Shortly, because I don’t have to. I’ll leave people without the sweet-tooth out of this discussion, as I really don’t get their supposed ‘neutrality’ on the matter of chocolate, sweets and the main topic of this post – gummy bears. Some people would argue that gummy bears are for small children as these are usually the kind of sweets we give to lure them into eating something they’re not fans of, like eating their cereal, drinking their milk and similar. And yet, here I am with a little package of Haribo Roulette in Coca Cola flavour in my hands, enjoying the feeling of almost violently chewing the tasty jelly and quietly releasing a dose of the level of daily stress in my life. Am I being childish? Maybe. Or more likely – I just really love gummy bears.
Anyway, one day reality hit me and a question popped in my head: “If I want to lead a healthy lifestyle and stick to a good food regimen, why am I consuming something that’s nothing more than simple, white, artificial sugar and empty calories?” You can think that healthy, dark chocolate could easily satisfy your sweet-tooth, but then again, gummy bears are just more than eating something sweet! They’re a time travel experience to the childhood days.
So normally, I had to see just how much of that claim is true and how today’s advanced technological world responds to it. Unfortunately for my enthusiasm – everything is true, but luckily for my love of gummies – there is something called birch sugar xylitol which can replace the bad sugar in gummies and make them a rather healthy treat.
The birch sugar xylitol alternative is already present in a product we use daily: the chewing gum. It looks a lot like sugar, but it isn’t as harmful since it’s derived from birch. The best and biggest advantage of consuming xylitol-rich products is that you won’t develop cavities – a dental disease mainly caused by artificial sugar that slowly but surely destroys your pearly whites. You can only guess where my mind went with this info, right? So I figured – how about gummy bears with xylitol instead of sugar?
I found out that while it’s possible to make them, they’re not massively produced and sold in stores anywhere. So of course, I had to make them and experience the difference for myself. I found a recipe online and I realized it’s fairly easy to make them (if you have the time, of course). You’d need all the normally used ingredients, like gelatin and fruits for flavour, and a dose of xylitol as a substitute for sugar. There’s even a vegan and vegetarian option for gummy bears! The taste kind of differs from the original one, which is normal and pretty much expected. And the feeling of chewing them is also kind of different; maybe there should be more gelatine included in the recipe. I should definitely try the next time though.
Bottom line, the fact that the gummy bears currently available on the market aren’t exactly healthy, doesn’t mean that you can’t make ones that are. You just need to use the right ingredients, which can cost a little extra, but for the love of gummy bears – I know I’d be up for it.