Your healthiest option is to skip sweeteners altogether, but if you must sweeten your coffee or tea, use 1 to 2 teaspoons of natural sugar or honey. Honey and sugar each contain 16 calories and 4 grams of carbs per teaspoon. While some studies suggest that honey may have beneficial antioxidant properties, the research is inconclusive, and you would likely have to eat an unhealthy amount of honey to benefit.
Men should keep their daily sugar intake under 9 teaspoons, while women should limit themselves to 6 teaspoons or less, the maximum daily recommendation by the American Heart Association. For some perspective, a typical 20-ounce bottle of soda contains 16 tsp of sugar.
-- Danielle LaFata