Does sugar counteract acid?

In this article, we will answer the following question: Does sugar counteract acid? We teach you the difference between acid and alkaline foods. We will also find if sugar can cause acid reflux and how to counteract the acidity in a sauce.

Does sugar counteract acid?

No, sugar does not actually neutralize the acid in the same way that baking soda does. What it does is that it changes the perception of other tastes. In this way, individuals with acid reflux problems can use sugar to their benefit.

The challenge is to balance the other ingredients well and not add too much sugar. While sugar can’t neutralize acidity in the same way that baking soda can, it does change our perception of other tastes.

The best-known trick and, in fact, many recipes already include it as an ingredient is to add a small amount of sugar, preferably brown, sprinkle it as if we were adding salt over the sauce, and cook for a few minutes over low heat to avoid burning the sugar.

The addition of sugar also balances the sweetness and acidity in fruit-based products such as beverages, sauces, and preserves. In low-fat ice cream, sugar is added to balance the taste and sweetness as the sugar balances the bitterness of the cocoa in the chocolate.

In beverages, the high solubility of sugar contributes to the mouthfeel of the product, giving body to the product. Sugar is also essential in the gelling of jams, preserves, and jellies. Pectin, a natural component of fruits, has the ability to form this gel, but only in the presence of sugar and acid.

What are acidifying foods?

Acidifying foods are those that cause an increase in the acidity of the body regardless of the pH measurement it has in its composition.

Among them are proteins, that is, meats are acidifying, also fish, all foods derived from animals such as milk, eggs. Refined cereals, coffee, chocolate, sugar, alcohol, wine, cocoa, white bread.

What foods are alkaline?

Alkaline foods are those rich in nutrients, fresh, natural, rich in vitamins and minerals, and high in chlorophyll and antioxidants. Green leafy vegetables, vegetables, fruits with low sugar content, nuts, whole grains, seeds….

Among the most alkaline foods, we find spinach, broccoli, kale, celery, bell pepper, cucumber, avocado, and of course alkaline water.

The ideal is to do a body pH test to see if it is acidic or alkaline. If the result is alkaline, it is that we are eating an adequate diet, if instead, it is acidic, we should worry about maintaining a more alkaline diet.

Other FAQs about Sugar which you may be interested in.

Does brown sugar ever go bad?

Does granulated sugar expire?

Is sugar good in spaghetti sauce?

Can sugar cause acid reflux?

Limiting your sugar intake can help you maintain a healthy weight. This is important because your weight influences the way your body reacts to acid reflux symptoms. Added sugars often increase the calorie count in food.

For this reason, sugar, included within the group of carbohydrates, should not represent more than 50% of your daily calories. If you feel that sugar is aggravating your symptoms, you should consult your doctor.

Keeping a food diary can go a long way toward noticing what triggers your symptoms. In it, you must write down what you eat and what you experience after eating. This will also help your doctor identify whether or not sugar is influencing your condition.

Can I use substitutes instead of eating sugar?

Yes, if you want to reduce your sugar intake consider using substitutes when preparing your meals. 

You can also use a more natural option, such as agave honey. Remember that there is currently a great variety of honey and natural sweeteners. This will allow you to sweeten your preparations without the need to eat refined sugar.

Yes you can eat sugar if you suffer from gastric reflux

Eating sugar might have nothing to do with your acid reflux. Everything is in that you see how your body reacts depending on what you eat. On the other hand, keep in mind that, in addition to monitoring your diet, you must improve your habits.

Although there are some over-the-counter medications to treat acid reflux symptoms, we do not recommend that you use them uncontrollably. The best option is to work hand in hand with health specialists. The gastroenterologist will be able to give you the appropriate treatment for your lifestyle and needs.

Final tips

There are times when, even following a recipe to the letter, the result may not be as expected. It often happens when ingredients such as wines, some fruits or tomatoes are used, whose acidity can vary a lot, and that considerably affects the final flavor of the recipe to the point that we can be disappointed when trying the finished dish.

If our sauce has been too acidic, there are two ways to fix it with which it is possible to correct that excess acidity very efficiently and without hardly affecting the flavor of the dish.

  • Add sugar – The best-known trick and, in fact, many recipes already include it as an ingredient is to add a small amount of sugar, preferably brown, sprinkle it as if we were adding salt over the sauce, and cook for a few minutes over low heat to prevent the sugar from burning. 

I insist that you have to start by adding a minimal amount and trying until you find the amount you need because excess acidity will not always be the same and because if we go over it, it will be too sweet.

  • Add sodium bicarbonate – It may be the case that we cannot take sugar or we are not interested, or we do not like that the sauces have that sweetish point; another ingredient that can be used to neutralize the acidity is bicarbonate, and we will use it in the same way, with the sauce over low heat, add a pinch of bicarbonate in the form of rain, mix, taste, and repeat the process until the sauce has lost the necessary acidity.

Which trick do you think is more effective? Please let us know in the comments section!