that you can use half of what a recipe calls for sugar. To us, it has a pleasant, mildly sweet flavor. I am trying to lose some weight so I have lessen the amount of grains I am eating. I have a wonderful yogurt that I get at Wild Oats store that is made in Greece. I get the plain and it has none of the sour flavor that plain yogurts like Dannon have. I add a few walnuts and a sprinkle of agave and that is my breakfast most mornings!
Posted by: Alia Vo, Thursday, April 19, 2007, 10:24pm; Reply: 5
I have used agave in the past with no experiences with sugar spikes or feeling jittery, or tired.

I have also used vegetable glycerine in the past with similar positive effects.


Alia
Posted by: Brighid45, Thursday, April 19, 2007, 10:31pm; Reply: 6
I've found that depending on the recipe or use, I can use anywhere from a third to one-half agave nectar in ratio to the amount of sugar or sweetener called for. It really depends on the other ingredients. If I'm making a carrot cake, I know that the carrots, pineapple and raisins in the batter will add sweetness, and so I back off on the nectar. With cookies I might add a bit more. The dark nectar also has more of a presence (imo anyway). I use it quite a bit and can be more sparing with it just because it tastes a bit stronger and (to me) sweeter.
Posted by: colojd, Thursday, April 19, 2007, 10:40pm; Reply: 7
Thanks Alia and Brighid. That makes sense that you have to kind of experiment with how much you add if other things will add sweetness.

I am looking forward to testing it out!
Posted by: Alia Vo, Thursday, April 19, 2007, 10:44pm; Reply: 8
Have you tried using frozen apple juice or frozen pineapple juice concentrate with no other added ingredients or sugar?  

When I did alot more baking in the past, I used 100% pure fruit concentrates to sweeten my homemade granola.  Using a fruit juice concentrate may also assist in the amount of agave or any other type of sweetener you use.

Both fruit juices are very sweet and ideal for baking.

Alia
Posted by: jayney-O (Guest), Friday, April 20, 2007, 12:30am; Reply: 9
I love agave!! Here's my super salad dressing!
Generous drizzle (over spring greens) of EVOO
less generous sprinkling of apple cider vinegar
light drizzle of AGAVE nectar
pinch of salt.......Toss!  Awesome!!!!     (You gotta get a feel for amounts)
Posted by: Drea, Friday, April 20, 2007, 1:52am; Reply: 10
My fav dressing for kale slaw is evoo, lemon or lime juice, and a drizzle to taste of agave.
Posted by: colojd, Friday, April 20, 2007, 1:01pm; Reply: 11
All of those suggestions sound great. I have not tried fruit juice concentrate but will have to try it out. If the recipe calls for one cup of sugar, how do you translate that into the concentrate, or is it kind of something you try out to get the right taste?

Also love the suggestions for the salad dressing. My husband does a great oil and vinegar dressing with only salt and pepper added. We never have added sugar but I am sure the agave is a nice thing to add to enhance the natural flavors of the greens.

I just read something about agave a couple of days ago. It said that it helps transport fat deposits from the abdomen for example. The more I read about it the more I am glad that we are trying it out.
Posted by: Peppermint Twist, Friday, April 20, 2007, 1:54pm; Reply: 12
I am so thrilled with agave nectar!  I don't use sweeteners much at all, but for those few things that I do want a sweetener for, I had been feeling pretty deprived as an O nonnie because, let's face it, and the following is just my humble opinion, BUT *lol*:

1.  Vegetable glycerine is NOT normal, as in, it is highly processed and WEIRD, taste-wise.

2.  Molasses just doesn't cut it for most of one's sweetening needs *lol*

3.  100% fruit syrups like the Tree of Life line are fantastic for making homemade sodas and other "raw" products, but not sure they can hold up to cooking.

Agave nectar, by contrast, is a very natural, unrefined product, it is sweet, light and delicious, and you can use it raw or in baking/cooking.  I think, if you were a blood type that wanted to attempt pancakes, it would be excellent in place of maple syrup, personally (I was just saying that in another thread long about yesterday).

I am just so thrilled with it because I love anything that takes me as an O non and plops me into the land of the normal, ya know.  Between the agave, the millet-flax bread, and some other recent discoveries, I'm feeling pretty near indistinguishable these days from say, your Type B secretor *lol*.

Loving it!  Agave rules.

edited to add:  P.S.  the reason you are thinking you read somewhere that it is okay for all types even though it isn't rated in Typebase yet is because it is the sweetener that Dr. D. himself okayed for use in the NAP Unibars (protein/meal replacement bars) for all types.  This is what the NAP Unibar description* says about agave nectar:

"UniBars are made from the purest, non-genetically modified natural food ingredients. Sweetened By Nature with Organic Agave Nectar. More slowly metabolized, with fewer calories and with a natural sweet taste, Agave Nectar is nature's perfect answer to great taste without processed sweeteners, refined sugar or other less healthful, less nutritious ingredients."

* link:  http://www.4yourtype.com/prodinfo.asp?number=NP050
Posted by: Brighid45, Friday, April 20, 2007, 2:09pm; Reply: 13
Jayney--you know, I bet you could add fresh or even frozen thawed raspberries to your salad dressing and have a compliant version of raspberry vinaigrette that would not only be good for you, but taste so much better than the bottled supermarket version! I HAVE to try that on spinach salad with some chopped hardboiled eggs and thinly sliced onion. Oh goodie! Another recipe to experiment with! Thanks for sharing :)

Alia, I've used pineapple and apple juice in baking and both were excellent. The pineapple in particular makes for really nice muffins or quickbreads--it adds just enough sweetness without being overwhelming.

Twinnie, I agree-agave nectar rules! I bet it would taste good on pancakes. I'm not all that fond of molasses because most of the stuff you get in the store is refined and diluted, and if you do happen to get some good blackstrap, it costs an arm and a leg. And not everyone likes that strong mineral flavor blackstrap has. So agave nectar wins out on several fronts: low glycemic index, nice taste, works well in various types of recipes, and available in most HFS or natural foods stores. Now if I could just buy it by the gallon . . . :)
Posted by: Rodney, Friday, April 20, 2007, 2:14pm; Reply: 14
peanut butter and Agave on toast (sprouted of course) MUMM can't be beat.
for a quick boost a spoon of peanut butter and squirt some agave on top..
on my oatmeal in the AM with a splash of soy milk! another mummmm with a handful of blue berries more mumm :)
I would think the options would be limitless!!

http://www.volcanicnectar.com/agaverecipes.html

enjoy.
Posted by: colojd, Friday, April 20, 2007, 7:49pm; Reply: 15
Just read this and it was very disturbing:
http://www.living-foods.com/articles/agave.html

Hoping someone with good knowledge of this can comment on it. It makes agave nectar sound as bad as refined sugar.
Posted by: Lisalea, Friday, April 20, 2007, 8:51pm; Reply: 16
Quoted from Edna
2.  Molasses just doesn't cut it for most of one's sweetening needs *lol*


Have u ever tasted fancy molasses Peppermint Twist ??
It's a light colored, "sweet" product,  good as a topping on bread, biscuits ... etc ... u can also use it when baking ...  it's NOTHING like the blackstrap molasses which has a slightly bitter, robust flavor  :P
Cheers  ;D
Posted by: 353 (Guest), Friday, April 20, 2007, 9:07pm; Reply: 17

This is the D. D mail about Agave :

Update: Blood Sugar and Health

Agave Nectar: A Sweet Choice R4YT?

Agave nectar is a natural juice extracted from agave, and is considered Neutral for all blood types, including non-secretors. Honey, by contrast, is considered neutral for all types, but is an Avoid for non-secretors of types O and AB. (Learn more about secretor status at 4yourtype.com.)

-- Agave nectar is 42 percent sweeter than white sugar, and carries a low glycemic index average of 11, meaning it’s absorbed slowly. Honey, by comparison, carries a glycemic index of 83 out of 100, while common white table sugar carries the highest ability of the three to be absorbed quickly and turned to blood glucose.

-- Agave can be substituted in equal parts for honey in most recipes. As a substitute for sugar, use 3/4 cup agave nectar for 1 cup of sugar, and reduce the liquid content by 1/4 cup.

-- Dr. D’Adamo used organic agave nectar in his new UniBar snack bars because this form of sugar is metabolized more slowly and is less likely to cause dramatic fluctuations in blood sugar. When you combine this slow-uptake sugar with the higher protein content of Dr. D’Adamo’s UniBar, this is one healthy—and balanced—snack bar.
Posted by: 353 (Guest), Friday, April 20, 2007, 9:17pm; Reply: 18

For Brighid45 :

hello, I'm Daniela, and would ask your carrot cake recipe, with pineapple and raisins.....it sounds delicious !!!

Many thanks !
Posted by: Lisalea, Saturday, April 21, 2007, 2:14am; Reply: 19
Quoted from colojd
Just read this and it was very disturbing:
http://www.living-foods.com/articles/agave.html

Hoping someone with good knowledge of this can comment on it. It makes agave nectar sound as bad as refined sugar.


:o
VERY disappointing ...  >:( :'( :X ::) :-/
I beleive that this is something that Dr. D'Adamo might have further knowledge about and may comment on perhaps  ??)
Posted by: TypeOSecretor, Saturday, April 21, 2007, 5:11am; Reply: 20
I purchased several gallons of agave syrup from this site:
http://www.blueagavenectar.com/

Colojd, you may be interested in the comparisons they make about themselves with other agave suppliers.

I don't use it that much, but it's always good to be cautious, I think.
Posted by: colojd, Saturday, April 21, 2007, 1:24pm; Reply: 21
I am hoping that Dr. D will post his comments regarding what this person states about Agave being processed. We really would like to use it as our preferred sweetener.

We bought ours here in a local regular grocery store. The bottle shows it came from a company here in Colorado. So I might try to contact them to see how it is made. I don't think that it contains high fructose corn syrup, but that should be a major concern for anyone purchasing it. Since high fructose corn syrup is so destructive to consume, it would be very disappointing to know that some of us are buying agave thinking we are making a more healthy choice, only to be going more backward when it comes to sweeteners.

I will try to email that company here that we bought this from to see if they know more.
Joyce
Posted by: Lola, Saturday, April 21, 2007, 3:53pm; Reply: 22
Joyce,
like all things we buy, we need to make sure what the product contains before purchasing it.
btd has taught us to make the right choices, reading the labels etc.
Posted by: Brighid45, Saturday, April 21, 2007, 4:10pm; Reply: 23
Hi Daniela, nice to meet you :)

If you go here:

http://www.dadamo.com/bloggers/hind/archives/00000021.htm

this will take you to my blog entry with the carrot cake recipe. The second recipe is the one that is BTD-friendly. I know GulfCoastGuy has made this cake and he likes it better with white rice flour, so you might want to experiment and see what works best for you. Have fun and let me know how the cake turns out! :)

I bookmarked the Blue Agave site. They appear to be claiming (without coming right out and saying it, which is litigation territory) that other companies are cutting their agave nectar with cheap sweeteners made from corn. Evidence of things like maltodextrose and so on would seem to support that claim. *sigh* It wouldn't surprise me in the least, but it is disappointing if true.

I've been buying our agave nectar from the local HFS. I'll have to buy some Blue Agave from the site and see if there's a difference. Thanks for the headsup TOS. It does pay to be cautious!
Posted by: TypeOSecretor, Saturday, April 21, 2007, 6:35pm; Reply: 24
For me the mystery gets deeper.  Last night after I read this post, I said I'm going to eat a teaspoon of agave and see how I feel.  Almost immediately, my eyes turned bright red and I started sneezing.  I don't recall this happening to me before.   My eyes are often red.

I have been doing an extensive cleanse so maybe it's reacting with something else - I'm doing some protocols.  I have to go out right now.  I forgot all about it until I read this thread again.  When I get home, I'll check again on an empty stomach - I just ate a very late breakfast.

Posted by: 353 (Guest), Saturday, April 21, 2007, 8:14pm; Reply: 25

Gnammm, seems to ba a slup recipe,  thank you Brighit, I'll made next week end with rice flour, never done a cake with, ....
I have already baked another cake for tomorrow : la Pastiera !!! but it's awfully full of avoids !

Ciao !

Posted by: colojd, Saturday, April 21, 2007, 8:42pm; Reply: 26
Yes I am concerned too. The last thing I want to do is use something I think is good for me only to have hidden bad stuff!

We went to Wild Oats store this morning. My husband was about to get some agave from a bulk liquid dispenser when I told him about what I had read. He said that the label on the container said it was "a product of Mexico" but had a local distribution address.

I think the research on agave is correct - that it is low in GI and is OK for diabetics. Real agave is also supposed to help move the fat from the abdominals into the intestines so it can be moved away quicker, one reason why I went with it, because I have some belly fat to move.  But can you imagine what it would do to people who are diabetic and get the agave that is cut with corn syrup? I think this is alarming and we need some answers. I did write Whole Foods to see what they can tell me. If some of the agave is being cut before coming to the US, the companies here distributing it would be neglegent if they didn't test their product to be sure it was pure agave.  It is being talked about more in the media as a good sugar alternative so something needs to be checked very fast before we have another situation like the one with trans fats - where people were told to eat "low fat" foods that contained trans fats only to find out now that it made people's health worse.
Posted by: TypeOSecretor, Saturday, April 21, 2007, 10:11pm; Reply: 27
I am not up to testing any more agave for awhile.  I had some on my oatmeal about 3 weeks ago with no problems.   About 3 weeks before that, I made some marshmallow pudding with whipped gelatin.  I used agave to sweeten that with no problems I was aware of.  I think I'll wait awhile before trying again.

Off topic:  I'm making a clone recipe of T.G.I. Friday's Dragonfire Chicken for dinner tonight.  I'm using apple cider vinegar instead of rice vinegar.  I'm also using a miniscule amount of jalapeno as compared to the recipe, and wheat free tamari instead of soy sauce.  I'm also using fresh pineapple instead of canned in the Pineapple Pico de Gallo.  I am also not using any mandarin oranges.   I'll probably use red pepper flakes instead of red chili.  The recipe is posted at topsecretrecipes.com  and is free through tonight only.

Posted by: colojd, Sunday, April 22, 2007, 1:12am; Reply: 28
Lola, just wanted to comment that we always read the labels. I think the problem here is that if the person on the raw foods site is correct, agave coming from other countries can be cut with the high fructose corn syrup and maybe not revealed on their labels. There was a bulk foods container at Wild Oats (soon to be purchased by Whole Foods) that had the same brand label as the one that we had purchased a week ago. It said "product of Mexico" but didn't break down any information as to the contents. It did say it was distributed by a company here in Colorado but now I wonder if they are merely the ones who take the bulk product and package it into bottles and not the ones who gather and prepare the product. I am going to try to call them on Monday to get more information and will post what I find here.

I was very excited to find that agave is such a good product but very discouraged when I came across the information about corn syrup the other day. I found that site when doing an internet search because we wanted to buy larger quantities of agave online.
Posted by: Lola, Sunday, April 22, 2007, 3:58pm; Reply: 29
I agree with you.
let us know what this company tells you, on behalf of adding fructose corn syrup from its source.

I wouldn t be one bit surprised, for Mexicans add HFCS to anything they can get their hands on!! lol

the question here is how on earth do they get away with it, without stating it during the export transaction.

baked sweet potato is sold here on the street, and people love to drizzle carnation and corn syrup on them!!!! how crazy is that???!!
frustrating to say the least!
Posted by: colojd, Sunday, April 22, 2007, 7:22pm; Reply: 30
I guess the reason I made the reference to Mexico is that the label said that, and probably most of the agave currently is from there.

Lola you mentioned corn syrup and carnation. Does that mean they use evaportated milk or condensed milk on the potatoes? that certainly would add a lot to the sugar content. If I am understanding correctly, corn syrup comes directly from the corn plant and high fructose corn syrup is more of a synthetic process. I did read last year that it is very hard for humans to digest and can't even be processed by the upper GI tract. So that would explain why it has had such a bad effect on all of us.

To think that so much of our food had this in it, along with trans fats. It is no wonder so many people are walking around with major health issues. Very sad.

I will certainly let all of you know what I find. It could very well be that the companies here that are distributing it do not even know that it is being cut. Probably not many have labs that would test the products for purity or content. I did see in an earlier post here that the nutrition bars sold on this site have agave so hope that someone is checking this out!
Posted by: Lola, Sunday, April 22, 2007, 8:41pm; Reply: 31
it sure is a lot of sugar!!

yeah, mexicans like it sweet!! lol
Posted by: Mary M., Tuesday, April 24, 2007, 5:09pm; Reply: 32
Hi Everyone.

Thank you, Rodney, for pointing out that the brand of agave that is 100% agave is
"Volcanic Nectar". I had been buying and eating the Madhava and and Wholesome Foods agave.
What a bummer to find that they are cut with other sugar syrups. Live and learn. So I was all prepared to buy the Volcanic Agave with their free shipping offer but their website wasn't working properly to do that last night.  In the meantime I read........

Thank you, Colojd, for the website that speaks to the processing of all agave and that it is mostly fructose and that in concentrated quantities destroys your liver! More knowledge.... more grief.  The Volcanic Agave website states that this "...complex form of fructose called inulin or fructosan..." is good for you.  Who and what to believe. Oh, my.

Any thoughts on this out there. Appreciate any imput on this issue.

As an 0-nonnie there is little left for me to use to sweeten anything.
Oh, but there is: Molasses.  But not the 3rd boiling of the sugar cane...no..toooo bitter...the 1st boiling..maybe try that.  Has anyone tried that one?

Can you tell who has a sweet tooth?

Cordially,
Margaret
Posted by: colojd, Tuesday, April 24, 2007, 5:14pm; Reply: 33
Hi Margaret:
I have not yet heard back regarding the Madhava nectar. This was the brand we had purchased so I am very anxious to know more. Yes, it is disappointing because the last thing most of us do who come to the BTD is to go backwards in our nutrition.

It is entirely possible that some of the distributors here in the US don't even know the content, just assume it is pure and just bottle and send it along the way.

I don't know much about the volcanic agave, so not sure if it is the better form or not.

We all certainly need to have the pure form of agave available to us. I will let you know if and when I get a response.
Posted by: Mary M., Tuesday, April 24, 2007, 5:25pm; Reply: 34
Hi Colojd,

Thank you for your timely reply. If anything of interest in the Agave field shows up on this end I'll post it too.

Cordially,
Margaret
Posted by: colojd, Wednesday, April 25, 2007, 11:13pm; Reply: 35
Hi everyone:

Here is the reply I got from Craig, at the customer service center for Madhavahoney.com. They now sell agave and this is the brand that we recently purchased:

"Hello,
Thank you for your inquiry, I appreciate your interest our agave nectar. I can assure you our organic agave nectar products are 100% pure, from agave with no additives of any kind. The organic review process and Quality Cert of Analysis, which are provided with each batch, ensure the purity of our agave.
I hope you enjoy it  and please let me know if I can be of service.
Best regards,
Craig Gerbore" (www.agavehoney.com)

I hope that this is accurate. Sure wish someone with connections to a food chemist could test out a couple of brands for us.

Until then, I plan to continue to use their product, sparingly, and trust that it is the pure form. I have not heard from Whole Foods Market yet, though.
Joyce
Posted by: Lola, Wednesday, April 25, 2007, 11:23pm; Reply: 36
thanks for the info!
Posted by: veggiegirl, Wednesday, April 25, 2007, 11:48pm; Reply: 37
Quoted from colojd
Hi everyone:

Here is the reply I got from Craig, at the customer service center for Madhavahoney.com. They now sell agave and this is the brand that we recently purchased:

"Hello,
Thank you for your inquiry, I appreciate your interest our agave nectar. I can assure you our organic agave nectar products are 100% pure, from agave with no additives of any kind. The organic review process and Quality Cert of Analysis, which are provided with each batch, ensure the purity of our agave.
I hope you enjoy it  and please let me know if I can be of service.
Best regards,
Craig Gerbore" (www.agavehoney.com)

I hope that this is accurate. Sure wish someone with connections to a food chemist could test out a couple of brands for us.

Until then, I plan to continue to use their product, sparingly, and trust that it is the pure form. I have not heard from Whole Foods Market yet, though.
Joyce



I feel a little better ... I also use Madhava brand!!  I was beginning to panic until I got to this post!  :-/
Posted by: colojd, Thursday, April 26, 2007, 3:52am; Reply: 38
I didn't want to make anyone panic, for sure, but right after I started this thread, then I read about some brands possibly being "cut" with the high fructose corn syrup. Then I began to get worried, too! It could be that this person made these statements without evidence or for some other negative reason. So I felt the least that I could do was to check with the brand we bought last to get their comments.

I felt better after I read his comments because we were planning to start substituting it as our preferred sweetener and plan to use it wisely.
Posted by: colojd, Thursday, April 26, 2007, 3:54am; Reply: 39
In first paragraph - I meant the person who made the statement about the agave being cut, and not the person from Madhava commenting about their product. Wanted to clarify that a bit!
Posted by: Ronagon (Guest), Thursday, April 26, 2007, 7:23am; Reply: 40
I prefer agave, too.  The vegetable glycerine and the molasses have a funny taste that I don't much care for.
Posted by: colojd, Thursday, April 26, 2007, 12:52pm; Reply: 41
I don't mind molasses, but it is a strong, heavy flavor and I just don't use it that often. I do use it when I make gingerbread cookies at Christmas but not much at other times.
Posted by: Lisalea, Thursday, April 26, 2007, 3:09pm; Reply: 42
Quoted from colojd
I don't mind molasses, but it is a strong, heavy flavor and I just don't use it that often. I do use it when I make gingerbread cookies at Christmas but not much at other times.


Perhaps u can try to add molasses to a bowl of cooked oatmeal, apple and dried raisins; it really gives it pizzaz  ;) ;D
Posted by: italybound, Thursday, April 26, 2007, 3:33pm; Reply: 43
I LOVE molasses, tho I don't use it much because of my hypoglycemia.  I do know when using it to bake, you really have to back off w/ it or it will just totally overpower everything else.  ;)
Posted by: Peppermint Twist, Thursday, April 26, 2007, 4:55pm; Reply: 44
Quoted from Margaret
Thank you, Rodney, for pointing out that the brand of agave that is 100% agave is "Volcanic Nectar". I had been buying and eating the Madhava and and Wholesome Foods agave.  What a bummer to find that they are cut with other sugar syrups.

Are you going by what was said in this thread or are you reading the ingredients labels of the Madhava and the Wholesome Foods agave?  If the label says it is 100% agave nectar, then it does not contain corn syrup.  FYI, the brand of agave nectar that I buy is 100% pure, organic agave nectar.  It is called Sweet Cactus Farms and is certified organic.  The ingredients are listed as "Ingredients:  Organic agave nectar".  Their website is http://www.sweetcactusfarms.com.



Posted by: italybound, Thursday, April 26, 2007, 5:28pm; Reply: 45
I have Madhava too..........bottle says it's 100% agave nectar.
I too would be surprised if WF knowingly carried agave cut w/ HFCS.
Posted by: Mary M., Thursday, April 26, 2007, 7:58pm; Reply: 46
Hello,

Thank you Peppermint Twist for the heads-up. Yes, I did check labels and yes, they do say 100% Agave Necter.

Then I checked out the Volcanic Necter website and in that website they said that they were the ONLY one of the three agave nectar producers that sell agave nectar that is not cut with other sugars. They also claim that they are the only agave producer who has recently been given the U.S. Glycemic Research Institute Seal gauranteeing it is Low Glycemic.
Valcanic Nectar has a glycemic Index of 27.

If you google "Volcanic Nectar" you will get their website and FAQ and a lot of info. It looks like they bottle their agave under the name "Blue Agave Nectar" also.

What do you think?

Cordially,
Margaret
Posted by: italybound, Thursday, April 26, 2007, 9:05pm; Reply: 47
I just emailed Madhava re: this issue. If it turns out it IS cut, I'm going to give them a big piece of my mind, tho I really should keep it all for ME.  ;D
I'm trying to call but all I get is a busy signal.  :-/
Posted by: colojd, Thursday, April 26, 2007, 9:26pm; Reply: 48
Italybound, please do let us know what you hear. Now I am very concerned. There seems to be conflicting information.

Since the nutrition bars sold through this site have agave, can someone please in this department have a lab check on some of the brands for us, please? Now it seems lots of conflicting information. I am worried some people who have blood sugar management issues might be using a product that has HFCS in it and that would be very bad for their health.

Hope anyone who hears something will please post here and let us know. I agree that Whole Foods would not knowingly sell agave that is cut, but I have not heard from them so possibly they are checking it out.
Posted by: Lola, Thursday, April 26, 2007, 9:31pm; Reply: 49
as all products available, we need to check the ingredients and or ask the manufacturer directly.

the agave nectar used by NAP is certainly not cut!
Posted by: Mary M., Thursday, April 26, 2007, 11:05pm; Reply: 50
Hello,

Italybound, if you reach someone at Madhava, maybe you could find out what the glycemic rating is for their agave. They might even be able to provide you with a copy of the chemical analysis of their product which could be telling.

Calorically speaking Madhava states on their label that 1 Tab. is 60 calories.
The other product I have in my cupboard is called "Sweet Cactus Agave" which states it is 15 calories perTeaspoon which equals 45 calories per Tablespoon.  Why the difference I wonder?

My bet is that Dr. D.  knows his oats regarding the agave that NAP uses in their bars. He's too aware of the dangers of corn syrup, etc. not to.

Think I'll check the web for any info on Madhava, etc.
Anybody check out the Volcanic Nectar website?

Cordially,
Margaret
Posted by: italybound, Friday, April 27, 2007, 1:47am; Reply: 51
The prompt reply from Madhava:
Hello Pat,
Thanks for your inquiry, I appreciate that you took the time to email. To answer you question, our agave nectar is 100% pure from the agave plant  with no additives whatsoever.
I am familiar with Volcanic Nectar's assertion, and all I can say is that they are incorrect. It amounts to a lie, as they certainly know the truth, but disregard it while continuing on with unsubstantiated negative self promotion.
Our agave nectar is organically certified. Part of the review process to maintain certification involves balancing organic product input  compared to sales of organic product. As this is closely monitored, there would be no way to hide additives. And, an analysis is done and provided for each batch produced. So, the quality and  purity of our agave nectar is guaranteed.
And, Madhava's 35 year reputation stands behind that guarantee.
So, I hope that answers your question, and please let me know if I can
be of further  service.

Best regards,
Craig Gerbore
Posted by: Lola, Friday, April 27, 2007, 1:52am; Reply: 52
great, thanks!
Posted by: colojd, Friday, April 27, 2007, 12:56pm; Reply: 53
Pat, thanks for your followup on this.  I think Madhava had produced mostly honey products and the agave is a new thing to their line. But I am hoping as we all are, that their product truly is pure as they say. I will continue to use it.

It is too bad that some other companies are making statements that might not be true. You wonder why they would go to those lengths, unless it is very competitive and they feel that this is a way to get customers to their product, instead of people choosing it for its quality and purity.

It would be very interesting if a food chemist could look into each brand and do an independent test.
Posted by: Peppermint Twist, Friday, April 27, 2007, 1:44pm; Reply: 54
Italybound, thank you for taking the time to contact that one agave nectar company and confirming what I already felt sure of and was about to say today after reading through the new additions to this thread since last I posted:  if a label just lists one ingredient, namely agave nectar, and especially if the product is also certified organic and just lists the one ingredient, there is no way that it also contains corn syrup.  That would be illegal.  You must list your ingredients on the label.  That said, as I understand it, there are exceptions if certain ingredients are less than a certain amount, or if fat content is less than a certain amount, they can still say "non-fat", or whatever, and I take issue with both of those things.  Yet if a product just lists one ingredient, it is pretty safe to believe it only contains that one ingredient, and if the product just lists one ingredient AND says "certified organic", it DEFINITELY only contains that one ingredient.

I think it is really outrageous that the company Volcanic Nectar is, as was said to you by the guy from Madhava, lying.  I mean, there is no other way to characterize it.  It is amazing that Volcanic can get away with that.  I am going to look at their site after I post this, to see how it is worded.  If they say that they are the ONLY source for pure agave nectar and that everyone else cuts theirs with corn syrup?  Well, that sounds like grounds for a lawsuit on the part of these other agave nectar companies about which the misstatement is being made, imho.
Posted by: Drea, Friday, April 27, 2007, 3:09pm; Reply: 55
http://www.volcanicnectar.com/blueagavefaq.html...

"So how can you tell what you are getting or what is in your agave? Science. Ask the Agave company for the Chemical Analysis for their Agave. Some companies won't share this information claiming it is proprietary information but it is required by The U.S. Nutritional Labeling and Education Act (NLEA). The easiest way to find out if the agave in question has been altered is to check the Sugars on the test. If the product has anything more than Fructose and Glucose something has been added. Another key indicator is an extremely high fructose level. Does High Fructose Corn Syrup sound about right? Some of you are asking about a cheap brand called Madhava."

There's a link that will take you to a discussion page on Amazon.com and there are some interesting things being said about Madhava...
Posted by: Peppermint Twist, Friday, April 27, 2007, 3:15pm; Reply: 56
Again, all I know for sure is this:  if a product lists only one ingredient--agave nectar--and especially if that product is certified organic, there is no way that the product contains anything other than agave nectar!  Not unless they are breaking the law, and I don't think they are.  For example, on the Sweet Cactus Farms site, they clearly state that their agave nectar is 100%, certified organic agave nectar.  I have no doubt whatsoever that it is.  Anyone who knows me on this site for any length of time knows that I'm not the most trusting sort in the world, I am highly skeptical and cynical, actually.  But, I'm sorry, if the label says it contains one ingredient and the product is certified organic, then I have no doubt about it.  I think that the Volcanic Nectar company is either in, or getting dangerously close to, litigation territory with its claims about being the ONLY company that sells uncut agave nectar.
Posted by: Drea, Friday, April 27, 2007, 3:20pm; Reply: 57
I agree with you PT; I just think it's interesting how in the name of "marketing" the lengths people will go to make their point. Not that their point is true, mind you. It's marketing. This sort of reminds me of candidates running for office...but I digress.
Posted by: italybound, Friday, April 27, 2007, 3:23pm; Reply: 58
I did write the guy at Madhava back about the claims and wasn't there something they could do, unless it is that V/N isn't naming names. I think that's precisely what it is. Will wait for his response.  ;)
Posted by: Peppermint Twist, Friday, April 27, 2007, 3:24pm; Reply: 59
P.S.  From the Sweet Cactus Farms agave site and, maybe it is just me, but I don't know how much more crystal clear and unambiguous they could make their statements and I totally believe them:

"Certified Organic Agave Nectar, 100% Blue Weber Tequilana"

http://www.sweetcactusfarms.com/

As the letter Pat got from Madhava says, for a product to be certified organic, it goes through a very, very strict inspection process and very basic to that would be that the product only contains what it is labeled to contain.

I'm sorry, but I think this whole "issue" is a marketing tactic by one company, Volcanic Nectar.  While they may be accurate in stating that some agave nectars are cut by corn syrup (I don't doubt that at all), it is untrue to state that they ALL are!  I'm just sure that the ones that are certified organic, 100% agave nectar, are just that--100% agave nectar!

...*Whew*...I have to lie down *lol*.

This is taking it outta me.

I just can't stand sleezy companies, that's what it boils down to.  They are confusing consumers and very intelligent, discerning ones at that.  THAT bothers me.  I may even write to Sweet Cactus Farms to alert them to these claims.  Maybe if enough folks like Pat and I write to the decent companies producing a pure agave nectar product, they will up and sue this Volcanic Nectar outfit for messing with people's heads.
Posted by: Drea, Friday, April 27, 2007, 3:32pm; Reply: 60
Not only that, PT, but the link on the Volcanic Nectar's site that I linked in my post above is misleading because it's titled "Click here to read about an investigation into their [Madhava] product." It's not an official investigation, it's just some people on amazon talking about agave...
Posted by: Peppermint Twist, Friday, April 27, 2007, 3:56pm; Reply: 61
Quoted from outdoordrea
Not only that, PT, but the link on the Volcanic Nectar's site that I linked in my post above is misleading because it's titled "Click here to read about an investigation into their [Madhava] product." It's not an official investigation, it's just some people on amazon talking about agave...

Oh, exactamundo, I noticed that.  I am really infuriated about this sitch, actually, and, following Pat's lead, I just wrote to my fave agave nectar company about it.  I really think all the GOOD, above-board companies need to be alerted to what Volcanic Nectar is claiming:

"to   agave@sweetcactusfarms.com  
date  Apr 27, 2007 11:49 AM  
subject  FYI from a happy customer, there is another company making false claims...  
mailed-by  gmail.com  

Hello!  I love your certified organic, dark agave nectar.  I follow a certain diet and there is currently a discussion on the internet forum for same regarding agave nectar, and it has come to my attention that a company called "Volcanic Nectar" is making claims on their site that they are the ONLY company that does not add corn syrup to their agave nectar.  I think that is outrageous because if a product is certified organic and only lists one ingredient on their label, then that is all that is in there!  Another person in the discussion uses a brand called "Madhava" and she wrote to them about this.  They wrote back and said that their product is pure and that they are aware of the false claims made by this "Volcanic Nectar" company.  I just wanted to write to you about it, because I appreciate and love your dark agave nectar a lot and what I appreciate is that it is certified organic and it is so pure.  It just makes me mad that another company is going around saying that theirs is the ONLY agave nectar that is 100% agave nectar, and I thought you should be aware of them making that claim.

I went to their site and among other things, they state:

"It's the only Blue Agave Nectar sold in the United States that doesn't contain any unnatural fillers. "

I believe that is a false claim, so I thought I would make you aware of it, if you aren't already.  I mean, I'm not the most trusting consumer in the world, in fact, I'm a very cynical, discerning one.  But I know that if a product says "USDA certified organic" and it only lists one ingredient, then that is the only ingredient in there.  Anyway, just wanted to alert you to this.  Keep up the great work making your wonderful agave nectar.  I certainly intend to keep buying it.  And myself and another person have set everyone straight on the diet site I mentioned regarding the claims made by the other company.


--
Shalom,

Edna W. "

btw, now that I re-read it, I hope it doesn't sound bad saying I "set everyone straight" here at Chez Us Guys!  I just meant that I set the record straight for anyone reading this thread, not that anyone already in the thread doesn't "get it" or something--cool?

One thing I'm wondering:  Maybe Volcanic can get away with their statements because they say they are the only company selling pure BLUE agave nectar.  Maybe the kind we're buying isn't "blue"?  Although I doubt that because the Sweet Cactus Farms says "100% BLUE Weber Tequilana".  But maybe "Blue Weber Tequilana" and "Blue" are two different varieties?  I just keep thinking there must be some loophole like that because otherwise this Volcanic outfit would be being sued out the yin-yang, no?

Posted by: italybound, Friday, April 27, 2007, 4:25pm; Reply: 62
Quoted from Edna
aybe Volcanic can get away with their statements because they say they are the only company selling pure BLUE agave nectar.  Maybe the kind we're buying isn't "blue"?  Although I doubt that because the Sweet Cactus Farms says "100% BLUE Weber Tequilana".  But maybe "Blue Weber Tequilana" and "Blue" are two different varieties?


It could be that it's because it's a 'blue' variety, but as I said earlier, if they are not naming names (and from what I'm seeing here, they're not), there is not really anything the other companies can do,  I dont think. I think for Madhava or anyone else to sue, V/N  would have to specifically name the the other companies to be sued for liable or slander. Just my thoughts.
Posted by: colojd, Friday, April 27, 2007, 6:59pm; Reply: 63
It is amazing to me, after starting this discussion, that there would be so much controversy. The comments about agave from Mexico often being cut were found on a "raw foods" site that I can across when browsing the internet to find other sources of agave nectar.

I think that any company that would knowingly decieve a consumer is guilty of fraud. The damage that eating something with HFCS could do to someone who has health issues, not to mention those who have good health and want to preserve it, is a big concern.

We will continue to use the Madhava agave in our household but I think for all of us, we should keep a close watch for any information about agave nectar that needs to be passed on, both the positive and the negative. That is the best way we can be informed consumers. Take care everyone.
Joyce
Posted by: Peppermint Twist, Friday, April 27, 2007, 7:10pm; Reply: 64
Quoted from pkarmeier


It could be that it's because it's a 'blue' variety, but as I said earlier, if they are not naming names (and from what I'm seeing here, they're not), there is not really anything the other companies can do,  I dont think. I think for Madhava or anyone else to sue, V/N  would have to specifically name the the other companies to be sued for liable or slander. Just my thoughts.

Even if they are making the sweeping claim that they are the ONLY company in the US selling 100% pure agave nectar when that is not the case?  I would think that they could be legally forced to stop making that claim.  Truth in advertising and all.



Posted by: italybound, Friday, April 27, 2007, 9:26pm; Reply: 65
Quoted from Edna
Even if they are making the sweeping claim that they are the ONLY company in the US selling 100% pure agave nectar when that is not the case?  I would think that they could be legally forced to stop making that claim.  Truth in advertising and all.


Don't get me wrong............I totally agree with you.............they should be stopped if it's not true............however, they must have found the loophole   :-/

Adding, I just heard back from Madhava and it's just as I suspected...........a generalized statement w/ no specific names mentioned, lets VN 'get away' w/ what they say. Here is the response:
Hello Pat,
Well, thanks for passing along our information, I really appreciate it. Volcanic's claims are, I think, libelous, although generalized statements like that help them slip by  (my italics) . But, most consumers are intellgent enough to be inquisitive and I think in the long run Volcanic will suffer from a lack of credibility as they do not and cannot substantiate their wild claims.
And, while Volcanic states theirs is organic, they do not have an actual organic certification so this is another example of a false claim. I personally don't feel anyone can be successful with tactics such as these and that they will come back to haunt them in the future.
Best regards,
Craig
Posted by: colojd, Tuesday, May 1, 2007, 1:34pm; Reply: 66
Here is the response from Whole Foods. Not sure why she found the article "confusing". I told her that I had read an article from this site that said that all Mexican agave was cut with high fructose corn syrup. I wrote back to her and asked her if she could at least please notify us that these products had been tested and verified pure.

Anyway, here is her response:
Dear Joyce,



I am writing in response to the product question comment you wrote and sent to our Whole Foods Market Website.  Interesting question and I must say I may need to do a lot more research to properly answer your concerns.  What I can give you at this time are the brand names and contact information for the brands of agave nectars we carry.  In reading the article you attached I am confused by your question about high fructose corn syrup.  What I gathered from the article is that the make up of agave nectar is similar to but not actual high fructose corn syrup.  I am more than happy to do further research for you though it mya take me some time.  The list below contains the information I currently have on the products we carry:



Living Tree Community Foods

Raw organic agave nectar

P.O. Box 10082

Berkley, CA 94709

1-800-260-5534

info@livingtreecommunity.com

http://www.livingtreecommunity.com

(On the package it says that most raw agave nectars are cooked at 149-180 degrees but theirs is simply warmed by the sun)



Wholesome Sweeteners

Organic Raw Blue Agave Nectar & organic Blue Agave

Sugar Land, TX 77478

7-800-680-1896

(They say their raw is produced at a low temperature less than 118 degrees)





Madhava Honey

Raw Organic Agave Nectar, Light agave nectar, amber agave nectar

Box 756

Lyons, CO 80540

agave@madhavahoney.com



If you have any further questions please feel free to contact me directly.  My information is below.

Thank you for shopping with us!

Sincerely,

Sara Bradley

Grocery Team Leader

Whole Foods Market Tamarac

7400 E. Hampden Ave

Denver, CO 80231

(303)488-2000

sara.bradley@wholefoods.com


Posted by: Mary M., Tuesday, May 1, 2007, 4:16pm; Reply: 67
Hello Everyone,

This is an interesting and important thread about agave nectar.

Did anyone check out the Chemical Analysis Comparison Chart on the Blur Cactus website?

http://www.blueagavenectar.com  

If it is accurate, it does indeed appear that the Blue Agave Nectar (which is the Volcanic Nectar from Frontier) has the lowest concentration of Fructose, which is good. It does have low glucose (good) but not 0%. And it does not have any of the other sugars listed except the supposedly good stuff called "inulin".

It would help to get the Agave Chemical Analysis from the other companies to verify the accuracy of the above website.

Well, I ordered some of Volcanic Nectar and I'll observe my reaction to it, which may provide a clue... or not. My family and I been eating the Madhava and Sweet Cactus. My DH says the Sweet Cactus brand acts like white sugar when he eats it and he doesn't like it.

Cordially,
Margaret
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