Monk fruit, known as Luo Han Guo or Swingle fruit, is is a type of gourd that grows in the sub-tropical areas. It has long been and is currently cultivated in the mountains of Southern China. Monk fruit has been used for centuries in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) as cold and digestive aid. Over the past decade, monk fruit has been transformed from a medicinal fruit into a healthy keto-friendly sweetener!
Monk fruit extract is derived from the pulp of the fruit. The seeds and skin of the fruit are removed, then the juice is collected by crushing the fruit. The sweet substances are known are mogrosides. The fruit extract or juice of monk fruit contains no calories.
Monk fruit contains a powerful antioxidant called Mogroside. It is the same substance that provides monk fruit sweetener its sweet flavour. With this property, monk fruit has been linked to reduced oxidative stress, lower risk of obesity and diabetes, reduced inflammation, treatment for fatigue, and act as a natural antihistamine.
The sweet taste of monk fruit comes from the compounds called mogrosides. Mogrosides are metabolized differently by the body than natural sugars. It is not absorbed in the upper gastrointestinal tract. This is why is has zero calories. When it reaches the colon, gut microbes cleave off the glucose molecules and use them as an energy source. The extract appears to help lower both blood sugar and blood lipids in experimental models of animal diabetes. Some research has shown its potential to limit oxidative damage caused by high levels of blood glucose.
About 150-200 times sweeter than sucrose or table sugar.