Are you diabetic, or do you live with someone who has diabetes? You should know with sugar substitutes you can live a normal life and enjoy any food you like without worrying about raising your blood sugar levels. The majority of sugar substitutes contain very little or no calories so they also help you maintain a healthy weight. However, there is a lot more to them, and in this post, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about the best sugar substitutes for diabetics. From how they affect our health and how good they are for our body.
What are Sugar Substitutes for Diabetics?
Sugar substitutes are food additive of natural or artificial origin. They are used to enhance the sweetness of the foods and drinks that may require it. They’are commercially sold as artificial sweeteners or zero-calorie sweeteners. They can be used as sugar alternatives for daily use by people with diabetes as they don’t affect blood sugar, but are also often used as the main ingredient in processed foods and drink products.
Sweeteners are usually more potent in their sweetness than refined sugar due to which they’are usually consumed in very little quantity than refined sugar. Another benefit of using sugar substitutes is that some of them are low in calories, while others have no calories.
US FDA considers and regulates Sugar substitutes as food additives. They review the manufacturing process and make sure that sugar substitutes are safe for human consumption, and they contain the right ingredients in the right amount for people with diabetes.
Here are some of the best-known sugar substitutes easily found in online stores local stores.
Natural Sugar Substitutes
Before starting to name natural sweeteners, we must tell you that as you should have already noticed, the aforementioned are also natural sweeteners. However, these that we will mention below are those that are available in the market and that can be used frequently by anyone, with total confidence.
Truvia Natural Stevia Sweetener: Natural zero calorie Sugar substitute
Truvia Natural Stevia Sweetener is extracted from the Stevia plant. It’s one of the best brands that can be found in health food stores, organic markets, and different processed brand products. The stevia sugar substitute is almost 300 times sweeter than conventional sugar, does not affect blood glucose levels, making it ideal for people with diabetes or on a low-carb diet.
- It contains 1000 Stevia Sweetener sweetener packets.
- One packet is as sweet as 2 teaspoon of Sugar.
- Perfect natural sugar substitute or people with diabetes.
- It’s plant-based and Gluten-free.
- Zero-calorie sweetener
Agave In The Raw Sweetener, non-GMO Sugar Substitute
- Agave In The Raw sweetener comes from the core of Mexico’s blue agave plant.
- It can be used in hot or cold drinks, topping, and baking.
- It’s gluten-free and 25% sweeter than refined sugar.
- It’s organic, and vegan certified sugar substitute.
Agave is the nectar of the plant with the same name, this is available in liquid form and you can find it in health food stores, it is a little sweeter than sugar. It does not affect blood glucose levels, but it does have a calorie intake; It even has more calories than sugar as such, but since it is sweeter, people would use it less.
Xlear XyloSweet Non-GMO Xylitol Sweetener Sugar substitute
- Xlear xylosweet is a natural sweetener with low carbohydrate xylitol.
- It’s as sweet as table sugar but contains 40% fewer calories.
- Ideal substitute sweetener in weight loss diet or people with diabetes.
- Xylitol reduces the risk of tooth decay
- Non-GMO and gluten-free sweetener
- Low glycemic index of 7.
Xylitol is considered to be the best natural substitute for sugar, it is extracted from natural sources, like berries, mushrooms, and also from corn. It is best used when baking. It doesn’t raise the blood sugar, so it’s also one of the best sugar alternatives for diabetics. It can cause an upset stomach if consumed in access.
Wholesome Organic Cane Sugar, Non GMO & Gluten Free Sugar substitute
Wholesome organic cane sugar is unrefined whole sugar extracted from Cane grown in South America. It can be used to replace white or brown sugar to make delicious sweet dishes.
- Made from naturally sweet cane.
- Perfect substitute for refined sugar
- Use in hot or cold beverages, or use in baking.
- Completely natural and clean production process.
- USDA certified organic and non-GMO project verified.
- Kosher certified, glutan free and vegan sweetener.
Torani Green Apple Syrup, 750 mL
Apple Syrup is a completely natural sweetener commonly used in Nordic countries. It’s created by cooking the Apple juice over low heat.
- This sweetener provides a very crisp Apple flavor.
- It can be used in beverages and cocktails of all types
- Made from real American and European fruit ingredients.
- Drawback: It’s high in calories
Now Foods, Fructose Fruit Sugar 3 LB Sugar Substitute
Now Foods, Fructose Fruit Sugar contains pure crystalline fructose sugar substitute. Fructose is a natural sugar that is extracted from fruits and vegetables that people with diabetes can consume. It’s very similar to table sugar in taste.
- It’ extracted from Corn.
- Ideal for baking biscuits
- 1.2-1.5 times sweeter than refined sugar.
- Beneficial for people with diabetes
Hidden Springs Organic Vermont Maple Syrup Sugar substitute
Maple is a typical tree in Canada and the Nordic countries, this syrup is obtained from the juice of the tree, is high in nutrients and is famous for being the main ingredient in the Sap Syrup diet.
Natural Sugar Substitute advantages
The main advantage of natural sugar subtitutes is that they do not go through chemical processes, harmful to our health.
They are less caloric even than sugar, so it is advisable to include them when we are looking to lose weight.
They are ideal for people with diabetes since being more natural and less harmful than sugar prevents blood sugar levels from rising.
These sweeteners do not cause cavities or harm our teeth.
Natural Sugar Substitute Disadvantages
Natural sweeteners do not have any disadvantage for our health. However, it is recommended that the doctor be consulted before consumption if we have any allergies, are pregnant or before giving it to children under 6 years of age.
What are artificial Sugar Substitutes?
Artificial sugar substitutes are those that have a process of creation through chemistry. These can be added to food or drinks, but can also be used for food preparation.
Products considered diet or low in calories have artificial sugar substitutes among their components. Among them you can find:
EQUAL: Zero Calorie Sweetener, Aspartame Sugar Substitute
- EQUAL SWEETENER packet of aspartame sugar substitute is as potent as 2 teaspoons of table sugar.
- It contains 2,000 aspartame packets which are zero calories.
- It doesn’t contain any sodium, fat, or carbohydrates.
- A perfect sugar substitute for diabetics, also good for people on the Ketogenic diet.
- It can be used in any dishes or drinks.
Aspartame is made up of phenylalanine and aspartic acid. It is 200 times sweeter than table sugar, however it tends to lose its sweetness when exposed to heat. Other than that, it has not been shown to have severe side effects.
BulkSupplements Sucralose Powder, 2.2 lbs, Zero Calorie Sugar Substitute
- BulkSupplements Sucralose is a sugar substitute that is between 300 and 1000 times sweeter than sucrose.
- It’s manufactured in FDA registered facility to cGMP standards.
- It’s a no-calorie sweetener and suitable for baking or smoothies, and beverages.
- Contain pure ingredients, and known to help with tooth decay.
Sucralose a thermostable compound, this means that it does not dissipate when cooked with it. It is used for many diet foods and drinks. It is also used to sweeten chewy sweets such as chewing gum, frozen desserts, and fruit juices.
Sugarly Sweet Zero Calorie Sweetener: Saccharin Sugar Substitute
- Sugarly Sweet Saccharin Sugar substitute contains zero calories.
- It comes with 200 packets of Zero calorie Saccharin sweetener.
- It tastes similar to Sugar and can be added to all types of foods and drinks.
- It contains less than 1 gram of carbs per serving.
- It doesn’t contain any calories, fat or sodium.
Saccharin is considered 200 to 700 times sweeter than conventional sugar. This usually has a bitter taste and can generate a metallic taste in some liquids. This should not be used for cooking.
ARTIFICIAL SWEETENERS ADVANTAGES
- The main advantage of artificial sweeteners is that they are created to be low in calories. They help complete a low-calorie diet to lose weight.
- Artificial sweeteners are much sweeter than sugar and are mostly calorie-free.
- Much less artificial sweetener is needed to sweeten a drink or food, as these are 400 times sweeter than conventional sugar.
ARTIFICIAL SWEETENERS DISADVANTAGES
- Its flavor is usually different from the sugar we are used to, many people find it difficult to get used to the taste at first.
- It is not recommended to exceed your intake, not because it can be fatal to health, but because it is capable of sweetening much more than natural sugar.
- You may have heard that they can cause diseases like cancer, but no scientific study has yet proven that to be true.
- Many times pregnant women are advised not to consume it.
Are there any Harmful effects to Artificial Sugar Substitutes?
When it comes to artificial sweeteners being harmful, this is a topic quite debated by doctors and nutritionists, as these are relatively new and there are not many studies on it. However, you can see the list of sweeteners that are FDA approved. These are: Aspartame, saccharin, potassium acesulfame, and sucralose.
As long as people maintain a base intake, they will continue to be safe, as in everything, any excess is not recommended.
What artificial Sugar substitutes are currently Approved by FDA?
The FDA-approved artificial sweeteners for people with diabetes are:
- – Aspartame
- – Saccharin
- – Potassium acesulfame
- – Sucralose
Healthier Natural sugar substitutes
Stevia: Stevia is one of the sweetest natural sugar substitues, it’s very popular with diabetics and people who are cutting down on sugar for other health or lifestyle reasons.
Agave Syrup: Agave syrup is one of the best natural alternatives to refined sugar that have become popular in last few dacades. With glycemic index is 30, it’ digested and metabolized by the body slowly, and it’s 25% sweeter than table sugar.
Maple Syrup: Maple Syrup: Better known as Maple, its extracted from the sap of maple trees, the symbol of Canada. It’s very sweet and commonly used to sweeten desserts.
Honey: Honey is a natural product available to almost everyone in the world. It has lots of healing properties and health benefits. Which makes it an indispensable to our diet. Due to it’s being naturally sweet, it works as an alternative to sugar too.
Coconut sugar: Coconut sugar is a nutritious sweetener extracted from tne nectar of coconut palm flowers. Coconut flowers are heated to evaporate the moisture, and what’s left is a dense, brown substance that crystalillizes into coconut sugar. It’s a very common ingredient of Asian cousine, and has been introduced in western countries very recently. It % water, and 5% minerals.
Molasses: Molasses is the by-product of manufacturing refined sugar from Sugarcane. To create Molasses, Sugarcanes are burned to brown and then pressed in machine to extract the juice of the cane. The juice is then boiled and put in a centrifuge to separate Sugar crystals and the liquid, which is turned into Molasses.
How to replace sugar?
Trade commercial cereals for granola. Make a homemade granola with oatmeal, nuts, and seeds.
Change soft drinks for natural juices, this will refresh you and help hydrate your body much more.
Opt for fresh fruits instead of jams, these are high in calories and high in sugar.
Substitute the sugar for the sweeteners that we have mentioned above.
Change milk chocolate for dark chocolate, they have less sugar and fewer calories.
For a snack, eat the healthiest snacks, such as fruits or nuts without sugar or added salts.
Always try to eat natural fruits instead of those that come in syrup.
Remember that light is not synonymous with better health, these also have sugar.
Do not keep sweets in your home, this will make it much more difficult for you to stop eating them.
Remember that leaving sugar is a process, so you must have a lot of patience and perseverance.
How to substitute sugar for sweetener?
These are the equivalences between sugar and different types of sweetener:
Sugar and Powdered Sweetener: This is the sweetest sweetener used in baking. The equivalence is quite simple, 10 grams of sugar, is 1 gram of sweetener.
Sugar and sweetener in tablets: In this case it should be calculated as above. Divide the amount of sugar by 10, but we must multiply it by 2.
Sugar and liquid sweetener: We must divide the amount of sugar by 12.5 and the result is the number of milliliters we must use.
What are the benefits of using sugar substitutes?
No Calories: This is one of the benefits when we include sweeteners in our diet, they can help us reduce our weight, if they are accompanied by a good size in the portions and exercise.
Different options: As we have mentioned, there are natural and artificial sweeteners, both offer you few calories.
Different presentations: You can find sugar substitutes in a large number of foods and products that we consume daily, they will help satisfy your craving for something sweet.
They will help you stay in control: Sweeteners will teach you to take better care of your body, because you will take more into account what you eat.
What are the myths around sugar substitutes?
Here are answers to some of the common myths surrounding artificial and natural sweeteners.
Myth #1: People with diabetes cannot consume them.
False, Artificial and natural sweeteners can be consumed by people with diabetes.
Myth #1: They cause cancer
False, Many scientific studies have ruled out that sweeteners can cause cancer.
Myth #3: They do not cause cavities
True, the Majority of natural and artificial sweeteners do not increase the risk of cavities, because they do not ferment in the plaque of the teeth.
Myth #4: Sugar substitutes have Zero calories
False, Although they are low on calories, it does not mean that if consumed in large quantities you’ll not gain weight.
Myth #5: They all have the same intensity of sweetness
False, each sweetener has its own intensity. Artificial sweeteners can be far more potent than natural ones.
Myth #6: They are sweeter than sugar
True, almost all sugar substitutes are sweeter than sugar, so you need to consume them in lower amounts.
Myth #7: They can be used for cooking and baking.
True, some of the sweeteners, especially the natural ones can be safely used in cooking and baking.
Myth #8: Stevia cannot be consumed by people with diabetes
False, this natural sweetener can be used by people with diabetes as a sugar substitute
Myth #9: Products with sweeteners don’t contain carbohydrates.
False, even though sweeteners don’t contain carbohydrates, they might contain other ingredients with carbohydrates in them
Myth #10: They do not help lose weight.
True, Sugar substitutes on their own these will not help you lose weight. However, if you combine them with a healthy diet and exercise, you can lose those extra pounds much faster.
Sugar Substitutes: Frequently Asked Questions
What is a sweetener?
It’s an artificial or natural product that has a sweet taste but provides fewer calories than table sugar, generally used by people who are health conscious, diabetics, or weight watches, so they are called “sugar substitutes”.
Why should I used a Sweetener?
Here are some of the reasons people use sweeteners
- To lose weight: Sweeteners decreases energy intake by replacing sugar with substitutes that add little to no calories.
- Dental care: Unlike refined sugar, substitutes do not ferment in plaque of teeth due to which they don’t cause cavities.
- Diabetes: People with diabetes have difficulty regulating their blood glucose levels and consuming refined sugar can make their condition worse. By limiting sugar intake with natural or artificial sweeteners, people with diabetes can enjoy their favorite food without worrying about a spike in blood sugar levels.
How much sweeteners can I consume?
Just like anything else, sweeteners should be used in moderation to prevent the body from consuming more energy than needed for its normal functions.
How does Sweeteners affect people with diseases?
Sugar substitutes are generally safe for people with ailments. However, you should consult your doctor before start consuming sugar substitutes if you have any major illnesses, especially in your kidneys or liver.
Do sweeteners taste different from refined sugar?:
Yes, Natural and artificial sweeteners are made from different substances, and the processes that these substances go through modify their taste, some taste similar to sugar than others. In most cases, the sweetener has a sweetening power hundreds of times greater than refined sugar they need to be consumed in very little quantity to get same level of sweetness.
What is the bet sweetener for dessert?
Any sugar substitute can be used for the preparation of desserts. One of the most used is Stevia. For them, you must use the equivalences that we have mentioned above to know the appropriate measures. Remember that sweeteners are much sweeter than conventional sugar and it is not recommended that the same amount be used.
Sugar substitutes for diabetes
Sugar substitutes are recommended for people with diabetes. Even doctors prescribe them to help diabetics control their blood glucose levels. However, you should be careful with the amount of sweeteners and consult your doctors before increasing the quantity.