Homemade Black Cherry Soda (No Sugar Added)

Things in my life have been moving a lot slower as of late, and I don't necessarily think that's a bad thing. I actually think that is something that I have deliberately moved towards. I think sometimes I just don't know how these things will feel when they happen, when life starts to feel a bit more organized, and dust settles, and things make sense. I think that might be mindfulness, and while I think I've taken deliberate effort towards the slowing down and being more creative in all aspects of life, there's also a bit of me that's craving change. That might just be the ebb and flow of life, craving peace with the active desire for change. 

In this process it also becomes easier for me to take better care of things, and make soda that can actually be somewhat good for me... somewhat, good for me. This recipe calls for xylitol. An interesting thing I heard about xylitol on this podcast I was listening to is, it can help remineralize teeth. I always try to research these things through medical resources just to double check, because yeah not everything gets published in a national magazine, BUT if there's even a chance that xylitol is remineralizing people's teeth, I'd bet money that someone with an advanced degree has studied it. So it turns out someone has, and it does have significant benefits for your teeth, while also tasting like sugar. 

As far as what is xylitol is, "Xylitol is a five-carbon sugar alcohol compound. Sugar alcohols are neither sugar nor alcohol. They are carbohydrates that resemble sugar, but without the harmful effects of sugar. They can occur naturally in plants or can be manufactured from sugar and starches. Xylitol is not an artificial sweetener, but a crystalline carbohydrate which looks very much like sugar. It is a natural dental antidote for sugar. It can be derived from fibrous parts of plants, vegetables, and berry-type fruits such as strawberries and raspberries. These naturally sweetened fruits give all the taste benefits of sugar without its many drawbacks." RDH (Registered Dental Hygienist Magazine)

So, I couldn't find any info for the actual remineralization benefits, and it doesn't have any significant source of minerals in it. What I did find was that the special chemical compound that is described above keeps bacteria from sticking to your teeth, and is something naturally produced by our own metabolisms (which will always fascinate me,) and is absolutely safe, unlike artificial sweeteners. Also note, there's nothing artificial about xylitol

"Xylitol is a normal part of everyday human metabolism. Our bodies make up to five to 10 grams per day in the metabolism of carbohydrates. Unfortunately, this process occurs in the gut, so it does not deliver any oral benefits. Since our bodies produce xylitol and the enzymes to break it down, there is no chance for any adverse reaction from eating products containing xylitol." RDH (Registered Dental Hygienist Magazine)

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So even though xylitol might not be a cure all for tooth decay, if used frequently and consistently can really make a big improvement, and it is absolutely worth trading up from sugar, help over hype, you might say. Every little change matters. 

On to more fun topics, these adorable coasters were a birthday gift (specifically for this blog I'm obsessed with) from my friends Celina and Tamer, who I still owe a home cooked meal. I also love these coasters and have to share, even though I don't have them, someone should. These cups are actually jam jars with lids, and I love them. These striped rice bowls are new too. 

Here's what you'll need for 4 servings: 

1 cup of xylitol

1 cup of frozen sweet dark cherries

1 cup water

32 oz sparkling water

Directions: 

Add one cup of water and one cup of frozen cherries to a sauce pan on medium heat.

Cook down for 5-10 minutes. Its pretty flexible, but with frozen fruit it takes a little bit longer. 

Add xylitol and stir another 1-2 minutes, or until fully dissolved.

Set aside too cool. 

Yields approximately 1 cup

Divvy into 4 servings, add ice and 8 oz of sparkling water and serve.