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Sugars That Add No Calories


A balanced diet is a meal consisting of a variety of food that supplies an adequate amount of nutrients needed for a healthy body.

However, the food constituents vary for everyone most especially Diabetics. A diabetic considers a healthful meal plan to: Have limited saturated fat, moderate amounts of salt and sugar include lean protein, non-starchy vegetables, whole grains, fruits, and healthy fats.

READ MORE: Low-calorie sweeteners bad for pregnant women: Study

According to the American Diabetes Association, people with diabetes can still have sweets, chocolate, or other sugary foods as long they are eaten as part of a healthful meal plan or combined with exercise.

Artificial sweeteners versus Sugar substitutes

Artificial sweeteners can contain calories and carbohydrates while sugar substitutes are low or no-calorie alternatives to sugar that usually have less impact on a person’s blood glucose levels.

Artificial Sweeteners

According to the American Diabetes Association, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved six artificial sweeteners:

  • Aspartame
  • Acesulfame potassium or acesulfame k
  • Saccharin
  • Sucralose
  • Neotame
  • Advantame

People can also buy many of these artificial sweeteners to use as substitutes for table sugar or in cooking and baking.


Sugar alcohols

Sugar alcohols are a type of carbohydrate that occurs naturally in plants. Sugar alcohols are often used as lower-calorie sweeteners in sugar-free chewing gum and candies, as food additives in processed foods, and in toothpaste, certain medications, and laxatives.

Sugars That Add No Calories
Sugars That Add No Calories

Examples of sugar alcohols include sorbitol, mannitol and xylitol. In some people, sugar alcohols can have a laxative effect, which can cause diarrhoea.


Stevia is an intensely sweet-tasting plant that has been used to sweeten beverages and make tea since the 16th century. A non-nutritive substitute that contains no calories. It poses relatively no side effects when taken in moderation. The only hitch with Stevia is the bitter aftertaste but aside from that it is ideal.

Monk fruit

The monk fruit, or luo han guo, is a plant native to Southeast Asia. The juice from monk fruit is extremely sweet, around 150–250 times sweeter than table sugar. Manufacturers add it to a range of foods and drinks as a sugar substitute.

READ MORE: Natural sugars in breastmilk linked to childhood height, weight

Before you take sugar substitutes, you need to know that substitutes may also cause a person to a large amount of food later on. They can also possibly alter a person’s sense of taste, making naturally sweet foods less appetising. Many foods claim to be “sugar-free” or have “no added sugar.” Careful monitoring of carbohydrates and sugar intake with the help of a dietician is vital when managing diabetes. 

The medical information provided in this article is provided as an information resource only. This information does not create any patient-physician relationship and should not be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment.

Source: The Guardian

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