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Mishri or Sugar: Which Sweetener Should You Choose and Why?

Rajan is a botany and chemistry major. He has worked as a poultry breeder for 23 years, breeding layer and broiler parents.

Mishri (rock sugar)

Mishri (rock sugar)

What Is Mishri vs. Sugar?

Mishri (rock sugar) is a natural sweetener. It is sometimes called rock candy or candy sugar, but there's nothing candy-like about it except for the sweetness.

Sugar (also called table sugar) is another type of sweetener. Although both mishri and sugar are derived from sugarcane, the processing for making them is very different. Mishri is unrefined, whereas sugar is refined. (As an aside, some sugar is derived from sugar beets.)

When sugarcane juice is processed into sugar, an intermediate stage produces a dirty-looking raw sugar. At this point, a certain portion is removed to make mishri. The raw sugar is mixed with water and milk and then poured into large drums in which threads are hung. These drums are covered and stored in cellars where the mishri crystallises on the threads as the solution dries out.

Sugar, on the other hand, is further refined with various chemicals to produce table sugar.

Mishri or sugar? Which one is better for your health and why? Learn about it in this article.

Differences Between Mishri and Sugar

Because mishri and sugar are produced in two very different ways, the two products have very different properties.

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  • Mishri is an alkaline food and is easier to digest. Sugar is acidic and takes longer to digest.
  • Mishri is cooling in nature while sugar is heating in nature.
  • According to Ayurveda, mishri balances the vata and pitta doshas in the body while sugar offers no such benefit.
  • Mishri has several medicinal properties while sugar has none.
  • Since mishri is not processed, it contains some vitamins and minerals whereas sugar contains none.
Dhage wali mishri (thread mishri or mishri with thread)

Dhage wali mishri (thread mishri or mishri with thread)

Types of Mishri

As shown in the photo at the top of the article, mishri is usually available in these three forms.

  1. Mishri crystallised on a thread
  2. Small machine-made crystals of mishri
  3. Large crystallised lumps without any thread

Ayurveda recommends that mishri with thread be used as it is the authentic, traditional mishri. Nowadays, mishri made from sugar is also sold but this is without any thread. To be cartain that you are actually buying mishri and not sugar, make sure you purchase dhage wali mishri, or the one with thread.

Where to Buy Dhage Wali Mishri

Dhage wali mishri is sold by pansari (shop selling dry herbs and desi/Ayurvedic medicines) and also by shops selling materials for pooja (worship).

I always buy dhage wali mishri from a pansari and use it in place of table sugar. If you cannot find mishri in your area, you can order it online.

Difference Between Mishri and Sugar

© 2020 Rajan Singh Jolly

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